On Sunday, September 17, Bishop John Stephens paid an episcopal visit to his parish of Holy Cross, Vancouver for their patronal festival day. Joining the bishop was Christ Church Cathedral’s, Deacon for Diversity, the newly ordained deacon, the Reverend Kevin de la Mare.

The vicar of the parish, the Reverend Alecia Greenfield led the bishop and deacon on a walk through the parish’s stunning memorial garden and ran across some baby raccoons (Mother Alecia used the descriptive term ‘adorable’ in her notes to diocesan comms, which they kind of are, but…) waiting for their mother huddled in the ceiling of the gate. The theme of Bishop John’s sermon was the Feast of Holy Cross (Celebrated on September 14, transferred to Sunday September 17 for this liturgy). 

Following a tasty Japanese potluck meal, Bishop John sat down with the community to hear their worries, their excitement for the future, and all gathered were enthusiastic in their gratitude for God’s grace and care for the Parish of Holy Cross. 

This article prepared with files and images provided by Alecia Greenfield


  • The vicar and bishop pause for a photo in the Holy Cross Memorial Garden Photo Submitted 
  • A view of the Memorial Garden on a beautiful late summer’s day Photo Bishop John Stephens 
  • Holy Cross parishioner, Sally with the Reverend Kevin de la Mare Photo Submitted
  • Another view of the Memorial Garden Photo Bishop John Stephens
  • Deacon and vicar Photo Bishop John Stephens
  • The baby raccoons huddle in the gate’s ceiling Photo Bishop John Stephens  
  • The after - lunch dialogue with the bishop Photo Submitted