May 2006 Issue No. 7

A Good Shepherd Retires

Gordon and Leslie Worden
with their granddaughter Kayella,
Good Shepherd Sunday, 2006
The Venerable Gordon Worden, prior to his collation as the Archdeacon of Ottawa West, served as the Rector of St Mark’s from 1984 to 1990. On May 7, 2006 – Good Shepherd Sunday – he called a (formal) halt to 35 years of ordained ministry.

Actually, Gordon likened that moment of retirement to a graduation. He has worked hard for many years, accomplished a great deal, and certainly earned the right to embrace the next great challenge ahead: gardening to his heart’s content.

Gordon was born in Ottawa and has served his ordained ministry in the Ottawa Diocese. He graduated with an Arts degree from Queens University, then took his Bachelor of Theology at Huron College in London, Ontario, where he met his future wife, Leslie. He has served in seven parishes throughout the Diocese.

In May of 1971, he and Peter Coffin (now the Bishop of Ottawa) were the first deacons ordained by the Rt. Rev. William Robinson.

Gordon’s first assignment was a curate at St. John’s, Smiths Falls under the Rev. Sid Irwin and the Rev. Lloyd Bradley. He remembers feeling “in want” at the time, so anxious was he to become a great preacher and a great pastor… but he soon learned that he wanted for nothing. His parish was there to help him learn, and God was always present.

In 1973 Gordon relocated to the Parish of Mattawa. He drove 80 miles every Sunday: to Mattawa and Rutherglen in the morning and to Deux Rivieres at 2pm in the afternoon. The Deux Rivieres families were all related, so occasionally the service was cancelled (or, as Gordon preferred to think of it, merely “postponed”) because every parishioner was going to a family outing elsewhere.

The Wordens moved to the Parish of Stafford in 1976. There were three churches, all within five miles of each other, all with very different personalities. Gordon and Leslie learned to leave the back door unlocked, because the farmers treated them like family, and would drop off a fresh roast if they had been slaughtering that day.

In 1979 Gordon learned to time it “to the minute” when travelling between the churches of the Good Shepherd, Cornwall, and St. John’s, Lancaster, on a Sunday morning. One OPP officer who stopped Gordon for speeding showed up in church the next Sunday. 

To this day Gordon associates the lovely fragrance of cedar with St. Mark’s – as beautiful as incense. It was during his ministry here that Leslie had to deal with the terrifying blight of cancer, and the family truly felt like they were walking “through the valley of the shadow of death.” However, the support of the whole parish family and their own bedrock faith brought them through to healing and a new life beyond the fear.

From 1990 to 2000 the Wordens lived in Carleton Place. The strength of St. James’ parish life and the comfort of church suppers really showed, as Gordon officiated at the weddings of two of his daughters under the spectacular sanctuary chandelier. He claims that his favourite volunteer group to work with was the cemetery committee.

In 2000 Gordon had the unique pleasure of overseeing the construction of the Church of the Epiphany in Gloucester – from the ground up. A new building, a central altar, movable pews (in fact, no pews at all)… what a vibrant church to serve. In the meantime, his eldest daughter Becky now has a son (Zachary) and a daughter (Kayella), his second daughter Emily has moved with her husband to British Columbia, and his youngest daughter Jessica has begun her own studies for the priesthood.

Father Gord, we wish you God’s continued blessings in your new future, and we wholeheartedly thank you for all your faithful service.


“Living By the spirit”

Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.”

John 20:21-22 (N.R.S.V.)

Summer is the season when we can open the windows in our homes and let in some fresh air. The Spirit of God is the breath of God, the wind of God. The Spirit of God is life. The Spirit of God is power. The Spirit of God bears testimony within us of all that God has said and done for us in Jesus. How do we open the windows of our hearts and minds to let the Spirit of God in? How do we learn to live by the Spirit?

I do it through the practice of classical Anglican Spirituality. This is the practice of saying the Daily Office (Morning and Evening Prayer) and faithful participation in the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. Nothing animates me more than feeding daily on the Word of God. The Scriptures, which are “God breathed,” put us in touch with the Spirit of God. The Scriptures, which are “God breathed,” lead us to know Emmanuel (God with us), who is Jesus Christ. And to know Jesus is to know the One who sent Him, the One He addressed intimately as Father. To live by the Spirit is to live in communion with the Holy Trinity. The Holy Trinity is Love in relationship. Love can only exist in relationship. Each member of the Holy Trinity testifies to the other and gives completely to the other. Living by the Spirit is living in communion with the only true and living God, the One who gives and sustains all life. The Spirit of God is the Spirit of truth (John 14:15-17). The Spirit brings into our lives the cleansing and healing power of Christ. The Spirit sets us free from sin (separation from God) to live in Holy Communion with all life.

Put into practice a daily rhythm of Bible reading and prayer. Commit yourself to faithful participation in the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. Make this summer a season of the Spirit that continues for all seasons. Here are some words from Thomas Merton in a book I am currently reading, entitled
The Intimate Merton (His Life From His Journals):
“By the reading of Scripture I am so renewed that all nature seems renewed round me and with me. The sky seems to be more pure, a cooler blue, the trees a deeper green, light is sharper on the outlines of the forest and the hills, and the whole world is charged with the glory of God and I feel fire and music in the earth under my feet.”

I will be off-duty for five weeks this summer, from July 3 through August 7. This is for one month of holidays, followed by a reading week. The Rev. Jim Collins will be at St Mark’s on the first Sunday I am away, and all the Wednesdays. The Rev. Lloyd Reaume, a retired priest of our Diocese and parishioner at St Mark’s, will be presiding and preaching the last four Sundays I am away. The Wardens and Claudette in the office will have the names and phone numbers for clergy on emergency call during this time. Thanks to an outside-the-budget source of funding, Claudette will be continuing through the summer in the parish office on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from 9 AM to 1 PM.

 As one striving to live by the Spirit and be your fellow disciple on the road, I am,

- Roger Steinke +

The Music Keeps on Going

Music & the Word
in memory of
Jack and Joannie Zoubie
given by
Pam Zoubie & Susan Ormsbee

Six years ago I was asked to compile a history of St Mark’s music ministry for the 50th anniversary of our parish. In glancing through the pages this year, I realized the 2005-2006 season marked the 50th anniversary of St Mark’s Senior choir. A good time to recognize the dedicated service of some of our members. St Mark’s Choir has been fortunate, with a long history of commitment from its members.

The choir, formed in 1955 by Fred Maskell, has had a number of long-serving members, many serving for decades. Seven members of our present choir have at least 30 years of service each, while 11 members have more than 20 years. In total, our 24 choristers plus our 4 youth members have a combined tally of 460 chorister-years.

One of the founding members in 1955 was Dorothea Ostrander, later to become Dorothea Kirby. Dot was our last founding member, and still an active member with 42 years of service, when she died in 1997.

John Kirby has now become our longest- serving member of the choir. John and Dot had their own choir: 4 daughters, 2 sons, 1 daughter-in-law and 2 granddaughters were all St Mark’s choristers at one time or another, with one son also being a trumpeter. A member of the Bass section, John joined the choir in 1957, singing with both the Senior and the Men & Boys choirs, and acted as Choir President for a while. Apart from a few months’ “sabbatical,” John’s membership is now 49 years and counting. In the 1999 Jubilee Choir memoirs, John is quoted as saying, “Memories are crammed into this church’s music and I hope I can still be part of them for the next 40 years… besides, the choir provided me with two wives.” John is well on his way to the next 40 years, and will be celebrating the BIG 5-0 in 2007. John was recognized for his dedication to the choir when he and Evelyn, choir-wife #2, temporarily “retired” in 2001. The choir is thankful they both came back.

This year the choir recognizes two more choristers, both of whom joined us in the 1967/68 season – Canada’s Centennial year. Both have been stalwarts of the choir since then, not just as choristers but also as leaders and soloists. Both of these choristers have been involved with other choirs at times, but the strongest, continuous thread has been St Mark’s.

Bobbi Cain, although a Soprano soloist by training, was a member of the Altos for most of her time with St Mark’s. Singing has always been a very important part of her life, not just as a chorister but also in supporting other singers and choirs. She was one of the original choristers of the Canadian Centennial Choir, formed in Centennial year, and was President, board member and chorister for many years. She was also very active in other community ventures: President of the National Capital Opera Society; Chair of the Brian Law Opera scholarship; President of the Ontario Choral Federation; Choirs Ontario and Choirs in Contact to name a few. Unfortunately, due to recent health concerns, Bobbi found it necessary to officially retire this year from our choir.

Ray Davidson is a Bass-Baritone, and for many years was part of both the Senior and the Men & Boys choirs, and has many memories of the late 60s and early 70s, when the Men & Boys choir was recognized as one of the best in Ottawa. For many years, Ray, assisted by his wife Patsy, was St Mark’s “official” choir photo- grapher and recording- master, and has a vast library of photos and performances throughout the years by St. Mark’s choirs. The choir is grateful for Ray’s many talents, and thankful for his continued commitment. We also send congratulations to Ray and Patsy on their own 50th wedding anniversary this year.

l-r Ray Davidson, Bobbi Cain, John Kirby,
Canon Roger Steinke and Bishop Peter Coffin

By joining a choir, a chorister becomes part of a new family. On the observance of St Mark’s Day this year, our choir family recog- nized these three choristers, with nearly 130 years of service between them.

We managed to keep it a surprise for them all, even when their own families helped fill the church.

John, Bobbi and Ray: please accept our sincere thanks and appreciation for all your years of service as members of our choir.

 - Margaret Lodge
(the unofficial Choir Historian) on behalf of St Mark’s Choir ♫

St Mark’s Choir

former choristers & directors
parishioners and friends
to a

musical stroll down memory lane

to commemorate

the choir’s 50th anniversary

dessert & cabaret
Saturday, June 17 - 7:30pm

Bishop Reed Hall, St Mark’s Anglican Church

music & memories - history & humour
choral performances & your favourite hymns

goodwill offering

(for further information, contact Margaret at

The Perley Rideau Veterans Hospital

Fr. Roger celebrates Holy Communion in the simple
yet lovely Chapel, March 2006

Every Friday morning, volunteers from St Mark’s Pastoral Care group visit the Perley and assist interested residents in coming to the chapel for the Holy Eucharist.

This ministry has been ongoing for over twenty years, and is a wonderful blessing to so many of the hospital’s shut-in patients.

Thank you to one and all!

(photos by Pat Matthews)

Some of our Friday morning Perley volunteers
Back row: Fr. Roger Steinke, Murray Cobb, Joan Knight, Doreen Craig, Sheila Pitt, Ethel Vaudrey.
Front row: Ted Dale, Helen McGill, Rhodena Burley, Elsie Wilkins, Pat Matthews.
Absent: Carol Dicks, Irene Parboosingh, Jackie Sorfleet

Memorials and Gifts

All sixteen windows have now been installed. All but the St Mark’s window have been dedicated.

in thanksgiving
to the People and Ministry
of St Peter's Ottawa

The latest one – “Discipleship” – was dedicated by Bishop Peter Coffin during the St Mark’s Day Cele- bration on Sunday, April 30, in thanksgiving for the people and ministry of the former St Peter’s parish on Merivale Road (1921- 2003). St Mark’s was originally a Mission church of St Peter’s, and the window design symbolizes the ‘fisher’ theme that was very much part of that Church.

The Stained Glass Windows were only part of the Memorial Com- mittee mandate.

The Committee also co- ordinates other types of gifts, and has produced a leaflet with items that could be donated, for both inside and outside the Church.

The  next  proposed  major  project is  a  memorial garden. All of our memorials can be  viewed on the parish website at :

If you would like more information on gift-giving, the leaflet “Thanksgiving Memorials and Gifts” is available in the Link. Or you can contact one of the Committee members: Cynthia Greer, Coralie Sheehan or Margaret Lodge.

Meditation  …  REACTIONS

When wind-up toys first appeared on the market, we decided to give our young nephew one for Christmas. Three-year-old Eddie’s first reaction when he saw the movement of the toy frog – was to step on it. In his mind, the movement signalled that the frog was alive, and that to him shouldn’t be. He would correct the problem.

We are now at the beginning of the summer months, and once again our lawns are adorned with dandelions.They are either a plague or a beauty to behold. Our reaction and thinking will be determined by our conditioning regarding dandelions.

For small children, dandelions are a flower that they can freely pick. They show their love and admiration for others by picking them a generous bouquet of these bright golden flowers.

For the winemaker, dandelions (so I’m told) make a really delicious wine. For the vegetarian, dande- lion leaves work quite well in salads. In fact, all parts of the dandelion plant are edible and useful.

However, the gardener who wishes his/her lawn to be a mass of green has quite a different reaction to the dandelions that grow in the midst of the lawn. Dandelions are not welcome. Dandelions are, gen- erally speaking, quite prolific. A few this year will mean many more next year. And the more we try to get rid of them, the more they seem to spread.

Dandelions remind me of what Christians are called to be. We, like the dandelions, are called to be useful, and to be prolific in spreading the gospel. When we meet with hard times and are trampled and persecuted, we need to be resilient. To those who are resistant to the gospel of Christ, we may be considered as pests. We are called to be who and what we are. Will we have the perseverance and resiliency needed to be who and what we are and help to further the Kingdom of God here on earth?
- Marion Stalter

Pomp and Circumstance…

Rev Margo Whittaker

Only last year, Margo Whittaker was studying with us as a parish intern. On April 5, 2006 she realised her dream: she was ordained a priest in the Anglican Church.

Heartiest congratulations, Margo, from your whole St Mark’s family!

Did you know?
There are many St. Mark's groups using various rooms in the Church throughout the week, and also many outside groups renting our facilities. To ensure that everyone, whether from St Mark's or an outside group, gets the space they need, all bookings are arranged through St Mark's Hall Rentals Officer, Judy Corbishley. Having everyone go through Judy for bookings avoids misunderstandings about the availability of rooms. Judy provides these arrangements to Parish Secretary Claudette Gravelle, from whom Fr. Roger and anyone else who needs to know can co-ordinate their information. If your group is planning a meeting or an event, give Judy a call as soon as you know the date. Judy can be reached at 521-4699.

A note from the Treasurer
So far, 2006 is shaping up well. Our collections income so far is $4,000 above budgeted levels, and we have also received a generous donation from the ACW and a bequest from Ivy Blakeney. As a result, our expenses for the current year almost balance our income. That is extremely unusual for this time of year. We have also collected almost $2,500 for Lenten Outreach. Although I am cautiously optimistic regarding the outlook this year, I am also aware that last year we remained on budget until the autumn and then began to fall behind at that time. So in summary, thank you for your generosity and keep up the good work!
 - Joy Bowerman
A Tramp On The Street

And Jesus looked down
On Centre 454,
Said this is the place
I been looking for.
A place to come in
And people to meet
And not be ashamed
Of being a tramp on the street.
Life can be weary,
When your home is the street.
And most of the time
You have little to eat.
But with Jesus on your side
You can spiritually grow,
And share with your friends
The Love that you know.
He was Mary’s own darling,
God’s only Son.
Once he was cared for
Once he was young
Mary, she rocked him
Her darling to sleep
But they left him to die
Like a tramp in the street.
If Jesus should come
And knock at your door,
For a place to lay down,
Or some food from your stores,
Do bid him come in
Don’t turn him away,
And God will reward you
On the great Judgment Day.

- Hank Snow
(an active and long-standing member of the Centre 454 community)

Thank You!
There was a good turn-out for the pot luck lunch on Sunday, April 30, when we celebrated St Mark's Day and hosted Bishop Peter. Many thanks to all who contributed food and to all who helped with setting up, decorating, putting out food and drinks, cleaning up, or in other ways. Gratitude to Marian Chapman, Donna Cundell, Rosalie Graham, Cynthia Greer, Ann and David Matthews, Gillian Morris, Michael Perkin, Sheila Pitt, Lorraine Ross, Sheila Vaudrey and Keith Wilkins, and a special thank-you to those who stepped up and helped without being asked – including some of the 8-o’clockers who helped with set-up. Many hands = light work = smooth sailing.

Take care what you say to others,
Be sure that it is true;
For the only Gospel
that some people hear
Is the Gospel
according to you.

The Parish of St. Mark the Evangelist
Anglican Church of Canada

1606 Fisher Ave, Ottawa, ON K2C 1X6
Tel: (613) 224-7431  *  Fax: (613) 224-7454  *  e-mail:

Newsletter editor:  Sheila Vaudrey e-mail:


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