The original covenant text was signed on behalf of the Diocese of Qu’Appelle and the Archdiocese of Regina on January 23, 2011 by Bishop Gregory Kerr-Wilson and Archbishop Daniel Bohan.
Ecumenical covenants have been an important catalyst for local ecumenical communities. There are many covenants between congregations or parishes of various traditions. There are a number of examples of covenants between Anglican and Roman Catholic dioceses, and a few that include Lutheran synods. The acronyms ARC, LRC, and LARC are frequently used for these. The LAURC Covenant in Saskatchewan appears to be the first covenant including an Eastern Catholic eparchy.
An ecumenical covenant is not intended to be an exclusive relationship. It is hoped that our churches will continue to foster close relations with all faith communities in their neighbourhoods, and that where appropriate these will blossom into a renewed covenantal relationship. Our covenant is intended to be a witness to the unity we already share in Christ and to our commitment to work together to give this visible expression.
“Among the many ways that churches have found to express our growth in communion, covenants have a particular place. Beyond the most basic sense as a mutual agreement or contract, the biblical understanding of covenant is of a relationship initiated by God; a promise to which God remains faithful despite the failures and transgressions of the people. A covenant serves to sustain and nurture an established ecumenical partnership. It requires a fundamental commitment to working, praying, and acting together in response to God’s call, yet it is not the final stage of life in communion. We engage in this covenant as a pledge of faithfulness and in hope of the full visible unity to which we are called” (LAURC Covenant, p. 2).
The new LAURC Covenant was signed by the 10 bishops in Saskatchewan (alphabetically):
Bishop Bryan Bayda, Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Saskatoon
Archbishop Donald Bolen, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Regina
Archbishop Murray Chatlain, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Keewatin-Le Pas
Bishop Mark Hagemoen, Roman Catholic Diocese of Saskatoon
Bishop Adam Halkett, Bishop of Missinippi, Anglican Diocese of Saskatchewan
Bishop Robert Hardwick, Anglican Diocese of Qu’Appelle
Bishop Christopher Harper, Anglican Diocese of Saskatoon
Bishop Sid Haugen, Saskatchewan Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
Bishop Michael Hawkins, Anglican Diocese of Saskatchewan
Bishop Albert Thévenot, Roman Catholic Diocese of Prince Albert
The territory encompassed by the new covenant includes the entire civil province of Saskatchewan.