Wow what a great week we’ve just had!

Getting into the Parish Centre with all of you to look around at the Special vestry was fantastic. I don’t know about you, but I could feel the energy in the air, and it was wonderful and uplifting to hear people talking so enthusiastically about how the space could potentially be used.

On Sunday after Mass, I really enjoyed the newcomers lunch and Joyce’s lasagne! Thank you Joyce, and thank you to all who attended and who helped prepare and pack away.

Two meals, one weekend, and I learned that there is continued energy for the gospel and for ministry at St. James’. Our community is growing and we continue to welcome and invite people to join us.

This week we held Open Church for the first time on Monday and it went well. We are currently offering hot drinks for those who visit us during the cold winter days. The stories they share are all different and provide insight into what it is like to live and work in the down town Eastside.  Gradually we hear how we can continue to be part of the community and consider where the Spirit might be leading us? In light of the gospel what will our continued response be in the here and now?

I am sure there will be differences of opinion as to how the Parish Centre should be used and what we should do next in our ministries here. I am encouraged by the willingness I heard on the weekend to “live into the space.” I think the next few years at St. James’ will be exciting and hold a few surprises for us. We may have to take risks we didn’t expect, we may have to change in ways that don’t come easy to us, but I know we are up to the challenge and that with God all things are possible.

See you all soon, for whatever comes next.

Peace,

Mother Lucy

A week ago last Thursday a group of us went to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank to sort food and learn about the ways the Food Bank serves the people of Vancouver. We learned that 27,000 people rely on food from them each week and the warehouse where the food is received and sorted was massive.

It was an initiative that came out of the Thursday night study group, and others I invited along the way, who I thought might be interested in coming along. It was a one-off booked slot, but it could be something that groups from St. James’ do more regularly. The group that went enjoyed the work immensely and we had a hot drink together afterwards before heading home.

One of the things I learned was that although the warehouse is well stocked now, the summer months can be very tough as people are not donating in the same volume as they do during the winter months.

Based on the enthusiasm of the group who went, feedback received online and from the staff at the Food Bank, I believe this creates an opportunity for us at St. James’ to contribute to those in need in our neighbourhood and beyond, by holding a food drive during June and July. You will be able to choose to fill a box, or donate to a box here in the church with individual items.

So, we’re going to go for it! I will be getting supplies and boxes from the Food Bank for us to fill and Tara and I are committed to filling a box each to get us started! Look out for more news on that as time goes on!

In the mean time I look forward to having lunch with you all at the Parish Council this Saturday and again with attendees and newcomers on Sunday after High Mass.

See you very soon,

Mother Lucy