Judy Graves cited for work with Vancouver's homeless

Judy Graves, a parishioner at St. James, Vancouver, has been selected by the BC Civil Liberties Association for the Reg Robson Award in March.

Graves has worked with Vancouver's street population since 1974, and in the Downtown Eastside since 1979. She coordinates the Tenant Assistance Program at City Hall, serving low-income tenants and the homeless.

The association cited her for "personally ensuring the life, liberty and security of our society's most marginalized citizens." It gives the award annually. Previous winners include Maher and Monia Arar and Mayor Philip Owen (of St. John's, Shaughnessy).

The Rev. Alexis Saunders was appointed Priest-in-Charge of St. Oswald's, Port Kells, last month by the Bishop. She had been the assistant priest at Holy Trinity, White Rock. The former priest at St. Oswald's, Paul Guiton, is now rector of St. Dunstan's, Aldergrove.

The Rev. Susan Foley-Currie is now the temporary Priest-in-Charge at St. Alban's, Burnaby effective May 1st, 2008. This follows the departure of the Rev. Craig Tanksley to be Priest-in-Charge of St. Mark's, Ocean Park. Foley-Currie is from the Diocese of Rupert's Land (Manitoba), and recently retired after a career in the federal public service.

The Rev. John Oakes holds some of the "Off the Wall" artwork that the parish was selling April 11 and 12 to benefit their current repair program for their 1911 heritage building. The sale was the idea of parishioner Les McKinnon and his wife Sandy who along with others at Holy Trinity, Vancouver, contributed prints and paintings

Next month, June 22 to 25, the Primate, the Most Rev. Fred Hiltz, will make his first official visit to our Diocese which will include opportunities to meet with clergy and laity. Among other activities, the Primate will preach and ordain, with Bishop Michael Ingham presiding at Eucharist, at an ordination service at Christ Church Cathedral. Also at the Cathedral, April 20 and May 4, Bishop Ingham will confirm several young people at the annual confirmation services.

St. James in Vancouver is preparing to celebrate the birthday of their most senior parishioner, Diana Brown, after Mass on May 11. Her 100th birthday comes the next day. Linda Adams and Allan Duncan of the parish have visited her at Arbutus Manor to prepare an interview story for next month's TOPIC, which will include such memories as being confirmed by Archbishop Adam de Pencier, the diocese's third bishop.

In the Diocese of Taiwan, the Diocese of New Westminister's overseas partner, Bishop David Lai, was in the news recently saying he was saddened by the failure of a referendum that if passed would have directed Taiwan's government to seek membership in the United Nations. The referendum to pass had to be voted on by at least half the voters in Taiwan, but only 36 per cent turned out. The People's Republic of China had welcomed the failure of the referendum since the government insists Taiwan is part of China. Bishop Lai said he would raise the issue at the Lambeth Conference when he talks privately with other bishops. The dean of Taipei's St. John's cathedral, the Very Rev. Samuel Ying-chhiu Lin, shared the bishop's disappointment about the vote in a story distributed by Ecumenical News International.


Craig Newell, 1950-2008

Craig Newell

Craig Newell, husband of the Rev. Gail Newell, rector of Christ Church, Hope, died March 27 in Vancouver, one day short of his 58th birthday. He was a member of the Diocesan Justice and Peace Unit and an Environmental Steward. Recently retired from teaching high school math and coaching track and field, Newell was working on a doctorate in mathematics education and teaching math teachers. He and his wife spent much time in the outdoors, and once climbed Africa's Mt. Kilimanjaro. In addition to his wife Gail, he leaves two adult children and a grandchild. A memorial service was held March 29 at St. Anne's, Steveston, with the Rev. Andrew Pike presiding.