On Wednesday, March 15 at 1pm a Requiem Mass was held for the late, the Reverend John Carter Blyth, MBH (November 19, 1935 – February 27, 2023). Here is the link to Br. John's obituary on the diocesan website which chronicles his extraordinary life in ordained ministry including his adoption into the Nisga'a' First Nation and his membership in the Melanesian Brotherhood.
The Celebrant for the Eucharist was the Right Reverend John Hannen, 8th Bishop of the Diocese of Caledonia. Br. John Blyth celebrated Mass at Bishop Hannen's and Alana Hannen's wedding more than 40 years ago. Alana Hannen was one of the readers, sharing the Epistle, 1 John 4: 7-18a
Present at the liturgy were Melanesian Brothers, Brother Nelson Bako and Father Richard Nokia (Chaplain). They administered the chalice during Holy Communion. The brothers visited for 10 days and during their stay they were hosted by several clergy and parishes around the Diocese of New Westminster including a trip to the Sunshine Coast. They have transported Br. John's ashes to the Solomon Islands, arriving on March 23. Also participating were the parish’s rector, the Venerable Fr. Kevin Hunt as MC and liturgical assistant; the Reverend Matthew Johnson, Street Priest for the Street Outreach Initiative and Priest Associate at St. James’ administered Holy Communion, Deacon of the Word and Bishop’s Chaplain was the Reverend Joyce Locht of St. James’; crucifer and thurifer, Claude St. Denis, reader and psalmist, Lynn Wilson, who shared Job 19: 23-27 and led Psalm 121. The preacher was Br. Blyth’s long-time friend and colleague, the Reverend Clarence Li. Fr. Li's sermon is linked here in video, audio and text. Music in worship was led by an SATB quartet. There were a dozen vested clergy present including the Reverends Paula Sampson and Ian MacKenzie from Powell River. The Intercessor was the Reverend Fr. Neil Gray who led the Prayers of the People.
Bishop John Stephens officiated at the Commendation which was followed by the Nisga'a Farewell from Herb Morven, the Chief from the house and family that Br. Blythe was adopted into. Earl Monroe and Sherry Small took the blanket from the coffin. Andrea Burwell, the President of the Tsamiks office for the local Nisga’as in greater Vancouver area was present and the pallbearers were Sherry Small, Charles Morven, Linda Adams, ODNW, Jerry Adams and Br. Blythe’s nephew Johnathan.
Images included in this post in the top scroll include: Fr. Clarence preaching, the Liturgy of the Eucharist presided by Bishop Hannen, the Commendation officiated by Bishop Stephens, the Nisga'a' Farewell led by Herb Moven.
Please find below a video of the Commendation/Nisga'a' Farewell and Procession Out