Monthly Archives: March 2021


A year ago today the World Health Organization officially classified the spread of the Covid-19 virus as a pandemic.  In a few months it had gone global.  On the evening of that same day a number of our key leaders met in the Friendship Room to discuss how this would  effect our church.  We sat at close quarters around a table with no thought of masking up as we sought to act but not overreact to the growing concern.  However, things were escalating quickly and the next day we made a decision to do something I had never seen the likes of in my life.  We decided to webcast our worship on Sundays for at least a few weeks from behind closed doors.  Within days the government was telling all places of worship to do the same and the weeks soon became months. 

The pandemic has come to define our life together over the last year and has probably in many ways changed the way we will live in the long term.  Though we have not met together face to face we have discovered how strong the bonds of love and compassion are as you have so faithfully reached out to one another and dug deeply to support your church.   Thank you. 

Today I think back not just to a year ago but to a dozen or more years ago when the late Len Cullen was so convinced that Yorkminster Park’s worship was broadcast worthy that he underwrote a study into the possibility.  Thanks to another very generous gift from Bill Waters and the time and talent of Dave King and the late Al Brown we were soon webcasting.  Yet who among us would have anticipated an entire year of only being able to attend church via the webcast?  It was truly a gift of God and has become something of a calling on Dave’s life.  Neither Dave nor Jim Weir have missed a Sunday since the pandemic began!  Dave has also enabled us to be creative with our webcasting presenting a variety of additional programming.  As we look back on a year we are all appreciative of Dave and Jim and of those early pioneers who encouraged us to explore.

We are also grateful to our Chair of Communications, Janice Ivory Smith, who has been instrumental in helping us get the word out on multiple platforms.  When I first started here the Communications Committee agenda was primarily the weekly advertisement of the Sunday service in the Toronto Star and the publication of the church newsletter.  Now with social media and the internet as well as traditional sources the work of the committee chair is endless.  Thank you Janice.  I also want to pay tribute to our Admin Assistant, Cody Barevich.  I had never thought of Cody as a jock, but he quarterbacked our office from the church and home and has coached us through endless zoom meetings.  He has been a godsend. 

There are so many others we could thank including our Parish Nurse, Lily.  The list could go on and on, but above all we thank God.  In that spirit I offer the following prayer.


Gracious God with humble hearts we come to you confessing that Covid-19 has tested our spirits and we are weary.  Thank you that all along the way we have not been alone.  You have been with us in Christ who took upon himself our flesh and walked through the fearful shadows of our mortality that we might reach out and know that come what may the Good Shepherd will lead, guide and protect us.  We thank you for all front line health workers and all who faced risk to serve the public good.  We thank you for the scientists who have worked tirelessly to find treatments and cures.  Continue to bless and guide them.  Thank you too that within your Creation are the remedies to all that ails us and by your redemptive hand not even death can separate us from your love.  Watch over and protect us all and bring an end to this pandemic we pray, in the name of Jesus Christ in whom we have the true peace which passes all understanding, Amen.