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News of Week of November 4th

Dear Friend of the Cathedral

There are some compelling reasons to spend all day in the cathedral this Sunday, starting with the emotionally compelling Remembrance Day commemoration at the 10 am service with the Grenadier Guards in attendance. The bulletin reminds us that the cathedral is their regimental church and that the guards are Canada’s oldest militia unit. Paul is presiding at the service and Donald is preaching.

After coffee hour SJAG (the Social Justice Action Group) and the Quebec Presbytery Living Into Right Relations Group of the United Church of Canada are co-hosting a “blanket exercise”, an interactive way to understand the historic and contemporary relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada. KAIROS representative Sara Anderson will be our facilitator. A light lunch will be served from 12 or so. The exercise will start at 1:30 when we hope to be joined by people from other churches.

The event will finish soon after 3, in good time for people to move into the church for a special all Souls Requiem mass. The cathedral choir, directed by Patrick Wedd, will sing Charpentier’s Messe des morts. Names listed on the sign-up sheet which was at the back of the church will read during this service.

SJAG and the Quebec Presbytery Living Into Right Relations Group of the United Church of Canada are also co-hosting an event on Saturday, November 12, in Fulford Hall, 9:30 am – 1 pm. Dr Karl Hele will lead people in a time of learning, dialogue and relationship building as they discuss the Indian Act and attempt to answer the questions, “What is it?” and “Why should we care?”. He is Associate Professor and Director of First Peoples Studies, School of Public and Community Affairs at Concordia and a member of the Garden River First Nation community of the Ashinabeg people. Bring your own lunch – coffee, tea, water will be provided.

Please make a note of some important liturgical events coming soon:

Ø  Sunday, November 13, at 4:00pm: Collation of Canons to the Cathedral chapter and Ordination of Jean Daniel Williams to the diaconate. Reception to follow. Jean Daniel is the leader of the Hungry Minds group for young adults and students which meets on Wednesday evenings and also the organiser of the Sunday school, so I expect many of us will try to be present at the service.

Ø  Paul and Jonathan’s last Sunday with us will be on November 20th. There will a farewell reception for them on that day after the 10 am Eucharist, as well as after the 4pm Evensong. If you would like to contribute to a farewell gift, please put your contribution in the offertory, marked “Paul and Jonathan Farewell” or hand it to Les Stutzman.

Ø  Sunday 27 November at 4 pm, Music and Readings for Advent – a splendid service of light and darkness, advent music and readings.

And make another note of some “cultural” events:

Ø  Friday, November 11, 7:30 pm, the annual fund-raising concert organised by the music committee. The aim is to make $12000 to enable the choir to continue hiring professional musicians who give such great leadership to the singers. Compared with some other churches we pay our singers very little. It will be a terrific concert with all kinds of music, choral and instrumental inspired by the works of William Shakespeare, as well as some speeches performed by professional actors. Rosemary has also choreographed some Elizabethan dance. Tickets are available at coffee hour on Sunday, or at the front desk of the diocesan offices and can also be purchased at the door. $30 regular price, $25 seniors, $15 students. The ticket includes the concert and a wine and cheese reception afterwards.

Ø  The Oasis concert this Saturday features late Romantic music for clarinet, cello and piano and includes works by Fauré, Chausson, Piazzolla and Brahms.

Ø  The Oasis concert on November 19 will be a last chance to hear Jonathan play his flute in concert at the cathedral. He will be joined by Geneviève Beaudet, piano, Peggy Richardson, soprano and Donald Pistolesi, cello for a programme called “Visions of Modern Time.”

Ø  Saturday, December 10, 4:30pm Sing-Along Messiah. Add your voice to sing the glorious music of Handel’s Messaiah along with members of the cathedral choir, professional musicians and soloists under the direction of Patrick Wedd.

Ø  The cathedral reading group invites you to join them for egg nogg, a movie and discussion of the Course of Love by Alain de Botton on December 11. Please speak to Ann or Jane if you’re interested. We won’t be singing this night!

You might be interested in saving another date, the evening of December 5 for a bilingual Interfaith Gathering dedicated to youth which will discuss the question: ”Do sacred texts speak to the youth?: Social Media, is it a dangerous platform open to misinterpretation of the texts?” Speakers will be Emeritus Professor Gregory Baum, of McGill University, Rabbi Schachar Orenstein, Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue and Sheyk Imam Hamdi Ben Aissa, Directeur de Sanad Collective. The venue is the McGill Residence New Hall, 3625 av du Parc.

We are a praying community and it is a great blessing to hold up at our services those of our friends and family who are in need. Often, however, our prayers are answered but we forget to take the person’s name off the list. Episkopé has suggested that the name of a person in special need for whom prayers have been requested should be kept on the intercession list for one month and then automatically removed, unless a request is made to continue praying. Sometimes it is appropriate to move a name to the list of people asking for continuing support. This system won’t be put in place straight away. Over the next month I will be contacting all the people who have requested prayers for someone on our current list.

At this season it is good to be reminded that we are also a community of saints. I’m finishing this letter with 2 quotations about saints and a link to a poem by Malcolm Guite:

  1. “God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say. Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful: he makes saints out of sinners.” – Soren Kierkegaard
  2. “Keep in mind that our community is not composed of those who are already saints, but of those who are trying to become saints. Therefore let us be extremely patient with each other’s faults and failures.” – Mother Teresa

With best wishes

Ann Elbourne


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