It’s Sunday, so after a slow start I went to the main service at St James’ Anglican Cathedral in Toronto.
As ever, before I even got there I discovered yet another example of language confusion. I stopped at a Starbucks for breakfast. I asked for their bacon and Gouda (gow-duh) roll. Blank looks (with which you will realise I am becoming familiar). I pointed to the cabinet – always a good international way of communicating, especially if one is troubled by the fact that both parties believe they speak English. Oh, he said, bacon and Gouda (goo-duh). Oh well. As one of the web sites said, on my research for a correct pronunciation, the entire world uses the UK version (or more accurately the Dutch version) except northern America. The same site ended by pointing out that it tastes just as nice however you say it!
On the way I also saw, at last, one of the Toronto trams.
The service in the Cathedral was lovely. The curate, Leigh, led it well and the Dean, Andrew, spoke very well. Amongst other things he was pointing out how the smartphone culture, which encourages us all to remain connected, in fact makes us disconnected, insular and isolated when we exchange attention to our real neighbours for electronic friends. The point is well made in my opinion.
The giving envelopes in the Cathedral contain a section for you to fill in credit/debit card details. My treasurer at SLJ would have loved that. He has been nagging me about electronic giving for ages. The Church of England now has a project to enable this, so… Yes, Roger, I will follow up when I get back.
The service of the Canadian church caught my eye at one point. Most of this paragraph will be of no interest to most of my readers, but part of the blog is to record what I reflect on. Their service does not include the Filioque clause! I did an hour’s research when I got back to the hotel.
The Filioque clause is just three words, ‘and the Son’, in the ancient creed (or statement of faith) which for many centuries has been debated as to whether it should be there or not. It was the cause (in part) of the great schism between the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Churches in 1054. When I was at college I was taught that for anglicans it was in. Now I have done some research and it appears that for anglicans it is out! However, most Anglican churches around the world have not yet changed their texts, simply because the problems which arise from having printed texts which can’t be changed quickly. It turns out that our Church of England Common Worship book has an option to include or exclude it. Well I never knew that! And you probably wont really mind that much either way. But at least you are slightly better informed as a result of my blog.
I am off for a walk next. Today has been the Toronto Marathon so a degree of chaos but I think that is all over now.
Then some dinner and first thing tomorrow I pack.
I travel to New Zealand next. Not sure what I will be able to blog in the next couple of days, but watch out for more in due course.