frgavin on August 2nd, 2009

by the Rt. Rev’d Martyn Minns

It is a great privilege to be able to speak to you at this third CANA Council. I am so very grateful for your prayers and your presence here today. Who would have believed that we would come so far in such a short time? CANA has become a remarkable community of believers stretching across the USA and Canada and you are here as a testimony to the miracle that God is doing. I note with profound gratitude the distinguished guests who are with us at this Council, many of whom have traveled long distances to be with us. Thank you – you honor and bless us by your presence. It has been almost a year since we met together in Ohio and throughout that time I have continued to give thanks for all of you. Your faith and courage have been an inspiration to me and I am reminded again of one of Paul’s prayers in Ephesians, “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

This prayer captures much of how I feel about each one of you, clergy and lay members of our CANA community. We are a rather “rag?tag” bunch and yet inspired by the Spirit of God we have been able to accomplish far more than we could have ever asked or imagined. Many of you have paid a high price for this journey of faith and yet your faithfulness has inspired countless others and God has been glorified through you. Thank you for your courage. Thank you for your willingness to stand firm on the Word of God. Thank you for your confidence in the Lord and thank you for the many ways in which you bless and encourage me. Thank you!

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