By Phyllis Thompson
May 10, 2017 was a special day for three individuals who were honoured for having completed the diocese’s four-year Education for Ministry program. A graduation Eucharist and luncheon were held at St. Anne and St. Edmund’s Anglican parish in Parksville.
The event celebrated the dedicated study of Pat Nicoll, a member of St. Mary’s Anglican Church, Nanoose Bay, Beth Mellis, a member of Hope Lutheran Church in Nanaimo, and Jane Fowler, a member of St. Peter, Quamichan in Duncan. The Rev. Selinde Krayenhoff from St. Mary’s and Pastor Terry Richardson from Hope Lutheran were present to share in this meaningful event.
Also present were family and friends of the graduates; the EfM alums who had served as mentors for the new graduates during their years of study; other clergy of the diocese; Boyd Shaw, diocesan coordinator for the EfM program and Lynne Downes, administrator for the Oceanside area group.
Bishop Logan McMenamie was the celebrant of the Eucharist. During that liturgy, he presented the graduates with their certificates. Yvonne Oliver from St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Nanaimo presented the graduates with prayer shawls, congratulatory, meaningful gifts from that parish.
In his sermon, Bishop Logan spoke of the value of the EfM program. He affirmed and honoured the mentors and all the EfM students who have chosen to engage with Scripture through this program, especially because of the challenging theological reflection it encourages. He then spoke about the parable in the Matthew 13 Gospel, noting how expensive seed was in Jesus’s day and how carefully it was sown in order to get a decent yield. Yet here the farmer seems to be spreading it any place, almost carelessly. A worthy point? It’s not so much what happens to the seed, but the farmer’s generosity. Bishop Logan then quoted some lines from “Anyway,” a poem by Mother Teresa. Those lines speak of the positive things one should do “anyway” despite how negatively others act. Both the Gospel and the poem address an abundance of the Spirit, the bishop noted. The new EfM graduates and all of us, can take a lesson from this--be generous with one’s love, almost careless. May it be so.
Photo by: Phyllis Thompson