A Prayer for the Church

We will keep practicing love until we get it right:

 Drawn to the round table, living in life-centered diversity of community

We will keep celebrating the sacred until we embody it.

In authenticity and prayer, an embodiment of Christ, an embodiment of spirituality

We will keep calling for justice until it prevails.

As a critical yet hopeful, prophetic minority

Following a deeper understanding of the way of the cross.

 We will keep longing for kin(g)dom until kin(g)dom comes.

 Teaching love and justice, making earth like heaven.

                                                            Written by Bob McMillan, Jacqueline Samson, gwen McAllister, Ted Dodd and Alice Watsonm

                                                            April 2011 Spring Learning Circle Educational Ministry Year

Annual Service of Celebration

This Sunday (April 3rd) at 3pm at St. George’s Anglican Church Crescentwood, 168 Wilton Street, Winnipeg, the Centre for Christian Studies holds its annual Service of Celebration to acknowledge the students who are graduating from the Diploma in Diaconal Ministries program this year, and to honour Mary Ellen Moore who is being named a Companion of the Centre.  All  are welcome.  If you’d like to leave a congratulatory message for the grads or companion, please feel free.

We have posted video and audio from the service.  You can click here to listen to an MP3 of the Service of Celebration (or right click to save the target to your computer).  [Apologies – the sound quality is not as good as I would have liked.]  Here is the order of service, if you’d like to follow along at home!

Here is the graduation and the blessing of the grads from the Saturday night banquet:

A reflection on the absurdity of being called to diaconal ministry, by the grads at the Annual Service of Celebration:

Acknowledgement of the graduates and presentation of grad pins and towels.  (The towel is a traditional symbol of diaconal ministry.) :

Honouring the 2011 Companion of the Centre – Mary Ellen Moore:

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.)

Pray For Us

The Integrating Year Learning Circle starts tomorrow as final year CCS students enter their last two weeks before graduation.  Next week Thursday the Educational Ministry Learning Circle will arrive for two weeks of learning.  That Friday (April 1, no joke) the members of the CCS Central Council will be gathering in Winnipeg for two days of meeting.  Then on Saturday is a grad banquet and introduction to the Companion of the Centre – Mary Ellen Moore, followed by the CCS Annual Service of Celebration on Sunday at 3pm (St. George’s Anglican Church, 168 Wilton).  Seriously, for the next three or four weeks, this joint is going to be jumping!

If ever we needed your prayers, it’s now.

The Centre for Christian Prayer Cycle is an invitation for friends and supporters of CCS to keep us in your prayers in an intentional and sustained way.  The prayer cycle focuses on a different part of the CCS community each month (eg. students, staff, volunteers, alumni, etc.).  You can pray for us anything, and whenever you feel like it, but if you’re looking for a day, why not on or around the 26th of each month.  (The 26th of December is the feast day of St. Stephen, one of the earliest diaconal ministers,  and from that the worldwide diaconal community has taken the 26th of each month as a significant day of remembering the gift and the calling of diakonia.)

You can download the CCS prayer cycle from the CCS website or directly from here.

Anglican Friends of CCS, Please Join Us

Thursday March 31 from 4 -5:30 pm at the Centre for Christian Studies (Woodsworth House, 60 Maryland St.) we invite you to join us for punch and conversation about the work of our school.

Council Co-Chairs, Jim Boyles from Toronto and Carolynne Bouey-Shank from Calgary, Anglican Council members from across the country, and Charlotte Caron, Acting Principal of CCS will be in attendance.

RSVP Charlotte at ccaron@ccsonline.ca or Liz at 204 783 4490.

Arts & Hospitality Podcast

The podcast from last month’s Mindful Munchin’ presentation by barb janes on The Arts and Hospitality is now available.  Barb spent her sabbatical researching various ways that churches have formed hospitable relationships with the arts and artists.  She is working on a book (maybe) which will be called (maybe) “Inviting Wonder” (maybe).  She accompanied her presentation with slides from the Refinery at St. James Anglican in Saskatoon, Old Stone Church and Trinity Cathedral in Cleveland, and Trinity St. Paul United in Toronto.

The audio podcast of this presentation is now available.  Just right-click on the link below (ctrl-click if you’re on Mac without a right click button) and choose “Save target as…”  Or you can just click the link and it will play in your browser.  The podcast is a 47 minutes MP3 (25 MB).

“The Arts & Hospitality”

The next Mindful Munchin’ is tomorrow with Amy Crawford discussing Children’s Spirituality.

Marc Desrosiers – Development and Community Relations

The Centre for Christian Studies is pleased to announce that Marc Desrosiers will be joining our staff on March 15 as the Development and Community Relations Coordinator.  Marc has many years of development experience.  Most recently he has served as Director of Development and Alumni, The Salvation Army Booth University College in Winnipeg.  Previously he has worked for Lutheran and Roman Catholic fund raising projects, as well as for University of Manitoba, Brandon University and the Red Cross.  CCS has long used a relational style of fund raising and alumni/ae relations which makes Marc a good fit.  He is highly trained, experienced and award-winning in the fields of Philanthropy, Alumni Relations and Institutional Management at the University College level.  We are delighted to welcome Marc to our team!

Marion Pope is Alive!

OK, this is not news to anybody, least of all to Marion herself, but an error in an early draft of the CCS annual report had her included among the list of CCS alumni and friends who had passed away in 2010.  We corrected this mistake fairly quickly, but not before a couple of people read her name there and were suprised.  Luckily they had the wherewithal to check first before sending flowers and letters of condolence.

Marion was honoured as a Companion of the Centre in 2003 and has been a good friend of CCS.  We take this opportunity to celebrate Marion and the fact that “rumours of her death are greatly exaggerated” and to apologize for the mix up.

Children’s Spirituality

Our next Mindful Munchin’ lunchtime lecture will be with Amy Crawford, Program Minister Children and Youth at the General Council Office.  Learnabout aspects of children’s spirituality.  Discuss how well the church is doing in the area of children’s spiritual development . Receive some guidelines to assess your current programs and how your church might better nurture the spirituality of children.

Bring a bag lunch!

RSVP to Liz: lbachmann@ccsonline.ca

For those not in Winnipeg, the events are normally available within a week or so after the event as a podcast.

Banquet tickets

Final year students at CCS are eagerly awaiting the weekend of April 2-3.  We anticipate a great celebration that weekend to give thanks for the completion of the program by final year students and to recognize Mary Ellen Moore as a Companion of CCS.  The Annual Service of Celebration will take place at St. George’s Anglican Church, 168 Wilton St., Winnipeg on Sunday, April 3 at 3 PM.  All are welcome to attend. 

Anyone wanting tickets to the Saturday evening banquet or wanting to send greetings to the graduates should contact info@ccsonline.ca

United Church Ministry Statement

Our diaconal colleague Denise Davis-Taylor who sits on the Theology Inter Church Interfaith Committee of General Council of the UCC asks that the updated Statement of Ministry report be sent to the wide CCS community for response.  The draft statement is available at http://www.unitedchurch.ca/communications/news/general/110131 

Denise notes:

You will see that this paper continues to focus on functions of ministry which we (Diakonia) have tried to broaden to include approach, ethos, focus, philosophy over the years. It wouldn’t hurt to use this opportunity to raise these issues and any others you have in response to this most recent attempt to define the difference between the streams of Ministry in the United Church of Canada.

Staff Changes

Last month we said goodbye to CCS Community Resource Coordinator Glenda Knoll.  As you may know, Glenda has moved on from CCS to work with the Mosaic Newcomer Resource Centre.  We certainly appreciate her warmth and commitment, and we wish her well.

The Human Resources has hired a new staffperson for that position – which is now known as the Development and Community Relations Coordinator – and we should be able to announce that person’s name soon.

Annual Report

The Annual Meeting is next Wednesday.  If you’re interested in the Centre for Christian Studies, you might want to think about attending.  It starts at 6:00 pm (Manitoba time), with friends of the Centre gathered in Winnipeg and many more joining in by conference call from all over Canada.  And this just in:

Anglicans attend for free!

OK, it’s actually free for everyone.  But we always have a little push to get Anglicans to come, since our quorum for the meeting requires at least 5 Anglican participants and at least 5 United Church participants.  UCC folks are easy to round up.  You can’t shake a stick without hitting one or two United Church people around here (who will understandably say, “Hey, stop shaking that stick at me”), but making sure we have enough Anglican representation is sometimes a trickier task.

The 2010 Annual Report of the Centre for Christian Studies is available for downloading and online viewing.  Check it out.  It was a busy year!

Principal Search

CCS is looking for a Principal.  Know anybody with deep commitments to justice, to the empowering of others through transformative learning, and to a collaborative, collegial and non-hierarchical work-style?  Check out the job posting on the CCS website for more info.