Marion Pardy – a person of Eleos
On May 15, 2013 at an ecumenical evening of scripture and song, the Canadian Council of Churches launched the Eleos Award given to people who have shown a commitment to ecumenism and justice. CCS graduate (1968), The Very Rev. Dr. Marion Pardy, was one of the three recipients.
Marion Pardy, the 37th Moderator of The United Church of Canada, has demonstrated a passion for ecumenism, justice and peace through extensive inter-church, multi-faith and social justice activities within the province of Newfoundland, throughout Canada and the world. Following her term as Moderator (2000-2003), she was chosen as the United Church’s representative to the Governing Board of the Canadian Council of Churches. After one year there, she was elected Vice-President, a role she held until her term ended in 2009. During that time she was appointed to the St. John’s and Area Council of Churches, where she became president, concluding her second term this year. She attended the 9th General Assembly of the World Council of Churches, Porto Alegro, Brazil, in 2006.
Marion is a Director of the Religious Social Action Coalition, a multi-faith group in St. John’s with the goal of eliminating poverty in the Province and beyond. She is involved in several other social justice organizations, including Stella Burry* Community Services, an incorporated ministry of The United Church of Canada, and a leading social service agency, providing residential counseling, affordable housing and employment programs for some of the most disadvantaged citizens of the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Marion currently serves as the Chair of the Awards Committee at the Centre for Christian Studies and was the preacher at our 120th Anniversary Service in 2012 .
In March 2013, in recognition of her contribution to the community in these and other ways, the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador awarded Marion a Queen’s Jubilee Medal. The Eleos Award was presented by the Canadian Council of Churches (CCC) in May. The CCC is the largest ecumenical body in Canada, represented by twenty-five Churches of Anglican, Evangelical, Free Church, Eastern and Oriental Orthodox, Protestant and Catholic traditions which constitutes 85% of the Christians in Canada. The name of the award, “Eleos”, comes from a Greek word which is used in the beatitudes: “Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy” (Matthew 5:7, NRSV). The word is variously translated as mercy, compassion, empathy, forgiveness, kindness, beyond the law of justice or unmerited blessings. As a person of eleos, Marion is a fitting recipient of this award.
The Centre for Christian Studies congratulates Marion on her recognition.
*Stella Burry (1897-1991) was herself a United Church deaconess. To learn more about her work see this video.