The 132nd Annual Council Sessions of the Diocese of Colombo were held from 26th to 28th October 2017 in the diocesan auditorium. As is customary, the sessions began with evensong in the Cathedral of Christ the Living Saviour, with the preacher being Ven. Keerthsiri Fernando the Archdeacon of Nuwara Eliya, who had been elected as Bishop of the Diocese of Kurunegala a week earlier.
The Chief guests at the sessions were Mrs Lakshanie Fernando, outgoing General Secretary of the Ceylon Bible Society and her husband. Incidentally she was also the first woman head of the CBS in its 190 year old history. Mrs. Fernando addressed the gathering on the theme for the year "Be my witnesses - Towards a Mission Centred Church in the Power of the Holy Spirit."
In his annual Charge to the assembly, Bishop Dhiloraj Canagasabey speaking on the theme emphasized that Mission was God's and that God has called us to partner Him in this task. "Where there is no Mission there is no Church and where there is nether Church nor Mission there is no Faith" he said. The full text of the Bishop's address can be found by following this link
Councillors made up of the clergy and elected representatives from all parishes in the Diocese of Colombo met in Council over the next two days in worship, prayer and study and to discuss the Report of the Standing Committee of the Diocese of 2016/17 and to elect new representatives to the Standing Committee 2017/18, as well as to several other bodies.
A number of Resolutions were also brought before the house and were adopted. They related to the the celebration of the bi-centennial of the arrival of CMS missionaries to the island in 1818; A call to for the diocese and parishes to mark World Environment Day 2019 by carrying out a mass campaign to plant and nurture trees; To commemorate the contribution of plantation workers to the Tea Industry over the past 150 years; To appoint a committee to study the proposals presented to the Constitutional Assembly and to build awareness and understanding of these within parishes.
2017 also marked the 150th anniversary of the continuous publication of the "Ceylon Churchman" - the magazine of the Church of Ceylon. The event was marked by the presentation to the Bishop, the Chief Guests and Archdeacons, of a commemorative booklet published by the Board of the Ceylon Churchman.