Dear Friends,


Please join us this Sunday for our final “summer hours” worship service at 9:30 a.m. On September 10, we return to our regular schedule of two services, 8:00 and 10:15 a.m.


There will be special music this Sunday featuring Cara Gilbertson and Grayson Nesbitt of the St John’s Choir and Bytown School of Singing. We planned it together with the scripture texts and themes amplified in the words of the hymns and the feel of ancient chants. Looking forward to seeing you on Sunday!




PS Great showing of St John’s at the Pride Parade – check out the pictures below.



St John’s joined the other welcoming Anglican congregations with a shared decorated vehicle. There was room for anyone who needed a ride to sit comfortably, plus the driver made patterns on the horn that brought cheers from the crowd. Before the parade started moving, we were staged along Laurier Avenue between the United Church and Jewish delegations. Our ringing church bell welcomed us as we reached St John’s. Further on in the parade, a group of protesters gathered on the steps of another church. Several groups converged around them with rainbows, cheers and signs with positive messages of inclusion.

As we walked, people in the crowd spoke to us – they thanked us for marching to show that inclusive welcoming churches really do exist. Along the whole route, we were accompanied by cheering and clapping – marching in a Pride Parade really is a joy-filled experience.


Frances Macdonnell accompanied our worship with beautiful music through the month of August – Thank you very much!! Looking forward to wonderful music this Sunday presented by Cara Gilbertson and Grayson Nesbitt.



Now that we are well past pandemic restrictions on meeting in person, it’s time to update our Safe Church practices. We have guidelines especially to ensure the safety of anyone who is vulnerable, including children and people with special needs, but Safe Church is bigger than that. Safe Church is our intentional practice of making sure that when you enter our community you feel safe. This means each person’s dignity respected regardless of age, economic status, mental health, or where you identify on the spectrum of 2SLGBTQQIA+.


If you have (or would like to have) a leadership role at St John’s, we invite you to renew your familiarity with Safe Church practices by joining one of our training sessions this September. If you have a ministry role that is engaged with children or people who are vulnerable, have access to confidential information about members of our community, or engage with the general public on behalf of St John’s, you are required to have a Police Records check. Your participation will help us prevent unsafe behaviour or actions so that when we call St John’s Holy Ground it really is a safe space.


Safe Church Training Sessions

Tuesday, September 12, 7:00 p.m. (on Zoom)

Thursday, September 14, 4 p.m. (on Zoom)

Sunday, September 17, 12:00 noon (in person in the Parish Hall)


Let us know which one you plan to attend HERE


We are looking ahead to our Christmas Market on Saturday, November 25, 12-4 PM.

If you’re an artist or craftsperson, we would love to hear from you. We want this first-ever Christmas Market to be a great event – the more the merrier! If you’re interested or have friends you would like to invite to participate, find out more from Jill Moll


Our Home and Treaty Land: Walking Our Creation Story

Saturdays: September 9, September 23, October 4 - 9:30 a.m.

St John's Parish Hall

This is our book study for early fall. It is written as a dialogue between Rev. Dr. Raymond Aldred, a status Cree and Rev. Dr. Matthew Anderson, a settler-descended biblical scholar.

"Treaty is the key to the shared narrative, shared spirituality and shared respect for the land." Through each author's chapters we learn the importance of understanding what Treaty meant to First Nations and to Newcomers. Accepting the truth of what happened is the first step in reconciliation.

Each session is different - come to all three!


Copies are available at Perfect Books on Elgin Street.


Help make your community safer by participating in CoSA Ottawa's fall volunteer training. CoSA works with people who have been incarcerated for sexual offences and voluntarily seek CoSA’s help to develop a meaningful and safe life in our community. Trained and screened volunteers and a ‘core member’ form a ‘circle’, meeting regularly to fulfill this goal, striving for No More Victims.

Five training sessions (Sept 18 to Nov 23) will be held virtually via Zoom, from 6-8pm, with a final session offered to approved volunteers. Admittance is free, participants must be a minimum age of 21 years old, and a certificate will be issued to participants who complete all training sessions. 

To learn more and to register, click here, or contact


Osiyo Nigad (Hello Everyone)!

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is coming on September 30. It is also Orange Shirt Day. Here are some websites of Indigenous-owned companies that have Orange Shirts:

You can also learn more about Orange Shirt Day here:

I have 6 tickets to the following play.

Bloodline: A Play by Elder Albert Dumont and Phil Jenkins

For National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, the OPL and NAC are hosting "Bloodline" a play examining the harmful Indian Act

Thursday, September 28, 2023, 7:00pm – 8:30pm

National Arts Centre - Fourth Stage - 1 Elgin Street Ottawa, ON K1P 5K6

If you would like to join us, please let me know.

I also have a few more booklets of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), please let me know if you would like a copy.

Kimberly Johnson-Breen

St John's Indigenous Engagement Coordinator


Our Parish

Gary, Allen, Kimberly, Kerry, Jesse, Stephen, Brian, Michelle, Jill and all who minister at St John's.

Our Diocese

  • Shane, our Bishop; Anne, our Metropolitan; Linda, our Primate
  • St. James, Leitrim
  • All Saints, Greely, The Reverend Nash Smith
  • St. Mary’s, Russell, The Reverend Dr. Anne Quick, Priest-In-Charge

Anglican Church of Canada (ACC)

The theological colleges and training programs within the Ecclesiastical Province of Rupert’s Land: Arthur Turner Training School, the Centre for Christian Studies, the College of Emmanuel and St. Chad, Henry Budd College for Ministry, Saint John’s

College, Dr. William Winter School for Ministry, James Settee College for Ministry


The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, Bishop Susan Johnson and Bishop Michael Pryse


The Season of Creation and a renewed commitment to a healthy relationship with

the Earth

The Anglican Communion from Aba to Zululand

The Diocese of Jerusalem and Archbishop Hosam Naoum

Parish Prayer Group

If you wish to have someone prayed for send an email to:


At Pat Hutchison’s request, you are invited to remember her in your prayers over the coming weeks. Here’s Pat at a happy coming together of friends from St John’s: Bea, Pat, and Gay!




 154 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, ON K2P 0H8


The Reverend Canon Gary van der Meer, Rector

The Reverend Canon Allen Box, Honorary Assistant 

Kimberly Johnson-Breen, Indigenous Engagement Coordinator  

Stephen Giles, Rector’s Warden

Michelle Smulders, Deputy Rector's Warden

Brian Cameron, People's Warden 

Jill Moll, Deputy People's Warden

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