125th Anniversary of Our Diocese

Church of the Redeemer in 1908

Church of the Redeemer in 1908

To help celebrate the 125th Anniversary of the Diocese of Calgary, the Diocesan Council has chosen to support Habitat for Humanity. All parishioners in the diocese are challenged to contribute fund for this amazing charity. The diocese will natch donations up to $100,000, so we can raise a total of $200,000. Gifts of any size will be accepted at the Diocesan Office. Please make cheques payable to the Anglican Diocese of Calgary, with Habitat for Humanity on the memo line. Gifts can be mailed or delivered to

Anglican Diocese of Calgary (Habitat Challenge)

#180, 1209 - 59 Avenue SE

Calgary, AB T2H 2P6

The Challenge ends December 30, 2018.

Those who use online banking can make an e-transfer to the diocese. You can add the Diocese as a new payee, using the email address: lbetts@calgary.anglican.ca. For a security question, use “What is 125 years old?” The answer should be “Diocese” — no quotes, though. You may make a notation that this is for Habitat for Humanity, although the questions should make it plain what this donation is for.

First Organ Recital

The first of our three Saturday organ recitals of the 2018-2019 term was on Saturday, November 10. Neil Cockburn played music in honour of the 350th birthday of the great French keyboard virtuoso François Couperin.

Since the CPO, Theatre Calgary and ATP all begin their evening performances at 7:30 pm, we have moved the start time of the recitals to 5:45 allow those who wish to go to another event some breathing room.

Poppies to be Dedicated As Part of Commemoration


Over 7,000 knitted and crocheted poppies commemorate the One Hundredth Anniversary of the Armistice on November 11, 2018. They will be dedicated by the Dean of Calgary at the 10:30 am choral service on November 11, 2018.

All are most welcome.

The poppies have come from all over Canada, the United States and from places as far away as New Zealand.

 It is the prayer of the members of the Cathedral congregation that all those who look on this installation will call to mind all those who died in service to their country and that they will consecrate their lives to working for peace and justice, not only in this city but throughout the world.

As you pause to look, remember Christ the Redeemer whose supreme sacrifice for the sake of the world is both the pattern and fulfillment of the sacrifice of all those who gave up their lives for the love of peace.

The Cathedral Church of the Redeemer is the Mother Church of the Anglican Diocese of Calgary and the seat of its Bishop.

See the latest CTV coverage here.

Poppies on and in the Cathedral

The poppies have created a notable effect. The importance of the poppy and its connection to all Veterans will be highlighted this year by the Cathedral’s display in honour of the 100th Anniversary of the end of World War I.

The idea came from a church in England. Our People’s Warden Pippa FitzGerald-Finch contacted the church to find out how it could be done. See Global’s new item on the origin of this project.

See the CBC’s coverage here.

More that 80 people knitted or crocheted poppies for this project, including some in Far parts of Canada, and the mother of one of our choristers, who lives in New Zealand.

The purpose it to honour those who died for us in all the wars since 1918.


100th Anniversary of the Great War


We now have well over 7,000 poppies which are being attached to netting.  The display will begin to take shape on the weekend of October 20th and 21st and will remain in place until November 12th.  We hope that as many people as possible will attend the Remembrance Service on November 11th at 10.30am when the Dean will dedicate the installation.'

The poppy project is nearing the end of its preparation phase. Soon the strands of netting will be hung outside and inside the church.

Global TV has provided some insight into the work done by Pippa Fitzgerald-Finch and her team.

The CTV story discusses how this project grew and recognizes Veterans.

New Sign


It looks as if it has always been there, but the stone sign is newly installed by the main Cathedral door. Here are some images of the stone being put in place.


Blessing of the Animals


The Annual Blessing of the Animalstook place on Saturday, 29 September at 11:00 am. This much-loved service was jointly celebrated by the Cathedral Church of the Redeemer, St. Martin’s Anglican Church, and the Calgary Humane Society. It celebrates of our animal companions, present and past. Participants brought their pets for blessing by the Rev’d Natasha Brubaker Garrison of St. Martin’s, and the Rev’d Helen Belcher of the Cathedral, and the Rev’d George Belcher, formerly of St. George’s in the Pines, Banffl.

Doors Open YYC

The Cathedral welcomed 150 visitors for views and tours over the day and a half, 22 and 23 September, 2018. Everyone seemed pleased to see the pleasant surrounding, learning history and about the Anglican church. Views of the 7000 poppies being prepared for display on Remembrance Day were a big hit.

New Members' Sunday


A lunch was served to all parishioners, new and old on Sunday, 16 September 2018. We thank Lisa and Charles Rushton for organizing the lunch, and the members of the coffee group for their help.

To commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the end of the Great War.

Inspired by the project undertaken at St.Mary’s church in Walsham-le-Willows this venture is designed to include every parishioner at the church as well as the Sunday school children as a means of raising the profile of the Cathedral in the downtown core as we remember all those who lost their lives in the Great War.
The aim is to have knitred or crochet poppies that will be displayed on the outside of the Cathedral during the weeks preceding Remembrance Day in 2018.

A huge thank you to everyone for your poppy production.





ESL Café On Summer Recess

ESL Café2.jpeg

The ESL Café is a meeting of newcomers to Calgary who need some help in conversational English. Many of the students are studying in formal classes elsewhere, but come to the Café to have real experience in listening and speaking.

We are taking a summer break. We have been meeting on a Wednesday at 3pm and Saturday at 10:30am.


We recently had a meeting at the home of one of our students who prepared a fabulous meal for all of us (one third of which is pictured here).

Several of our friends have now moved to Toronto because the Ontario government is providing more language training places for people waiting for Permanent Residence status. This fact makes us a bit sad, but we are still in touch with them.

Please pray for our Turkish friends. People are again being arrested there: among our own groups, one woman had died, and a sister has been arrested.

Anyone is welcome to join our volunteer team. Contact Joy Newman: jenewman@telusplanet.net or Anne Paul: sapaul@telus.net.

NeST Update -- our Syrian Family June 2018

It has been a little over a year since the Al Jbawi family arrived in Canada. We are now in “Month 13” – a time of transition as our year-long sponsorship term officially ended in mid-June. Where are we now, and what happens next?
First of all, a huge thank you to everyone who has helped with this endeavour. It was a longer process than we first thought and teams and volunteers underwent transitions of their own, but what an amazing experience it has been and what a wonderful family we are now blessed to know. We hope to invite everyone to celebrate with the Al Jbawis later this summer with a potluck picnic – details t.b.d.
Learning English is crucial to a successful future in Canada. Both parents are on track to finish English Language Learning (ELL) Level 3, an important benchmark for employment, by this summer/fall, with plans to continue their ELL studies either full- or part-time as circumstances allow. The children made great progress at school this year. Ahmad is an exceptional high school student and ranks in the top of his class. This family has worked hard at their studies, with superb support from NeST’s ELL and Homework Team. Arabic interpretation is still required on occasion but the whole family is now able to converse in English and they are eager to hone this skill. At the family’s request their NeST friends will continue to offer homework and conversation ongoing, in a less intensive form. The Household Goods and Financial Mentoring Teams were among the first to work themselves out of a job (mostly). NeST is available to consult as needed but the family does their own shopping and manages their household finances including paying bills online with the computers provided by the Technology Team. The Health Team had a busy year (cautionary tales from other sponsoring groups about dental expenses proved accurate) but Al Jbawis have been connected with resources as needed and are now managing their own health care. The family uses Calgary Transit regularly and with the purchase of a second-hand vehicle in June are completely independent from a Transportation point of view. Socially, they very much enjoyed celebrating their birthdays and other special events with NeST over the past year and hope to continue those connections. They have established friendships in both Arabic- and English-speaking circles.
With respect to NeST finances, thanks to congregational and individual donor support and fundraising initiatives NeST finishes the official sponsorship term with a remaining ‘nest egg’ of about $8000. NeST would like to echo the family’s gratitude for this support and what it has meant to them in establishing their new life in Canada. Khalil started part-time work last fall in addition to full time ELL and has been transitioning to financial independence since then. The family has an ambitious but solid plan to balance breadwinning and education going forward.
NeST Team Leads met June 24 and decided to discontinue the regular monthly support payments to the family as of the end of June (for July 2018) but to keep the NeST account open for the next 6 months (or until funds are exhausted) to use as a transitional contingency fund if needed. This will include offering to help the family with ongoing dental treatments that their health plan is unlikely to cover. With strong agreement from Andre of the Diocesan Refugee Committee, NeST also decided to help the family pay off the remaining balance of the government “travel loan” they have been liable for since their arrival. There was a government policy change during the long processing delay before they were allowed to travel to Canada so although Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada initially said they would cover the airfare for Syrian refugees, by the time the Al Jbawis arrived they were presented with a bill for about $6600. We were not successful in appealing this charge so the family has been making instalments and the loan is about half-paid. Clearing that debt will help establish their Canadian credit rating and help them move forward financially. With this shift in focus to transition, please note that NeST is no longer requesting monetary donations for ministry with this family at this time.
Friendship will continue, however, and so will less formal social and language support. The family is eager to stay in touch. If you would like to be involved, contact a NeST-ian or your parish office.
NeST is now entering a time of discernment. This was a first venture into this kind of work for many of us and we learned so much. The NeST Admin Team would love to hear your thoughts, as
donors/volunteers or from the wider congregation. What worked well and what should we do
differently? Do we have the time, energy and resources to try another sponsorship? If not, what are other ways we can continue to answer Our Lord’s call to “welcome the stranger”? Your input will help us determine what to do with any NeST funds remaining in December (e.g. donate to the Diocesan Refugee Committee, use as seed money for a second NeST sponsorship, other?).
Thanks be to God for bringing this family safely to Canada to build a new life here, and for all those who have helped it happen. Pray for peace and for all those whose lives continue to be disrupted by violence and persecution.
Respectfully submitted,
Jennifer Solem (for NeST)