A big and happy celebration happened on Sunday, May 8 at St. Oswald’s, Port Kells. Bishop Melissa Skelton visited, along with Deacon, the Reverend Eileen Nurse of St. George’s, Fort Langley. Bishop Skelton’s husband the Reverend Eric Stroo, a deacon of the Episcopal Diocese of Olympia was at St. Oswald’s as well. Bishop Melissa confirmed nine members of the parish, who ranged in age from 14 to 89! The newly Confirmed are: Charles Cook, Alicia Craig, Elvin Craig, Andrew Hale, Laura Hale, Kenneth Hoffman, Brianna Huber, Edward Knight and Eileen Knight. It was a joyous occasion, as these parishioners affirmed their Christian faith in this public act. This followed upon their time of preparation which had begun last October, and included the Diocesan Confirmation Preparation Day in April.
Along with two other gifts (including a birdhouse likeness of St. Oswald’s), hand-crafted by artisans in the congregation, Bishop Melissa was presented with a cheque for the Bishop’s Fund for Refugee Resettlement in the amount of $700. This had been raised by a special offering conducted during the previous two months.
The festive occasion continued with a lunch in the Parish Hall for all in attendance, which included many family members and friends of those being confirmed. The Bishop then met with the leadership of the parish and others in a circle, for conversation about the life and ministry of St. Oswald’s. She conveyed her and the diocesan staff’s availability and support.
The church, Parish Hall, lovely grounds and cemetery of St. Oswald’s were all furbished for the special day, with flowering shrubs and trees in blossom. The parish is grateful to Bishop Melissa, Deacon Eric and Deacon Eileen, for their visit and ministry!
Many thanks to photographer and parishioner Ian McDonald for these fabulous photographs:
- The Bishop with all the Confirmands, deacon, bishop's chaplain, priest in charge and warden
- Confirmand Eileen Knight shares the reading from the Hebrew Bible
- Bishop with Confirmand/Crucifer Brianna Huber
- Elvin Craig reads the Epistle
- Ken Knutson presents Bishop Skelton with the stylized St Oswald's birdhouse