Mandarin Service at St. Anselm's Gets a New Year's Boost
By Shirin Theophilus, ODNW
A tri- parish planning meeting was called on April 3rd 2014, by the Reverend Dr. Pitman Potter, Deacon at St. Helen’s, Point Grey to brain storm the birth of a Mandarin service. After a series of discussions and meetings and with the involvement of the Reverend Paulina Lee, rector of St. Chad’s in the Arbutus basin and other Point Grey Deanery and Vancouver Archdeaconry clergy & lay support, the inaugural Service was held at St. Anselm’s church on the 9th of September. Many worked very hard to select and evolve the publicity materials for the actual evensong service in Mandarin. The translation in English beside the Mandarin service enables everyone to be deeply engaged in the service. On an average, we would have 12 to 15 people attend every Tuesdays for this solemn service for which the music is provided by the St. Anselm’s music director, Tian Ip. The liturgical leadership is given by both clergy & laity under the direction of Rev. Paulina Lee and with the support of the priest in charge, Rev. Canon Dr. Harold Munn of St. Anselm’s.
The Tuesday evening begins with a mini reception hosted by different people at 6:00pm and the service starts at 6:30pm. Thanks to Vicky Potter for creating the rota for all responsibilities.
We at St. Anselm’s feel so blessed to ‘house’ the Mandarin service in our parish. We have appointed Ashly Tu as one of the student assistants (VST) who organized and prepared a fabulous New Year celebration on the 30th of December. We had fantastic home cooked Chinese dinner and prayers & singing. 24 people attended the event and new friendships were forged. Below is an excerpt from Ashly’s thought-provoking observations:
Tuesday Mandarin Evening Prayer had been happening since early September in 2014. However, till early December, there were not a lot of UBC students joining this service. I thought that the students may be buried in the school work during the term; New Year Celebration might be a good time to invite students to come and check out how friendly people are at St. Anselm's Anglican Church. This celebration was intended to be a feast of authentic Chinese foods and a fun party of joy, music and dance. My original plan was to cook for seven to eight people, and with the help of other volunteers, we may offer a feast for more. However, the tricky part was that we had no idea as to how much food we should prepare. On the other hand, we did two rounds of advertisements in order to invite more people to come for this event. In the end, we had 24 people joining this celebration. We indeed had a meaningful time together: with delicious food, joyful music, soul touching singing, fun games and celebrative dance. Even though most of the attendees were not new comers to St. Anselm's for either they attend local Anglican Churches or St. Anselm's Sunday morning worship, I believe that all who came tasted not only Chinese food, but the brotherly and sisterly love in Christ, and we all rejoice in the Lord for the blessings in the past year and in this New Year.”
Photos: The Banquet Buffet. Stephen Lim plays a Carol