Our annual Vestry meeting will be held this Sunday at 11am in the church. There will be regular services at 8am & 9:30am followed by our meeting. The 11:15am service returns next week.
Download a copy of the full vestry report here.
This year’s report from the rector reflects both the challenges and blessing of 2016 at St. George’s.
Indeed, 2016 brought some significant challenges.
The year started with 8 funerals in the first four months, including the tragic death of Zach Sutherland. It is with great faith that we commit our loved ones to God’s keeping and it is with the love and compassion as a community that we support and uphold those who grieve with our prayers and with our presence. I am grateful for the pastoral care and outpouring of compassion that demonstrated how we, as a church, are ready stand with and support those who grieve even as we grieve ourselves.
Musically, we have faced some further challenges. It was our hope to have been able to hire a music director this year, but the financial resources have not permitted this. That said, I am truly grateful that in 2016 we were blessed by the commitment of the choir and the 11:15 music team. We also had support from Darlene Hammond, who volunteered to help the choir with a number of anthems, and from Chris Dawes, who as an organist supply prepared the choir and played at Easter, Pentecost, and Christmas.
After the overwhelming support shown financially to replace the heating system in 2015, our hope was to focus on general stewardship and support for our ongoing ministry. It was our intention to be build up our base of regular financial support to allow us to be in a position to hire a music director to replace Ron Greidanus. I am grateful to those that were able to respond positively to this year’s stewardship campaign, but overall we were unable to gain ground. This was due to the unexpected loss of support from folks who moved or passed away. With our hard work and the dedicated support from so many good people and families here at St. George’s, being unable to move ahead and seek a replacement for music director, has been a disappointment.
2016 also was a year where we, despite these challenges, continued to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ in word and deed.
I am extremely proud of the volunteer commitment of the people of this community and the good work that the gifts of time and talent offered by so many good folk. As a church we continue to offer over 11,000 hours of volunteer time to enable worship and to do good works. Our Worship is supported by mesh of volunteers, from the Altar Guild behind the scenes to the faces you see up front on Sunday reading, praying, serving, and singing. Our work in the wider community is given form by the teams of volunteers who help with the Fresh Food Box, The Walk for ALS, the summer Kid’s Camp program, and Messy Church.
I am thankful for the continued leadership of Ian Oldaker, Paul Skuriat, Mark Kohler, and Jan Lehman as church wardens, and Brenda Sisnett as treasurer. They are caring, kind, and wise in demonstrating their leadership and show respect for the trust you and I have given them in these roles.
I am grateful for the ministry of The Rev’d Nancy Rowe and her ministry with our church families, through baptism, the First Step’s program, Church School, and Messy Church. Her leadership and care has help build a network of care that extends our reach and expresses the joy of Christ to our youngest members and their parents.
I also greatly appreciative of the support, presence, and work of Sue Graham in the church office and other administrative duties. Her experience and her long standing relationships with so many church members make her presence irreplaceable.
In 2017, we will need to grow monthly support of ministry if we are to be able to consider hiring a replacement for the important position of music director. This will be a big boost to the 9:30 choir and the 11:15 music team, and our music ministry in general.
In 2017, there are some important property projects to tackle which are highlighted in our hardworking Property Committee’s report.
Most importantly, in 2017, I pray that we will continue to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ both through our many faceted ministry as a parish family, but also in each of the lives of our parish members. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, we may together reflect that Good News to our neighbours, families, and co-workers.
The Rev’d Canon Robert W.A. Park