Leave a Message for our Grads and Companion

Leave a Message for our Grads and Companion

This upcoming weekend is a big one for the Centre for Christian Studies.  This is the weekend when we celebrate the graduation of five students who have completed their training in diaconal ministry – Vicky Aldersley, Mary Elliott, Kimiko Karpoff, Debra Kigar, and Mary Elizabeth Piercy.  It’s also the weekend when we celebrate Mary Ellen Moore for her contributions to ministry, the church, and the Centre for Christian Studies by naming her as a Companion of the Centre.

The celebrations take place this Saturday night at a banquet, and Sunday afternoon (3 pm) at a worship service being held at St. George’s Crescentwood Anglican church in Winnipeg.

Mary Ellen is from Red Deer, Alberta.  Vicky comes from Oakville, Ontario.  Kimiko comes from New Westminster, BC.  Mary Elizabeth is from Bracebridge, Ontario, and both Mary and Deb are from Hamilton, Ontario.  No doubt they have friends and supporters from all over who would like to express their congratulations and best wishes.  Here is your opportunity!

Leave a comment below for any of our grads and Companion (or all of them as a group!).  Let them know you’re thinking about them and wishing them well.

(If you would like to send a greeting but you don’t want the whole world to see it, you can email Scott at info@ccsonline.ca and he will pass it along to the appropriate person.)

Comments: 44

  1. Tammy Allan says:

    To Vicky, Mary, Kimiko, Debra, and Mary,
    Congratulations on all you have achieved! May this weekend be filled with joy! Blessings and peace,
    Tammy Allan

    To Mary Ellen,
    Congratulations to you, as you join the circle of fine and wonderful people that are Companions of the Centre! Blessings to you!
    Tammy Allan

  2. Richard Schabler says:

    (pre) Congradulations Kimiko!

    I’m very happy for you, and proud to see you taking this great step into the Ministry of our Lord.
    It’s truly your calling; the world will be changed whereever you are. Enjoy the moment.

    Love and Blessings,

  3. Wendy Lowden says:

    Congratulations to all of you! Your achievement is a blessing to every heart and mind you will touch and change during your ministries! Deb….is it really years ago we were meeting in all those waiting rooms for interviews?
    Have a fantasic, well deserved celebration!
    Wendy Lowden

  4. Laurel Walton says:

    Hello and many blessings as you move into the next stage/phase/facet of your ministries!

    May you walk in grace,

    Laurel (LDM, August 2010 and partner of a CCS graduate)

  5. Lesley Kigar says:

    God bless you and congratulations! I can’t believe it is time to move now 🙁 but I can’t wait to watch you learn and grow on this new journey in your life! Wish I could be there to share in this moment but know you are uin my thoughts and prayers and I can’t wait to see and here all about it when you return!! Xxxooo we love you!

  6. Sue Cowan says:

    To all the graduates, many blessings as you are affirmed in your callings and celebrate this milestone in your ministries! A special shout out to Debra & Mary Elizabeth… both wonderful women who have touched my life and blessed it with their compassion, enthusiasm, care, insights, and joy!

    Enjoy this amazing weekend! Feel the presence of the Spirit dancing in you, around you and through you… and feel the warm embrace of all of us who are holding you in prayer at this special time!

    I give thanks to the Creator for each of you and for the gifts you are sharing with our church and communities across the country.

    Have a wonderful celebration!!! ENJOY!!!

    Your sister in faith,

    Sue Cowan – Minister (DLM)
    Emmanuel UC, Brampton, ON

  7. Wade Lifton says:


    Some words for you from John O’Donohue:

    May your words have the prophetic edge
    To enable the heart to hear itself.

    May the silence where your calling dwells
    Forster your freedom in all you do and feel.

    May you find words full of divine warmth
    To clothe the dying in the language of dawn.

    May the slow light of the Eucharist
    Be a sure shelter around your future.

  8. paul & finn says:

    cheers to Kimiko and all!!!

    love, paul & finn

  9. Jane and Fraser says:

    Dear Kimiko : What a well deserved and exciting celebration awaits you and your colleagues this week as you graduate. Congratulations to you all !!! It has been an honour to know you these past years throughout the course of your studies. It has always been interesting and insightful to hear you share about your experiences in this program whether it be one on one over coffee or during a worship service or other faith activity. And I ( Jane) truly valued and benefited from being a part of your local committeee for some of that time. I felt that those opportunities to work with you provided not only the chance to learn from you (as you grew and developed) but the chance as well to learn about a program that was very special in its approach , and to grow spiritually from that as well. There are so many postive memories of church that I can tie to your participation in this educational journey Kimiko, and so many ways that you have given to others.Thank you and many blessings as you move in faith from this place to the next. Well done! – love from Jane and Fraser

  10. Catherine Gutjahr says:

    Blessings Vicky, Mary, Kimiko, Debra, and Mary as you continue your journey in ministry. May your continue to share the gift that your are where ever you may go.
    Catherine Gutjahr

  11. Janet Jones says:

    Dearest Grads,
    Congratulations!!!!!! Your journey is getting into a new phase which we know you’ll succeed at, as God is leading you… special wishes to Debra and Mary Elizabeth.
    Blessings in all that you do, all that you say, wherever you go…

  12. Lyn Workman says:

    Thanks for the opportunity to have gotten to know all of you in some way. You are all wonderful women and will be a blessing to those to whom you minister to and with. Yahoo!

  13. Debbie Stockdale says:

    Mary and Mary Elizabeth, I am remembering our LDM when we were all so overwhelmed to start with and ended up so close by the end. Congratulations on finishing this leg of your ministry journey!!

    May you have a blessed celebration this weekend and may your ministry, where ever that is, be spirit filled. Love, Debbie

  14. Debbie Stockdale says:

    Vicky, Mary, Kimiko, Debra, and Mary Elizabeth,

    May your grad be filled with joy, celebrating the wonderful women that you are!

    Sending spiraling love and prayers your way, Debbie Stockdale

  15. Mike Stockdale says:

    Congratulations! A great moment to celebrate all the hard work and perseverance to reach this milestone. Now the fun part begins 🙂

  16. Kathleen Vanderlinden says:

    Debra Kigar, I am so proud of you. You will be great.As you go along lifes an Gods journey just know how many people love you. Your sense of laughter and grace are infectious. I wish I could be there to give you a big hug. I will be there in Spirit. Blessings. Kathleen Vanderlinden

  17. Linda Clark says:

    Debra, enjoy these moments … it’s been a good, long journey, and I’m privileged to have been walking it with you. I will really miss our chats at My Dog Joe’s. Many blessings to you and the rest of your class on your graduation day. Wish I could have been there. Here’s a hug anyhow …

  18. Lynn Hamilton says:

    Congratulations to you all! (esp my sisters from the Hammer and Horseshoe) Well done all! Your ministries will bless the whole people of God and the particular ministries you serve. Have a joyous celebration!
    peace and blessings, sisters.
    Lynn Hamilton

  19. Leslie Steinberg says:

    Hi Deb,
    Congratulations! I am so proud of you and I look forward to sharing, hearing all about your future endeavours as you grow in the ministry. You are a terrific person and friend and I’ll miss you when you move!
    Enjoy the celebration on Saturday, you so deserve it!
    Love Les

  20. Hi Kimiko,
    Congratulations!! The day has finally come! We celebrate with you. We are grateful for you. We are thankful that we live in a church that sees someone like you, with your gifts, skills and convictions and asks you to lead. It gives us hope and courage. May this time be blessing and joy.
    With love from the Northwood Community

  21. pat vinton says:

    good afternoon deb, and greetings to all the grads….. what a privilege it is to be able to send prayers and best wishes to you five wonderful women. it must be with mixed feelings that you approach your graduation….. with anticipation for the future journey, and some sadness around saying “good bye” to friends. all of you have had a network of supporters and prayer partners as you have studied and participated in this phase of your spiritual walk, and now it is time to move forward. may i join the others who have posted their good wishes and say “Godspeed” to you all and may you continue to carry the Light”. bless you, deb…. i will be thinking of you on the 3rd. talk soon…. ms.v.

  22. Barbara Morrison says:

    Hi Deb … Way to go!!! I know how much hard work you put into this and all the faithfulness and spirit you’ve shared with others. You have always been a blessing to our church and now, with this new ministry, I think an even greater blessing! Go boldly! And enjoy these days.

  23. Basil Fitze says:

    Congratulations Kimiko,

    Have a great celebration this weekend. My prays go with you and your fellow students. What a great achievement.

  24. Mary Nichol says:

    We send you blessings as you celebrate the culmination of this part of your journey. We celebrate you and all of the gifts you offer this church and our world. Congratulations! May you be filled with light and love as you celebrate this weekend. Love Mary, Ken and girls

  25. Casey and Gail Hoevenaars says:

    Congratulations to all of you!
    Deb Kigar- We are so proud of you..your faith, your courage, your ability to accept this challenge that God has given you, and give your gifts freely back to the people of God! God has also given you a spouse that will support you in this journey. You are blessed. You are loved.
    We love you.
    Uncle Casey & Aunt Gail

  26. Nicky Didicher says:

    Congratulations to all of you–well done!
    Kimiko, lots of love and good wishes
    from Nicky

  27. Ingrid Andrey says:

    Congratulations, Kimiko!

    What an accomplishment–we’re so proud of you. It must feel so good to have achieved this huge milestone. We’re blessed to know you. Have fun!
    Ingrid, Trevor, and the kids.

  28. Shirley Shikaze says:

    Congratulations Vicky! We’re so proud of you and happy that you’ve completed this part of your journey. Wish all the grads success in their ministries.

    Have a great celebration……… Happy drumming Bob!
    Love and Blessings, Kim & Shirley

  29. Christopher C. Hunt says:

    Dear Deb,
    Congratulations and best wishes! And looking forward to your next visit to First-Pilgrim.
    Chris H.

  30. Jennifer Greene says:


    Congratulations. I know you have worked very hard, and have sacrificed times with family to reach this goal.

    In my earlier years, you encouraged me in my journey of faith. You shared with me by having me help you prepare lesson work for the Sunday School class you were teaching. You gave me my first Bible. Thank you for that, and for being a great sister.

    Now, I pray for you, that you will continue your Spiritual Journey, in faith in our Risen Lord, Jesus Christ. That you will walk in Truth and in Love. That you will not fear, but in truth, boldly share the Word of God, the Salvation of Christ, our Lord. I pray that God will bless you and your family with His Peace, which passes understanding. Amen

    Your name means “conqueror”, “triumphant spirit”. Along with this is the scripture verse, Philipians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

    On your graduation, may you be blessed. Enjoy your day, and having Bob there to share it with you.


  31. Marybeth Kgiar says:

    Congratulations to you all!
    A special congrats to Deb. We are all so proud of you mom! Wish we could be there to celebrate this wonderful occasion but we will be thinking of you on Sunday. We look forward to the beginning of this new adventure for you. All of our love,
    Marybeth and Tom

  32. Kimberly Hayek says:

    Your faith has energy, caring and respect for all people.

    Congradulations and see you soon.

  33. Estelle Cormier says:

    Congratulations and blessings at this event, and as you begin the next section of the adventure! May you continue to grow and leave the mark of your faith on the world around you.
    Love from Estelle

  34. Stephanie Piercy says:

    Hi mom!
    Congratulations on graduating!
    Over the journey of the last few years we’ve watched your transformation into becoming a minister, a role which develops, emphasizes, and utilizes all of who you are.
    As a daughter looking on, it seems as if this career in ministry, whatever path it takes in the future, is a role that has been waiting for you all your life, and the completion of this degree symbolizes and gives a name to this new, full bodied element of yourself that will be with you always.

    Like a lot of young people, my husband John views organized religion in a stereotypical and negative light, however, this view has been challenged and changed by the example you present of a religious person in his life. Your welcoming, candid, and intelligent engagement with the world through your faith delivers again and again the most promising and positive message about the United Church. Thanks for being the proof in the pudding, mom. Congratulations again on completing the degree!

  35. Bill MacKinnon says:

    and God Bless the Revolution!

  36. James and Jen-Beth Fulton says:

    Dear Kimiko,
    On behalf of all at Mount Seymour UnIted Church, James and I send
    congratulations on accomplishing such a transformative goal. This is an exciting time in the life of humanity and our search for authentic Spirituality in Community. Spong says it best: “The mission of faith is no longer to convert: it is to transform the world so that every life will have a better chance to live fully and thus to commune with the source of life; to love wastefully and thus to commune with the source of love, and to find the “courage to be” and thus to commune with the Ground of Being. The task of the church is not to make us religious, but to make us human, to make us whole, to free us to be able to escape our survival mentality, and to give our lives away. That is the new being to which we are called. That is what I believe Christianity must evolve into becoming. That is also what I now see as the meaning of Jesus. “Eternal Life: New Vision.” Peace be to you and all you serve, and who serve you.
    James and Jen-Beth, on behalf of Mt.Seymour United Church

  37. James and Jen-Beth Fulton says:

    Dear Mary Ellen,
    It was wonderful to see and recognise your face and name from “Naramata Good Works Week” Congratulations. It is no surprise to us that you would be so honored by your / our church. You feel like such a close connection with Southminster and Mary Thomas – a mentor for each of us.
    Peace be on you,
    James and Jen-Beth Fulton from Mt. Seymour United Church, Notrh Vancouver

  38. Karen Piercy and Sabrina Thambiah says:

    Dear Mary Elizabeth (mom)
    Congratulations on completion of this spiritual and personal journey. We are very proud of you. You were able to take on this challenge and see it through. You are an inspiration to your children and grandchildren!
    We love you very much.
    Love Sabrina and Karen

  39. Kim and Rick Shantz says:

    To Vicky, Mary, Kimiko, Debra and Mary Elizabeth…I want to offer my prayers and congrads to you all, as you close one window and prepare to walk through another door…Spiral on!

    To Vicky… I am so very proud of you and all that you have accomplished. It has been a privilege to walk with you as your mentor and I give thanks for all that you have taught me over the years about faith, unconditional love, strength through vulnerablity and so much more! I am so sorry I am unable to be there this weekend as I am guest speaking at the UCW Presbyterial this Saturday. Know that your name, as well as the names of your fellow grads will be raised and the whole UCW in Halton Presbytery will be celebrating with you from afar, this day.
    Love and peace
    Kim Shantz

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  41. Congratulations to all of you. I believe the training you receive is the best preparation for congregational ministry that exists. What an accomplishment and how blessed we are to recieve your gifts and steadfast commitment.

    The whole congregation of St. James in Etobicoke wraps Vicky in our love, joy and support. We know you are a fantastic minister. I also have nostalgic memories of Mary Piercy from her days in Erin. I am so glad you have completed this leg of the journey and are ready to share your inspiration more widely.

    Blessings to you all, and may you be assured that the God who calls you will lead you forward.

    With joy and gratitude, Coral Prebble

  42. Karla, Troy & Meghan says:

    Dearest Mary,
    Congratulations on your graduation! so many years watching you go through this and always admiring you for making your passion come true!
    We love you and we are VERY proud of you 🙂
    Thank you for sharing this website with me and congratulations to all the graduates.
    Karla Troy & Meghan McGuire-De Uslar

  43. Eydie Zuk says:

    Deb Kigar, Congratulations on all you have accomplished! You are in my heart, thoughts and prayers. I can imagine the excitment you must feel with your upcoming new adventure. Blessings to you always, Eydie

  44. Eydie Zuk says:

    Mary Elliott, what a blessing you are! Congratulations on your wonderful achievement! You have listened to God calling you and followed your guidance in the direction that has filled your heart. You are a gift to all who know you and to the LLWL program. Thank you for being supportive to me. I wish you all the joy, happiness, love and success in the world. I know God will hold you lovingly and tenderly for whatever is ahead in the journey.

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