Congregational Designated Minister (CDM)
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Faith,
What a blessing it has been to me to join the ministry team at Bells Corners United Church! It may surprise some of you to know that this isn't my first experience with BCUC. This was my home church when I first moved to the Ottawa area in 1973 after graduating from McMaster University, and I attended here until 1982 when our family moved to Ashton. I have been actively involved at Ashton United Church since then.
In the late 1980's, I went back to university and earned a Bachelor of Education Degree. This was a time of many changes and challenges for me and my family as I became a single parent of two and embarked on a new career. I will always be thankful that my church family was there to support me. In the mid 1990's I remarried and gained a stepdaughter. It was through Ashton United Church that we heard about the Chernobyl Children in Belarus and decided as a family that we wanted to help. This was a life-altering experience for all of us. From this experience came the blessing of another child who we adopted in 2000, when he was 12 years old.
Throughout my life, family has been the most important aspect of who I am. I am a proud wife, mother of four wonderful adults and grandmother to three precious little ones. I can only imagine how difficult life would be without the many relationships that support us in our journey and offer us opportunities to support others. This feeling of family has manifested itself as well in my relationships within my church community. How rich this faith journey is when you have a family along to share the ups and downs, the sorrows and celebrations, the moments of doubt and of revelation.
I come to you as a retired educator. I worked in the education system as a teacher, an instructional coach (providing coaching and support for teachers), and a Student Achievement Officer with the Ontario Ministry of Education (working with several school boards in Eastern Ontario to help improve the outcomes for all students). You might say that teaching is in my blood, but it wasn't my first career. I originally studied to be a Social Worker and later spent some time in high tech.
I have always been involved, on a voluntary basis, in my church community and, since retirement, have embarked on the Licensed Lay Worship Leader Course. In some ways, I have been looking for "the right fit". I strongly believe that I have found that fit in the CDM position here at BCUC. The job description seems to embody almost everything I have done in the past and provide tremendous growth opportunities for the future. I am excited by the prospect of working with this congregation as we continue the journey of being the United Church presence in this community of Bells Corners. I thank you all for the very warm welcome I have received on my return "home" to BCUC.
Wishing you God’s shalom,
Congregational Designated Minister