January 2021

Rejuvenation and Revisioning


Chair, Mark Paetkau

  • Mark opened the meeting and introduced guest speaker Marc Coulombe, Regional Minister of the Pacific Mountain Region, who led a discussion on the revisioning process for Pacific Spirit United Church. 
  • Marc suggested we begin the revisioning process by choosing a core group of 5-8 people of different demographics to lead the process and that the nets be cast widely for both conceptualizers and finishers. 

  • Mark Paetkau and Maggie Enwright will be accepting names for possible members of this group.


Rev. Maggie Enwright

Rev. Deborah Laing is exploring what opportunities may exist for our church to be involved in vaccine rollout.

  • Spiritual Health of the Congregation

Thank you to Doug Smart and his coffee-time-by-invitation hosts for making new and renewed connections possible over Zoom. The Pastoral Care and In Reach groups continue to search out ways to connect particularly with congregants who do not have access to meeting technology.

  • Worship:

Many people enjoyed live engagement with the December 27 and Jan 3 services. Others wished those services had been recorded.

A Maundy Thursday service/activity may be offered via Zoom. We will share a pre-recorded service with Shaughnessy Heights on Good Friday.

  • Summer Spirit:

Reps from Pacific Spirit, Shaughnessy, Knox, Marpole and St. Stephens met to discuss summer plans with the understanding services will still be virtual during the summer. The suggested theme is The Gospel According to… with different contemporary lenses on the gospel (according to the Beatles, according to Broadway, according to Quiltmakers/Gardeners/Bakers?) A financial contribution from each congregation may be sought to cover the expense of inviting guest speakers.

  • Rejuvenation

Water ingress on the east wall is outside the purview of the Rejuvenation and even the Property Oversight Committee. A task force will take over the issue. (See also report from the committee)

  • Revisioning

Congregants would like to include consideration of our purpose and mission as well as what that might mean for our property redevelopment.


Chair, Heather Swallow

  • We noted that the advent calendar drew five times the usual number daily visitors to the church website.
  • Alison Marshall and Heather are each working to find a woodworker to assist with the Pew Project (joining two legacy pews into one pew). The project may have to wait until after we return to church.
  • Online Coffee House will take place on February 20, between 7 and 8 pm. The theme is PANDEMIC PROJECTS. Advertising is underway for performances, displays, and audience.


Chair, Irene Griffiths

  • Advent

Thanks to the children who participated over the Advent season, decorating envelopes, participating in the pageant, and further thanks to Cathy Cryder’s leadership in developing the pageant, Heather Brunt and Kathryn Urquhart for expert shepherd wrangling at Jericho Beach during filming, and to Heather Swallow for her inspired editing.

  • Youth Groups 

Senior youth group continues over Zoom on Wednesdays.  Junior youth group has moved to Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:00.

  • Faith at Home

Next kits will be delivered to families during Lent.


Chair, Julie Poznanski

  • The financial results for 2020 were quite remarkable. Notwithstanding the challenges of the pandemic, our community thrived with big thanks to those who remained engaged and committed to our financial and spiritual wellbeing.
  • The Rejuvenation project, “Bloom where we are planted” is well underway and estimated for completion early in 2021. The final budget to be approved by Council will be funded, with gratitude, primarily from the Chris McGregor Fund.
  • While the 2021 budget takes a big step towards a balanced budget, we will still incur a small deficit with continued limits on property recoveries and fundraising capability. It is imperative that we move away from a structural deficit and adopt a balanced budget approach by 2022.


Chair, Sally Ball

  • Committee members will contact some of the congregation to make mini videos or photos to share in the newsletter. It is hoped that many groups within the congregation will be made visible by this project during this time of social separation.
  • Details from the Roll Report for January have been entered into the minutes.


Chair, Jacqueline Kelly

  • Staff reviews are almost complete and staff liaisons have been assigned.


Chair, Patricia Alexis

  • The Zoom shower for Baby Lia was held on January 21st. It was a warm and joyful meeting. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this amazing event.


Council Rep: Erin Peters

  • We are grateful for the assistance of Nancy Holme of Echo West Development for her respectful, thorough, pragmatic and incredibly efficient oversight of the project.


Chair, Chris Epting

  • Subgroups of Spiritual Nurture continue to meet via Zoom on a regular basis. These are: Pastoral Care (hosting a dementia workshop on January 31, 2021 after the service); Centering Prayer; Contemplative Meditation Group; Healing Pathway; The Third Place, Questioning Faith, Isaiah Bible Study; Affirming Committee (exploring ways to celebrate PIE day on March 14, 2021).
  • The Library committee is exploring ways to allow congregants to borrow books safely at this time. Watch for book and podcast reviews during the announcements on Sunday mornings.

    • January 24 Hosted Virtual Coffee Hour had 11 groups, 83 participants. Please ensure your contact information in the church Directory is correct. Contact Alicia at admin@pacificspirituc.com to update.


    Chair, Doug Smart

    • Our two new trustees, Catherine Evans and Jane Murdoch were welcomed.
    • Our primary focus at the moment is the transition of Investment Advisor for funds managed by the Trustees from RBC Dominion Securities to Connor Clark & Lunn Private Capital.
    • The Trustees authorized the transfer of the following annual amounts to the Operating Fund of Pacific Spirit United Church to be distributed in four quarterly payments,

      • Bequest Fund: $3,157.00
      • Endowment Fund: $35,000.00
      • Legacy Fund: up to $150,000.00
      • Bequest Fund and the Property Development Fund: $18,100.00


    Chair, Merrilee Thompson | Council Rep, Paul Westwick

    • Worship is planning on the basis of virtual services continuing through at least to Summer Spirit, and considering the possibility of some sort of in-person services in the fall, depending of course on the pandemic outlook. We wanted to make a special call-out to thank everyone who is involved in making the on-line services such a rich experience, including both staff and lay participants.
    • We’re aiming to have most of the Sunday morning services as YouTube videos, with a zoom service about once every 6 weeks. There are benefits and challenges to both.
    • The theme for Lent and Easter is to be “Making the Invisible Visible.”



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