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EFC Update Newsletter May 14, 2019

14 May 2019

Decision on Physicians’ Conscience Appeal Expected Tomorrow 

The Ontario Court of Appeal is expected to release its decision tomorrow on the court challenge of policies that require doctors to participate in euthanasia and assisted suicide against their conscientious objection. The EFC co-intervened to argue for freedom of conscience with Christian Legal Fellowship and the Ontario Assembly of Catholic Bishops. Visit our website for a joint response to the decision from the interveners and more background information on this case including previous commentary by CMDS Executive Director Larry Worthen. 

EFC President Begins Sabbatical

EFC President Bruce Clemenger is beginning a planned sabbatical season. Bill Fietje, EFC Board Chair and former president of the Associated Gospel Churches, shares: "As chair of the board for the EFC, I'm happy to announce a long-awaited planned sabbatical for our president, Bruce J. Clemenger from now until Dec 1. We are pleased that the organization and EFC’s team is in a solid position of strength so that our president can devote this time for rest and study. We are confident the EFC community will be the ultimate benefactor of Bruce’s strategic reflections and writing as we continue to bear witness on key issues facing Canadians and the church in Canada. On behalf of the EFC Board, we are pleased to appoint Dr. David Guretzki, the EFC's vice president and resident theologian, as acting president during this time. We continue to anticipate a productive season as the EFC serves, always with your help and prayers.”

EFC Presentation to Senate Committee on Bill C-75

On May 8, the EFC made a written submission and an oral presentation on Bill C-75 to the Senate Legal and Constitution Affairs Committee. Among other things, Bill C-75 would allow some serious offences related to human trafficking, assaulting clergy and infanticide to be considered as relatively minor summary conviction offences. Read the full written submission. For more details, visit our website.

The EFC Seeks Intervener Status Again on Religious Freedom in Alberta Schools

On April 29 the Alberta Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal by faith-based schools and others to be exempt from recent Alberta legislation on Gay-Straight Alliances until there is a ruling on its constitutionality. Alberta’s Bill 24 was passed in November 2017. It requires principals to immediately grant permission for GSA clubs or activities upon request and specifies that there is to be no notice to parents about student participation, even for the youngest students. The EFC was an intervener in this case to argue in support of parental rights and religious freedom. Because the dismissal was a split decision, the request for an injunction will now carry on to the original hearing in Alberta, and the EFC has applied once again for intervener status. For more information, see the EFC's website.

Federal Election 2019 Resources

The EFC’s federal election 2019 resources are now available online. Get our:
→ Issue questions for candidates
→ What churches can and cannot do
→ Brochure on faith, voting and political engagement (aussi en français)
→ And more!

Feel free to reproduce and distribute copies of these resources in your group or church: www.TheEFC.ca/Election2019.

The FT Interview with Dr. Anna Robbins

Anna Robbins will become the seventh president of Acadia Divinity College in Wolfville, N.S., and dean of theology at Acadia University on July 1. She spoke with Faith Today about her optimism for the Church today and the role of collective repentance.

If you don’t have a chance to sit down and read this full article—or if you just want to rest your eyes—you now can listen to the audio podcast of our interview with Dr. Robbins on the Faith Today website, along with all our other podcasts.

A Magazine Mom Will Love – for Half Price!

Are you looking for a gift for your mother? Faith Today offered half-price gift subscriptions in the weeks before Mother’s Day and will continue to honour requests for the discount for one more week. Get your mom six issues of Canada’s Christian magazine for only $14.99 (reg. $29.99) at www.FaithToday.ca/Mom.

Coming Events at TheEFC.ca/Calendar 

Publicize your event for free.
→ Renegotiating Faith: Continuing the Conversation, Burlington, May 15
→ Biblical Storytelling, Brandon, May 13-15
→ Church Leaders Forum by World Vision, Regina, Winnipeg, Montreal, May 14-16
→ Multiply Conference, Halifax, May 14-15
→ Wycliffe College Preaching Day (J. Mangina, A. Brownlee), Toronto, May 14
→ EFC Speaker in Oakville, May 17
→ Overflow Youth Conference, Waterloo, May 17-19
→ YC Alberta Youth Conference, Red Deer, May 18-20
→ Small Church Consultation, Guelph, May 21-22
→ Historymaker Youth Conference, Chilliwack/Nanaimo, May 24-26
→ Together for Adoption and Fostering Canada, Waterloo, May 24-26
→ Day of Prayer for Christian Camps, nationwide, May 26
→ EFC Speaker at PAOC Campus Worker / YA Leader Summit, Calgary, May 27-29
→ International Collaboration on Faith and Violence, Wolfville, May 27-29
→ Reveal Conference on Sexualized Culture, Sarnia, June 1
→ Mission of God Conference 2019, Grimsby, June 1
→ Transition 101, Toronto, June 1
→ EFC Speaker in Three Hills, Alberta, June 1

In Case You Missed It 

Dispatch from Brian Stiller: An Unexpected Easter in Sri Lanka
Faith Today Wins Awards at Canadian Church Press Convention
Things Are Not What They Once Were (Audio Podcast)
The Spirituality of Writing, and How to Get Started (Audio Podcast)