Anglican archbishop facing sexual misconduct allegations resigns
The Anglican Church of Canada says an archbishop has resigned over allegations of sexual misconduct.
Mark MacDonald, 68, was the first national Anglican bishop to represent Indigenous church members when he was appointed in 2007.
Joe Vecsi, communications director for the Anglican Church of Canada, said MacDonald’s resignation was tied to an independent investigation and the allegations were not criminal. The church leadership did not know who the complainant was, he added.
The church did not provide further details about the allegations.
The church is committed to a workplace free of violence, coercion, discrimination and sexual harassment, a news release added.
Father Linda Nicholls, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, said in a letter posted on the church’s website that prayers should be directed to the complainant.
The church is also reviewing its sexual harassment policy to ensure it is effective and appropriate, the bulletin said.
MacDonald was appointed to the position as part of the church’s effort to mend long-broken relationships with the natives.
“Ripple effects ΓÇª will be felt throughout the Church in Canada and internationally, but most especially in the Sacred Circle and the Anglican Council of Indigenous Peoples,” Nicholls writes.
Bishop Sidney Black, the Indigenous Bishop of the Seven Territories Pact in the Diocese of Calgary, will fill out the provisional list, Nicholls said.
MacDonald is originally from Duluth, Minn., and also served as bishop of the U.S. Diocese of Alaska. The church’s website says he is married and has three children. Information about MacDonald has since been deleted.
At the time MacDonald was appointed, the church said it hoped he could help with the healing and reconciliation needed for the church’s role in residential schools.
An estimated 150,000 Indigenous children are forced to attend residential schools. About three dozen boarding schools are run by the Anglican church. The church also operates a number of day schools for indigenous children.
Canada’s Anglican Church first apologized to survivors in 1993. Another apology was issued last year after the discovery of possibly unmarked graves at the site of the remains. old residential school.
During his tenure, MacDonald has been outspoken about Indigenous rights, identity, and how the church must respond.
This Canadian Press report was first published on April 20, 2022.