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Identities: Musical Stories of Canada - Sunday, May 7, 3:30 p.m.

posted 13 Apr 2017, 12:52 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 18 Apr 2017, 04:42 ]

St. Anne's Spring Concert, "Identities," will feature music from various cultures of Canada, including Indigenous, Filipino, French, Celtic, and Afro-American, and will be a collaboration with Singing Out, Toronto's premier LGBTQ choir, and Young Voices Toronto Children's Choir. Accompaniment by a chamber orchestra, and special guests include Naulaq LeDrew, an Indigenous throat singer, to provide meditative music.

Paddling Together: An Exhibition of Art by Indigenous Artists & events on the theme of reconciliation, May 13-28

posted 11 Apr 2017, 13:17 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 24 Apr 2017, 12:35 by Mary Lou Harrison ]

Paddling Together is an exhibition of art by Indigenous artists and events on the theme of reconciliation. 

Paddling Together - Art Exhibition 

Artists: Merlin Homer, Kevin Lamure, Sage Paul, Louise Solomon, and Mike Ormsby. Curated by Mike Ormsby. 
Artworks are exhibited in St. Anne's Church, 270 Gladstone Avenue.

Opening Reception: Saturday, May 13, 12:00 p.m.
Exhibition Hours: Saturdays and Sundays, 12:00 to 6:00 p.m. May 13 & 14, 12:00 to 6:00 p.m.; May 20 & 21, 12:00 to 6:00 p.m.; May 27 & 28, 12:00 to 6:00 p.m. 

Paddling Together - Learning Events

History Lecture: Wednesday, May 10, 7:00 p.m.
The history of the church in Canada, and its effect on Indigenous cultures. Presented by the Rev. Canon David Neelands, Dean of Divinity at Trinity College in the University of Toronto. 

Blanket Exercise: Saturday, May 13, 1:00 p.m.
Kairos Canada and the Canadian Roots Exchange present a learning experience to explore the history of the relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada. To be held on the church front steps (weather permitting). 

Opening Worship Service: Sunday, May 14, 10:30 a.m.
Guest Preacher: The Rev. Chris Harper, Indigenous Native Priest for the Diocese of Toronto. An official opening with smudging precedes the liturgy - all are welcome to participate.

"Reconciliation: The Canoe We Are All In" - Wednesday, May 17, 7:00 p.m. 
Panel Discussion with Susan Blight, moderated by Mike Ormsby. 

Historic Walk: Sunday, May 21, 12:30 to 4:00 p.m.
A walk through the neighbourhood led by Mike Ormsby. The walk will focus on the history of Indigenous peoples in this area from pre-European settlement to the present. 

Panel Discussion on the Art Exhibition: Wednesday, May 24, 7:00 p.m.
Artists Bonnie Devine and Kevin Lamure, moderated by Mike Ormsby. 

Closing Worship Service, Sunday May 28, 10:30 a.m.
Guest Preacher: The Rev. Canon Andrew Wesley. At the conclusion of the liturgy, a closing ceremony of smudging will be performed; all are welcome to participate. Andrew Wesley is an Elder of the Mushkegouk Cree from James’ Bay, and Pastoral counselor for the Council Fire Friendship Centre.

Paddling Together Exhibition Contacts
Mike Ormsby, Curator: 416-436-2669 
Max Streicher, 
          St. Anne's Exhibition Committee: 416-531-7771

Rev. Gary van der Meer, Pastor & Incumbent: 416-536-3160.

Paddling Together is generously supported by the 
Anglican Foundation of Canada

* All events are free. Donations to the St. Anne's Restoration Fund are appreciated.

Same-Sex Marriage at St. Anne's

posted 16 Nov 2016, 12:38 by Gary van der Meer

Dear Friends, 

Effective immediately, St. Anne's now offers marriage to same-sex couples. 

I trust you know about St. Anne's longstanding inclusive welcome. Indeed, since 2013, St. Anne's has been designated to offer same gender blessings. This came about at the request of our community following an extensive discernment and study process. This past summer, the Anglican Church of Canada debated same-sex marriage, and narrowly passed a motion to proceed. 

Archbishop Colin Johnson has authorized a provisional guidelines allowing us to offer same-sex marriage. These guidelines will be in effect until 2019 when the Anglican Church of Canada will finalize its position on same-sex marriage. The Archbishop's Letter and the Pastoral Guidelines explain these details (see the attachments).

We will offer same-sex marriage using a special liturgy created by the Episcopal Church USA. It is a beautiful service of marriage, and it is available to all couples regardless of gender (I have heard people say they prefer it over our traditional marriage liturgy). I hope you will click the link and take time to read it.

I want to stress that we are called to kindness. Not all will welcome this development: some because it goes too far, some because it is not enough. We will meet people who are uncomfortable with same-sex marriage, and our inclusiveness should mean that we show kindness and respect regardless of whether we agree on this matter. Let's call it holy manners.

This is wonderful news for our community at St. Anne's, where we say we are Bringing the Community together for Good. Personally, I am delighted, especially as this has been such a long journey. I keep saying full inclusion of LGBTQ people can be compared to running a marathon, with water stations along the way to keep us running. We are getting there. We are in a new good place, though there is more to be done. 

I hope you join with me in celebrating that St. Anne's now offers same-sex marriage.

With best wishes,

Introducing the Monthly Midweek Eucharist - Wednesday, May 3, 2:00 p.m.

posted 29 Sep 2016, 09:55 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 10 Apr 2017, 10:35 ]

Join us for our monthly midweek worship service. It's 40 minutes: prayers, scripture, a short sermon, communion. Doors open at 10:00 for quiet prayer time. Coffee and cookies afterwards for those who want to linger. A great option if you were busy on the weekend, or to add a time to connect with God in the middle of the week. 

Everyone is welcome, so you can drop in! You do not have to be Anglican to participate in the Eucharist.

Please join us in the church, 270 Gladstone Ave. The church is accessible, with a wheelchair ramp and barrier free washroom.

History of Christianity: Monthly Lecture & Slide Show - Wednesday, May 10, 7:00 p.m.

posted 24 Sep 2015, 10:04 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 13 Apr 2017, 14:51 ]

The Anglican Church of Canada: Origin of Residential Schools and their History; Foundation of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission in Canada. This lecture is part of Paddling Together, the St. Anne's arts festival in celebration of Indigenous life in Canada.

Presented by David Neelands, Dean of Divinity at Trinity College, and the Rev. Gary van der Meer, Pastor of St. Anne's.

Our 9th of 10 sessions continues the theme of the spread of Christianity hand in hand with colonialism. In Canada, Christianity became a vehicle of the state, especially through the residential schools where Indigenous Peoples were required by law to send their children. Kent Monkman's painting, at left, provides a dramatic representation of the removal of children from their families. The legacy of abuse, death, and cultural genocide leaves continuing wounds that are the impetus for Canada's Truth & Reconciliation Commission. This is a difficult part of the Christian story, but the honest telling is essential for us, and for all Canadians.

Note that this lecture will take place in the church at 7:00 p.m. It will not include a potluck supper beforehand - the meai will return for the June 7 lecture!
[Each evening includes the option of a light supper at 6:30 p.m. This is intended to make it easier if you are coming directly from work. We welcome potluck contributions to the meal. Suggestions: salad, cheese & bread, dessert, drinks. The lecture begins at 7:30 - 2 parts with a short break between - given by the Rev. Canon David Neelands, Dean of Divinity at Trinity College, and the Rev. Gary van der Meer, Incumbent of St. Anne's. Each section includes slides to help you learn and think in pictures.]

This is the third year for the St. Anne's lecture series. The first explored the development of the Bible. The second addressed the development of the early church and its theology through to the fourth century. Each evening is complete in itself, so don't hesitate to join us, even if you have not attended previous lectures. Visitors are welcome.

  • 6:30 Supper
  • 7:30 Lecture
  • 8:45 Conclusion


Sept 14 - Lecture 1: Christianity expands to Britain - Romans & Celts. The continuing fascination with Celtic Christianity.

Oct 12 - Lecture 2: Christianity in Britain: Saxons, Danes & Normans.

Nov 9 - Lecture 3: The High Middle Ages - cathedrals, abbeys, shrines, pilgrimages.

Dec 7 - Lecture 4: Renaissance & Reformation in Continental Europe.

Jan 11 - Lecture 5: The Reformation reaches England. Part 1 - Chronology of what happened; Part 2 - changes in worship and theology.

Feb 8 - Lecture 6: Puritanism and the Restoration; Religion and Civil War in England and Scotland.

March 15 - Lecture 7: The Revivals: Evangelicals, Tractarians, and Christian Socialists.

April 5 - Lecture 8: Expansion of Christianity beyond Europe, especially the Americas; the Development of the Anglican Church of Canada, with comparison to Anglicanism around the world.

May 10 - Lecture 9: The Anglican Church of Canada: Origin of Residential Schools and their History; Foundation of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission in Canada.

June 7 - Lecture 10: Many Christian Denominations: Sectarian Christianity in all its Diversity in English-speaking North America.

St. Anne's Garden Day - Saturday April 22, 9:30 - 1:00 p.m.

posted 28 Apr 2015, 10:09 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 20 Apr 2017, 06:26 ]

Get your hands in the soil as we rake and plant to get ready for summer flowers! Stay for lunch (provided): 

Here's the Plan:

9:30 Arrive, get a coffee, and start raking! Bring gloves and a rake if you have them, but we have some if you don't!

12:15 Lunch

"For as the earth brings forth its shoots, 
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise
to spring up before all the nations." Isaiah 61:11
All are welcome. We especially welcome our neighbours to join us. If you or your pet enjoy the churchyard, please come and help us plant and weed!

Saturday, May 30, 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Spring Hike: Mono Cliffs - Saturday, June 17, 9:00 a.m.

posted 7 Apr 2015, 13:38 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 19 Apr 2017, 12:46 ]

Walk the Bruce Trail with us on Saturday, June 10 – with gentle climbs and beautiful views, good exercise and good company. We will share rides (leaving from the church) and walk a circle of trail that starts and concludes in Mono Centre, with dramatic views of the Niagara Escarpment. 

Bring a picnic lunch, a camera, water, and sunscreen. 

Our visit will conclude at the Mono Cliffs Inn with refreshment before we drive back to Toronto. We expect to return to the church by 4:30 p.m.

Note that we will hike rain or shine!
We'll be leaving from the church parking lot at 9:00 a.m. sharp. Meet us at 8:30 so we can organize cars and passengers, share maps, and sign waiver forms.

Sign up by sending us an email, or adding your name to the sign up sheet on the Action Table at the back of the church.

Messy Church - Children's After School Celebration: Wednesday April 19, 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.

posted 7 Feb 2015, 15:15 by Gary van der Meer   [ updated 25 Feb 2017, 07:25 ]

‘Messy Church’ is our way for families to be part of our church community in a relaxed inclusive setting built around fun, creativity, hospitality, and celebration. Each session includes time to run around and play, a story, a craft – and food. As our children say, "It's Church - but we can be messy."

Plan to join us in the Ministry Centre, 276 Gladstone Ave around 5:00. We start with playing. We introduce our theme and a special activity. We will bake bread and make soup together. Let us know if you can join us so we bake enough bread!

You are invited: 
  • Ash Wednesday Holy Discovery Day - Wednesday March 1, 9:00 to 4:00 p.m.
  • March Break Messy Church - Mon Mar 13 - Thur Mar 16, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Please register by contacting us:
Messy Church dates (2017): 
  • February 15
  • March 13-16 Messy March Break
  • April 19
  • May 17
  • June 14
  • 5:00-5:30 arrival
  • 5:30 supper
  • 6:45 concluding prayer

Next Community Dinner - Sunday, April 23, 5:30 p.m.

posted 11 Nov 2012, 11:57 by Domain Administrator   [ updated 20 Mar 2017, 10:43 by Mary Lou Harrison ]

Please join us for our monthly Community Dinner.  Come to eat, or come and help us prepare and serve the meal. We serve over 100 people the kind of Sunday dinner that we would like to have in our own homes. Christianity is about service, and this activity is one of the more pleasant ways to render it to those who need a little help from us. Do consider joining in through your presence, food, or cash donation.


  • 2:30 p.m. Food preparation begins
  • 5:30 p.m. Dinner is served
  • 6:30 p.m. Worship service
  • 6:45 p.m. Clean up (until 7:45)
Everything happens on the lower floor of the Parish Hall. Please enter the hall through the glass doors on the north side of building, on the walkway between the Parish Hall (651 Dufferin Street) and St. Anne's Place (661 Dufferin Street).

  • May 28
  • June 18
  • July 16
  • August 20

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