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Celebrating 60 years

People, Partners and Progress: 60 stories for 60 years

A Worship Resource celebrating 60 years

By Suzanne Rumsey, PWRDF Public Engagement Coordinator

The Primate’s World Relief Fund (as it was first named) came into existence as a result of the Springhill Mine Disaster of 1958. On October 23 of that year, in Springhill, Nova Scotia, an underground “bump” in a coal mine trapped 174 men 4,000 feet underground. Seventy-five of the miners died. The tragedy moved Anglicans and other Canadians to respond with assistance for the stricken families and community.

This resource provides an opportunity to reflect on the 60 years of a journey that Anglicans have undertaken in partnership with communities in Canada and throughout the world through The Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF). It is also an opportunity to hold up before God in worship our present and future journey together as, in the words of our vision statement, we seek to build “a truly just, peaceful and healthy world.”

The great American writer and farmer, Wendell Berry, describes the journey we all take on this “fragile earth, our island home” in the following way:

We travelers, walking to the sun, can’t see
Ahead, but looking back the very light
That blinded us shows us the way we came,
Along which blessings now appear, risen
As from sightlessness to sight, and we,
By blessing brightly lit, keep going toward
That blessed light that yet to us is dark.

Wendell Berry, Sabbath Poem VI, 1999, in This Day, New and Collected Sabbath Poems, (Berkeley: Counterpoint, 2013), 200. Used with permission by the author.

PWRDF invites you to celebrate 60 years of blessings and to continue walking together with PWRDF partners and volunteers along the brightly lit path toward the next 60.

Using this resource

As I was compiling the elements for this worship resource I came upon three helpful descriptions of liturgy:

  • the work of the people
  • a sacred drama of the human encounter with God in the midst of community
  • and an incarnational public theology

It struck me that similarly PWRDF is an important part of the work of the people of the Anglican Church of Canada. It offers Canadian Anglicans and others an opportunity to enter into “a sacred drama of the human encounter with God in the midst of community” as we journey with and support development partners and the communities they serve. And it enables us to carry out “incarnational public theology” through education and advocacy initiatives in Canada and internationally.

Therefore this worship resource brings together the work of PWRDF and the work of liturgy.

Two orders of worship are offered:

Click on either of the above services to view and download a bulletin. They are designed to be printed like a church bulletin on 8.5×11-inch paper using the “booklet” function on your printer. Be sure to download the file to your hard drive before printing for best results.

These orders of worship can be used in whole, or you can integrate different parts into your own service:

Download the entire resource 

We invite you to choose hymns appropriate to your congregational tradition and needs.

Much of the written text for these services is taken from The Book of Alternative Services and Three Supplementary Eucharistic Prayers for The Book of Alternative Services and Two Services of the Word of the Anglican Church of Canada. Please use the following copyright notice when reproducing liturgical texts:

Some rights reserved (CCBY-NC-ND) by PWRDF. 

Make a PWRDF Sunday

While this resource has been prepared as part of PWRDF’s 60th anniversary celebrations, it is designed for use both during and beyond our 60th anniversary year. Please consider using it:

  • During International Development Week 2019, either on the Sunday beginning the week (Feb.3) or the Sunday ending it (Feb.10).
  • During a “PWRDF Sunday” that your parish designates in 2019 and on an annual basis beyond 2019.

Please consider using your PWRDF Sunday as an opportunity to take up a special offering for PWRDF. An order form for donation envelopes and other resources featuring the work of PWRDF is available here or contact Eric Wallin at 416-921-7204 ext. 228 or 1-800-296-6813.

Tell us about your PWRDF Sunday!

Please fill out this evaluation form and let us know if this resource was helpful to you. Please send your responses or any questions to PWRDF Public Engagement Coordinator Suzanne Rumsey.

You can also share your photos and stories about your PWRDF Sunday on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.