Report Number: 017
As we began the 2001-2004 triennium, the future of General Synod was uncertain. The Anglican Journal was a publication of General Synod, and managed by a sub-committee of the Information Resources Committee.
In order to preserve the existence of the Anglican Journal, and the multi-faceted nature of its ministry, the decision was made to incorporate separately from General Synod, thus creating the need for an independent Anglican Journal Board. The Anglican Journal Board of Directors would serve as publisher of The Journal, and would ensure the continuation of the paper as well as all diocesan publications that rely on this paper for distribution.
The Anglican Journal was incorporated in January 2002, and the Board of Directors assumed control of the publication on January 1, 2003. Thanks in large part to the work of Bev Murphy, letters patent and bylaws were created which serve to identify who we are and the responsibilities we face as “publisher”.
Indeed, much of our work this past year-and-a-half has been dealing with the terms of incorporation, and learning to function independently of the standing committees of General Synod. We liaise with the Information Resources Committee (through staff and four common members) and the Mission Coordination Group (through one appointed representative). As the General Synod is our “founding member”, we regularly report to the Council of General Synod. The Journal by-laws also require that one of our board members must be an active editor of a diocesan paper.
Relationship with Diocesan Publications
In order to qualify for the Heritage Canada Grant, and special postage rates, diocesan papers are inserted into the Journal for delivery. This “unifying” task of the Journal reminds all subscribers that they are part of a national church, as well as a diocesan one. We can only enjoy this arrangement if we keep our circulation lists up to date, as well as a full accounting of the budget costs from each of the diocesan papers. One of our ongoing challenges is to keep these figures up to date with regular reports from diocesan treasurers.
Representatives of the Journal also attend the Anglican Editors Association (AEA) Conference. This annual gathering allows the representatives of our national and diocesan papers to share resources and story ideas, as well as build relationships with those in similar ministries around the country. Staff of the Journal are often called upon to lead workshops or facilitate discussions on particular issues.
The Anglican Journal continues to be blessed with a very talented staff in all aspects of its production. Our editorial staff continues to win accolades, last year being awarded “best in class” in national and international newspapers by the Associated Church Press (a North American press organization) as well as 21 other awards from that association and the Canadian Church Press. The successful distribution and management is a direct result of the dedicated staff at Church House. We do note, the following staff changes in the last triennium.
Shortly after our formation, the Board learned that our advertising policy was not a formal one (and that we were operating under a “simple handshake” agreement). One of the first actions of the Board, was to formalize a two-year agreement with Fenn Company Inc. (who have represented us for the past 6 years).
We have also extended the printing contract with Signal Star ( Goderich, Ontario) to June 2007. This decision was made with the full support of the Anglican Editors Association, and all diocesan bishops have supported this decision (In their capacity as publishers of their diocesan paper).
Anglican Journal Appeal
2003 marked the tenth anniversary of the Journal Appeal. During this time we have received over $3,000,000 through the appeal. Of this amount, over $1,000,000 has been returned to participating dioceses as their share of net donations. We thank all those dioceses and individuals who continue to support our paper through this appeal. Your support is a clear sign that Anglicans see The Journal as “our paper” and are proud of its accomplishments.
Ministry Matters is the national church’s most popular publication. It is dedicated to serving the clergy and lay leaders of the church, and offers information and resources to support their ministries. It is produced three times a year and is distributed to clergy and General Synod lay members, as well as others who have requested it.
We share oversight of this publication with the Information Resources Committee and, in the coming triennium, look to increasing its circulation and profile in the wider church.
Circulation & Database
The circulation/database department maintains the subscription lists for the Anglican Journal, all diocesan newspapers (excluding Newfoundland’s Anglican Life), the Ministry Mailer and other church publications.
The Anglican Journal circulation list drives the Church House Common Database. This database provides national staff with over 80 centralized lists to assist them in their work. The clergy list is also used to produce the clergy section of the annual Anglican Church Directory. The department makes over 7,000 changes per month to the various lists resulting in the most complete list of active members of the Anglican Church of Canada.
A recent study of the activity on the General Synod website, has shown that the most popular destination for web-surfers is the Journal link (www.anglicanjournal.com). Here visitors can read the most current stories covered by Journal staff, read their favourite columns, and view back issues of the paper. We will be watching this trend closely, with an eye to how we can use this vehicle of communication to further the ministry of the Anglican Journal.
General Synod 2004
The Anglican Journal will be very visible at General Synod 2004. In addition to covering the proceedings, we will be hosting a booth in the display area – and invite all General Synod members to visit us. There you will learn exactly how the paper is produced (from the first idea for a story through to when it is delivered to your door), as well as have the opportunity to meet some of our award-winning staff.
The Reverend Rob Towler
Anglican Journal Board of Directors
The Venerable Jim Boyles (General Synod)
Mr. Vianney “Sam” Carriere (General Synod)
Ms. Lori Chortyk ( New Westminster)
The Reverend Keith Denman ( Edmonton)
Lt. Col. The Reverend John Fletcher (Armed Forces)
The Most Reverend Andrew Hutchison ( Montreal)
The Reverend Ed Lewis ( British Columbia)
Mr. Robert Martin ( Nova Scotia and P.E.I.)
The Reverend Brian Pearson ( Calgary)
The Reverend Rob Towler (Huron)
Ms. Anna Watts ( Fredericton)
Ms. Molly Wolf ( Ontario)
The Right Reverend Don Young (Central Nfld.)