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Come as you are: Bishops

Anglican bishops in ecclesiastical vestments invited thousands of bleary-eyed commuters back to church during a campaign at Union Station Thursday — with at least one being mistaken for a common salesman.

Anglican bishops in ecclesiastical vestments invited thousands of bleary-eyed commuters back to church during a campaign at Union Station Thursday — with at least one being mistaken for a common salesman.

The sight of Archbishop Colin Johnson dressed in his vestments and mitre and handing out cards outside the station was mistaken as “just another gimmick” by one man.

“There are guys here every single day handing out stuff,” said 34-year-old accountant Greg Hood, who added he thought it was “pretty cool” that Johnson is the Anglican archbishop of Toronto.

After all, it’s not everyday you see an archbishop extolling heavenly virtues just metres away from headless mannequins wearing suits and salesmen handing out flyers.

Hood did take a card, but not the one from the archbishop. The one Hood held promoted deals at merchants and restaurants in Toronto.

Anglican bishops were also at GO Train stations in Barrie, Oshawa, Clarkson and Richmond Hill handing out the cards, which read: “Angry, bored, happy, lonely, tired, stressed — come as you are. The Anglican Church welcomes you back to church.”

The goal is to heighten awareness that the church and religious faith are important, Johnson said, adding people can return to church or attend for the first time, no matter what their faith.

Banker Paul Richards of Ajax did accept one of Johnson's cards.

“It’s a good thing that they’re doing because sometimes people get so secular that they don’t know God is in the picture,” said Richards, who said he was a Seventh-day Adventist who attends church on Saturdays.

 
 
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