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Laity receive Order of the Diocese of Toronto

Recipients of the Order of the Diocese of Toronto have their picture taken by friends and family after the service on Jan. 1 at St. James Cathedral. Photos by Michael Hudson
Recipients of the Order of the Diocese of Toronto have their picture taken by friends and family after the service on Jan. 1 at St. James Cathedral. Photo by Simon Chambers

The Order of the Diocese of Toronto, an award created in 2013, honours members of the laity in the Diocese who have given outstanding service over a significant period of time in their volunteer ministry. We give thanks to God for the work and witness of these faithful people who, in the exercise of their baptismal ministry, have demonstrated that “their light shines, their works glorify.” In 2014, the recipients came from the following deaneries: Oshawa, Mississauga, Eglinton, Huronia and Tecumseth. They were presented with their medallion at St. James Cathedral, Toronto, on Jan. 1.

Ted Aldridge, ODT
Christ Church, Oshawa
Mr. Aldridge has served on committees of the diocese for many years. As the long-time chair of the Planning and Development board, he oversaw the building and renovations of many churches. He also served on Area Council for a number of years, adding his wisdom and voice to the needs of Trent-Durham. He is currently serving his parish as churchwarden.

W. Gordon Baker, ODT
St. Thomas a Becket, Erin Mills South
Since joining the parish in 1977, Mr. Baker has served as churchwarden, Sunday school superintendent, lector, chalice bearer, choir member, envelope secretary and greeter. Almost always on a weekly basis, on seeing something to be done, he quietly and unobtrusively does it. As well, Mr. Baker serves the wider community, volunteering at the Mississauga hospital several times a week. His faithful commitment has inspired others to also step forward to help serve.

Norah Bolton, ODT
St. Mary Magdalene, Toronto
Ms. Bolton has had a long association with her parish as chorister, churchwarden, Sunday school teacher and chair of a capital campaign. She is one of the parish’s lay delegates to Synod and a member of the York-Credit Valley Area Council. At the diocesan level, she is a member of the Executive Board and Diocesan Council. She has also served as a volunteer for the diocese’s Congregational Development department. She has been a member of a national task force of the Anglican Church of Canada and has attended four provincial synods.

Order of the Diocese of Toronto medallions, given to each member.
Order of the Diocese of Toronto medallions, given to each member. Photo by Michael Hudson

Helen Bradfield, ODT
Grace Church on-the-Hill, Toronto
Mrs. Bradfield has helped to facilitate virtually every aspect of parish life, from worship to music to special events. She has been the church archivist for almost 15 years and has been instrumental in helping to record and preserve its history. She has also given back to the broader community, serving the Bishop Strachan School, Trinity College and the Diocese of Toronto.

Charles Brown, ODT
St. Hilary, Cooksville
Mr. Brown initiated and oversees the St. Hilary’s Gardens, which have won awards from Communities in Bloom. The gardens serve as a visible outreach to the community and an entrance to one of Mississauga’s main gateways. Mr. Brown initiated and oversaw the development of the Charlie Martin Memorial, which honours one of Canada’s most decorated non-commissioned officers of the Second World War. Mr. Brown is a lay reader, a leader in the men’s fellowship group, and an associate with the Order of the Holy Cross.

E. Patricia Brown, ODT
St. Hilary, Cooksville
Mrs. Brown is president of the parish’s Chancel Guild, president of St. Hilary’s Day Care, a former churchwarden and member of Synod, co-ordinator of the church’s Worship Assistants and co-ordinator of the annual Outreach Walk. She is a companion of the Order of the Holy Cross and a past chair of the diocese’s Doctrine and Worship Committee.

Archbishop Colin Johnson with Donna Cansfield, ODT.
Archbishop Colin Johnson with Donna Cansfield, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Donna Cansfield, ODT
St. George on-the-Hill, Toronto
Throughout her life, Ms. Cansfield has dedicated herself to the public service of others. In 2003, she was elected as MPP for Etobicoke Centre and served in a number of key posts, including Minister of Transportation, Minister of Natural Resources and Minister of Energy, during which time she shepherded in the Energy Conservation Responsibility Act. She has a passion for community service, particularly children, senior citizens and hospice issues. She is a long-time member and current churchwarden at St. George’s.

Margaret Cincurak, ODT
St. Thomas, Brooklin
Mrs. Cincurak was nominated by the parish for her outstanding volunteer activities over the past 50 years. Her contributions are many and varied and include positions of leadership, planning, fundraising, worship and outreach. In all of these, her commitment and involvement have been exemplary.

Ronald Coles, ODT
St. John, East Orangeville
Mr. Coles has given a lifetime of witness to Jesus Christ through his life and in the workplace. He has provided faithful service to the church as an altar server, AYPA member, lay reader, churchwarden, Synod member and pastoral visitor in parishes wherever he and his family have lived, including St. John’s. His ministry includes being a friend and confidant of many clergy, especially in the early days of their arrival.

Janet Coombs, ODT
Parish of Coldwater-Medonte
Mrs. Coombs was nominated by the congregation of St. John, Matchedash, for her long, faithful service and for providing key leadership as churchwarden, Sunday school teacher and board member over the past 34 years. Through difficult days in the life of St. John’s, she has been a beacon of hope and perseverance.”

Philip Creighton, FCA ODT
Christ Church, Deer Park
Trained as an accountant, Mr. Creighton worked in some of the largest accounting firms in the country and decided early on to specialize in the not-for-profit sector. That group, which includes churches, educational and social service agencies, have accounting needs that are much different from large corporations. In recognition of his expertise and service, he was named a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, its highest award. For many years as a member of the Audit Committee, he has ensured that the financial records of the diocese meet the highest accounting standards.

Archbishop Johnson with Arthur Downes, ODT.
Archbishop Johnson with Arthur Downes, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Arthur Downes, ODT
St. Michael and All Angels, Toronto
Mr. Downes is a retired Justice of the Peace with extensive community involvement. He has been a lay member of Synod, an Ontario Hospital Association director, a Humber College lecturer, Senegal’s honorary Consul General for 16 years until 2009, and the founding chair of the board of directors of Doctors Hospital Foundation, now Kensington Foundation. Mr. Downes was among the first community members to develop and implement liaison committees between the black community and the Toronto Police Service.

Patrick Dugan, ODT
Church of the Transfiguration, Toronto
Mr. Dugan has been an integral part of the church since 1974, when he brought his joy, dedication, talents and love of God to the congregation. In addition to being a vibrant leader within the congregation, he has donated countless hours of labour over four decades to the maintenance and upkeep of the church, as a contractor and master carpenter.

Launi Elliott, ODT
Christ Memorial Church, Oshawa
Mrs. Elliott was nominated by the parish not just in recognition of her many years of faithful service, but also in gratitude for the witness of her life – her faith, her character, her prayers and her conduct. Her example encourages the congregation be more faithful in its own walk with Jesus Christ.

Thomas Fitches, ODT
St. Clement, Eglinton
Mr. Fitches has been the organist and director of music at St. Clement’s since 1973. He trained in Oshawa, Toronto, and Croydon, England, at the Royal School of Church Music. He has performed on the CBC, at Roy Thomson Hall and is the accompanist for the Elora Festival Singers, with whom he has made a number of recordings. He is a past president of the Toronto Centre of the Royal Canadian College of Organists and was awarded the college’s Distinguished Service Award in 2008. He brings warmth, humility and friendliness to the parish. In 2008, St. Clement’s parish bell was named in his honour: Faithful Thomas.

Diana Heath, ODT
Church of the Messiah, Toronto
Dr. Heath has provided her parish with exemplary leadership in many areas, including pastoral care and healing ministries, worship, music and education. Since joining the church in 1975, she has epitomized servant leadership with unflagging energy.

Michael Hudson, ODT
St. James Cathedral, Toronto
Mr. Hudson photographs people and events in the life of the diocese and his pictures have appeared in many publications, including The Anglican. From royalty to little children, archbishops to street people, Mr. Hudson captures the collective ministry of Anglicans in the diocese and shows it back to them. He sees the world through the eyes of the camera in remarkably perceptive ways. An award-winning photographer, Mr. Hudson has experienced the life of the diocese in ways that very few others have.

Kenneth Hudson, ODT
St. John, Blackstock
Mr. Hudson has provided outstanding leadership and tireless efforts in support of the church and the community. He has earned the respect and gratitude of the congregation, the community and his peers.

Lori Johnson, ODT
St. Francis of Assisi, Meadowvale West
Ms. Johnson’s leadership skills, giving spirit, pleasant demeanor, willingness to go the extra mile and openness to the inclusion of all who enter the church’s doors have endeared her to every member of St. Francis. She loves to sing her heart out in praise to God as a member of the choir and as a soloist on special occasions.

Charles Jordan, ODT
St. Andrew, Alliston
Mr. Jordan is a faithful servant of the Lord and an inspiration to parishioners through his substantial and dedicated ministry, both at the Retreat House and the church. He is a man of deep faith and a generous donor of his gifts and talents. He is a staunch supporter and encourager of others, and is often sought for his wise advice and counsel by clergy and laypeople alike. As a master craftsman, his contributions have enhanced the church’s physical plant. As the Retreat House Café cook, coordinator and confidante, he has touched many lives.

Archbishop Johnson with Ellen and Dr. Samuel Lam.
Archbishop Johnson with Ellen Lam, ODT and Dr. Samuel Lam, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Ellen and Samuel Lam, ODT
St. John, Willowdale
Dr. Samuel and Ellen Lam were nominated for their philanthropy and visionary leadership in Canada, Hong Kong and Ireland. Dr. Lam is the president and chairman emeritus and Ellen is a member of the board of governors of the Mon Sheong Foundation, dedicated to the promotion of Chinese culture, heritage, language and philosophy through caring for the elderly, encouraging the young and providing programs and services in response to the needs of communities. They were founding members of St. John’s Chinese church and have provided key support to the diocese’s outreach ministries to Mandarin-speaking people. Dr. Lam was a member of the executive committee of the Bishop’s Company and Mrs. Lam was a member of Diocesan Council.

Nancy LeGresley, ODT
St. Martin, Courtice
Mrs. LeGresley has provided faithful service as an organist, choir director, baker and inspirational friend. Along with her husband, she was one of the first parishioners of St. Martin, Courtice, when it was an outreach of St. John, Bowmanville.

William Lowe, ODT
St. Peter, Erindale
Mr. Lowe was nominated for his humble and devoted service over his lifetime. His devotion to the church, grounded in his love of Jesus Christ, has shone forth over decades of leadership as head of the servers’ guild, as sacristan, pastoral visitor and lay reader.

Esther Lucas, ODT
St. Martin, Bay Ridges, Pickering
Mrs. Lucas was nominated for her tireless work in following Jesus’ commandments to love God and love her neighbour. She has helped the homeless, the hungry, the poor, the sick, and those in need. At the age of 90, she continues to follow those commandments. She shines the light of Christ to everyone she meets.

Hazel McCallion, ODT
Trinity, Streetsville
Ms. McCallion was nominated for her exemplary service to the community and the church. She was first elected as deputy reeve of Streetsville in 1967 and later as its last mayor. When it was amalgamated, she served on council and then as mayor of Mississauga, a position she held for the next 36 years, until her retirement in 2014. Many years ago, she served as the national president of the Anglican Young People’s Association. She credits her faith with giving her energy.

Robert McClellan, ODT
St. Leonard, Toronto
During a long and distinguished career in the insurance industry, Mr. McClellan has held many volunteer positions, making a mark both in the industry and society. He is treasurer of the Toronto Construction Association and served on the board of directors of CCA, TCA and the National Association of Surety Bond Producers. He has also assumed volunteer roles in a number of community groups, including the Junior Chamber of Commerce, the Boy Scouts of Canada, the King Bay Chaplaincy and his parish. He is one of the leaders of FLAME, inspiring and strengthening men’s expression of faith in Jesus Christ.

Gladys McClellan, ODT
St. Leonard, Toronto
Mrs. McClellan has served the Anglican Church of Canada at the international, national, diocesan and parish level. She has provided diligent service for more than 60 years.

Harold McGary, ODT
All Saints, Whitby
Mr. McGary epitomizes the Christian view of a good and faithful servant. He taught Sunday school in the 1960s and served as a reader, a sidesperson and a churchwarden. He is an accomplished woodworker and the church boasts many examples of his talent and expertise. For more than half a century, he has worked quietly and without fanfare to help the church in any way he could.

Marilyn Metcalfe, ODT
St. George, Pickering Village, Ajax
Mrs. Metcalfe was nominated for her outstanding service in growing parishioners’ faith and deepening the parish’s understanding of prayer, Christian meditation and spirituality. She has been a respected leader within the community for decades. Her voice and insight reaches to every aspect of parish life.

Clifford Moon, ODT
Church of the Ascension, Port Perry
Mr. Moon was nominated for passionately communicating the importance of an Anglican church in Port Perry and has been instrumental in keeping its doors open to everyone. He has not only ensured that the integrity of the buildings has been addressed but he has been a great ambassador of Anglicanism in the community.

Susan Tremayne-Moon, ODT
Church of the Ascension, Port Perry
Ms. Tremayne-Moon was nominated for her devotion to the parish in many different roles, especially her untiring efforts in helping to rebuild the church in the last three years and making it a viable parish. Her lifelong Anglican values continue to be expressed by her in building up the parish.

Archbishop Johnson with Israel Newell, ODT.
Archbishop Johnson with Israel Newell, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Israel Newell, ODT
Trinity East, Toronto
A systems analyst with the Toronto District School Board, Mr. Newell’s contribution to the church is not through computers or technologies but in dealing with people, often people who have been deeply marginalized. A man of deep evangelical faith, he has been involved for years in the diocese’s Community Ministries board, which is now the Social Justice and Advocacy Committee, following Christ’s call to minister to all of his people. He was a lay member of Synod for eight years.

Billy Ng, ODT
St. Elizabeth, Mississauga
Mr. Ng lives out his faith through his willingness to serve and the way in which he continuously shares his passion for Anglicanism. Since he joined the parish in 1996, Billy has served in numerous positions, both in ministry and administration. He has been a churchwarden, lay reader and mission chair. Mr. Ng’s pragmatic approach and ability to facilitate compromise gives the St. Elizabeth family a much needed, down-to-earth perspective. This has been invaluable during the church’s first, and now second, phase of its extension project, as well as the day-to-day running of the church. His example is one to which all St. Elizabeth parishioners aspire.

Ann Orser, ODT
Parish of Washago-Price’s Corners
Mrs. Orser was nominated by the congregation of St. Luke, Price’s Corners for her lifelong faithful service as a member of St. Luke’s and as a key leader of the ACW. She is a wonderful example of quiet and steadfast Christian ministry in her home, her neighbourhood and her church. Through many challenging years where the survival of her home church was in doubt, her resolute and positive spirit helped St. Luke’s to move into a more stable future.

Peter Paterson, ODT
Holy Trinity, Thornhill
Mr. Paterson is a philanthropist who believes that one should give of both one’s time and money. His liturgical ministry among the gathered community comes alive in practical service to the church’s garden and his intense passion for the marginalized in the local community and city. If Holy Trinity were ever to develop a parish encyclopedia, Mr. Paterson’s picture would be next to the section entitled “The Baptismal Covenant”.

Archbishop Johnson with Sarah Peake, ODT.
Archbishop Johnson with Sarah Peake, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Sarah Peake, ODT
St. Bride, Clarkson
Ms. Peake has been a member of choirs, Bible study groups, youth groups, events and activities in the Anglican Church her entire life. She has served as a member of the diocese’s Ministry Reallocation Committee and as a member of the board of directors of the Meadowvale West Church Centre. She is currently the Associate Registrar at Humber in Toronto.

Geoff Pring, ODT
St. Paul on-the-Hill, Pickering
Mr. Pring is a faithful, loving, and long-time member of St. Paul’s church family. He has served as a lay reader for over 35 years. He sings in one of the church’s worship teams, trains the servers, leads worship, and exemplifies in word and deed the life of a humble follower of Jesus. He and his wife Joy are a great blessing to the church community.

Barbara Reckord, ODT
Church of the Incarnation, Toronto
Ms. Reckord was nominated for her advocacy for the ministry of healing in the diocese. Her deep faith and commitment have been demonstrated in her work to establish a healing centre and in the training of clergy and laity in the exercise of Christian healing. This work has led to the majority of the parishes in the diocese actively engaged in this ministry. She is an associate of the Sisterhood of St. John the Divine and a spiritual director.

Edna Evelyn Reid, ODT
Parish of Coldwater-Medonate
Mrs. Reid was nominated by the congregation of St. George, Fairvalley for her 66 years of faithful service as a member of the ACW, as well as her inspiring life of professional and volunteer service to those in her community. Her particular gift to the church has been her ministry of invitation, hospitality and pastoral care. She reaches out in Christian love to all she meets and is held in deep affection and high regard by both her church community and the Oro-Medonte area, where she has lived and worked for almost all of her 96 years. She epitomizes the Gospel call to see and serve Christ in each person.

Donald Sabean, ODT
St. Matthew, Oshawa
Mr. Sabean was nominated for his faithful service over the past 50 years as a lay reader and also as an on-call chaplain at Lakeridge Health-Oshawa. He lives out his Christian faith in all he does – at work, in his family life, in his friendships and at the church.

William Saunderson, FCA ODT
St. Clement, Eglinton
Mr. Saunderson began his career as a chartered accountant with Clarkson Good (now Ernst & Young). In 1971, he founded Sceptre Investment Counsel Ltd. He was elected MPP in 1995 and served as Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Tourism. He has extensive experience as a board director. He is the chair of RDI, the Canadian Osteopathic Education Trust Fund, the Diocese of Toronto Investment Committee, and the Trinity College “Strength to Strength” Endowment Campaign. He is also a board director for the Royal Ontario Museum Foundation and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and a member of the University of Ottawa Pension Investment Committee and the Shaw Festival Governor’s Council. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and a recipient of their Award of Outstanding Merit.

T. Leonard Skidmore, ODT
St. Paul, Uxbridge
Mr. Skidmore was nominated for his outstanding work, dedication, strong sense of community and faith. For close to four decades, he has devoted countless hours to the parish, particularly the bricks and mortar of the church. St. Paul’s truly appreciates all the time, energy and willingness to pitch in wherever needed to take care of the church.

Grace Stephens, ODT
St. Luke, East York
Ms. Stephens has been a long-time, dedicated volunteer in her parish, where she has had numerous leadership roles. She has been a lay member of Synod for more than a decade and has been involved in Social Justice and Advocacy work, particularly as a member of the diocese’s Housing Committee. Additionally, she has served tirelessly on the Agenda Committee for both diocesan Synod and General Synod.

Alma Stoneman, ODT
St. Clement, Eglinton
Ms. Stoneman was nominated for her uncanny ability to empathize with those who reach out to her for help; her listening skills are treasured by many people within and outside the church. She can comfort with a touch of her hand or a gentle word and give hope and encouragement to those who need it most. Her generosity of spirit comes from her faith in Christ, and she has been an encouragement and example to many.

Vern Taylor, ODT
Parish of Washago-Price’s Corners
Mr. Taylor was nominated by the congregation of St. Paul, Washago for his years of leadership as a churchwarden and for sharing his practical skills to maintain the property. He is an inspiring and sunny presence in the community. When the congregation thinks of Mr. Taylor, these words from scripture come to mind: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).

Archbishop Johnson with Danny Thomas, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson
Archbishop Johnson with Danny Thomas, ODT. Photo by Michael Hudson

Danny Thomas, ODT
Church of South India, Toronto
The Church of South India has recently entered into a formal relationship with the Diocese of Toronto due in no small measure to the tireless efforts over an eight-year period of Danny Thomas. Mr. Thomas is a key leader and current churchwarden and choir master at CSI Toronto. Using his considerable negotiation skills, he was able to find a balance between South Indian traditions and the Diocese of Toronto’s requirements that has created both mutual respect and trust. Mr. Thomas helps the young people of CSI deepen their awareness of their traditional spirituality, language and culture. He serves on the York-Credit Valley Area Council as well as the diocese’s Intercultural Committee and is a passionate voice for the proclamation of the Good News of Jesus Christ.

David Toycen, ODT
Trinity, Streetsville
For 18 years, Mr. Toycen served as the president and chief executive officer of World Vision Canada, the largest humanitarian relief and development agency in the country. He has had a significant influence on public policy in this area and has spoken at the World Bank, the United Nations and with heads of state, always focusing attention on the well-being of the world’s children. He has travelled the world, seeing first-hand the challenges children face in some devastating situations of poverty. He is the author of The Power of Generosity and holds three honorary doctorate degrees.

Judith Ann Tutty, ODT
Trinity Church, Port Credit
Ms. Tutty was nominated for her constant selfless giving to the church and the neighbourhood with humility and grace. While she provides strength, leadership, wisdom and refined skill to every area of parish life, she deflects praise and passes it on to the people with whom she works and with whom she builds teams. She has a deep personal faith in Christ, which is evident in her life choices, words and actions. She lives out the Gospel mandate by serving others joyfully and lovingly, always prepared to forgive and to laugh.

Donald Walker, ODT
Parish of Coldwater-Medonte
Mr. Walker was nominated for his long and faithful service to the church, holding many key positions, including being a churchwarden, for over 30 years. He is an example of quiet, competent and steadfast leadership, and of a spirit of friendly cooperation. His ministry reminds the congregation of the Christian teaching of Paul: “Render service with enthusiasm as to the Lord, not to men and women” (Ephesians 6:7).

Lilian Wells, ODT
St. Cuthbert, Leaside
Dr. Wells has made a significant contribution to the life of the parish. Her service as churchwarden and envelope secretary show the trust the parish has placed in her. Her current major parish responsibilities as a lay reader and as president of the ACW’s executive show her continued dedication to the parish.

Gloria Wiebe, ODT
St. James Cathedral
Ms. Wiebe was nominated for her service as a parish nurse; she developed the parish nursing program at St. James Cathedral. This provides health care monitoring not only to the regular parishioners of the cathedral but also to the hundreds of guests at the weekly drop-in, many of whom are under-housed, under-fed and under-served. She has been an advocate for parish nursing and has helped produce the standards and policies for the diocese for this ministry.