Sue Raynor, an Oakville neighbour who is also a chorister at St. John’s United Church, introduced me to the organizer of the Women’s Fellowship group. She kindly mentioned my new memoir, Rag Dolls and Rage, and suggested I appear as a speaker at a Fellowship meeting. This led to Pamela Rowledge attending my book launch last September. Pamela bought my memoir and arranged for me to speak at the church’s Fellowship meeting a couple of weeks ago.

I enjoyed meeting the members, selling a few books, and answering questions about my charity of choice, SAVIS of Halton. I’m also happy to report that the Fellowship voted to donate some of their funds to SAVIS (they collect and donate yearly to several local charities). It all helps. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Sue and Pamela for making this all happen. The ladies seemed interested in my story and asked some thoughtful questions afterwards.

Although not a church-goer for a long time, I must say that since I myself have begun attending services once or twice a month, I have been enjoying Minister Sheila Murray’s sermons, which always have a focus on some social aspect such as inclusion, kindness, etc. through personal little vignettes (or should I say parables?). As well, the beautiful choir and solo singers, the piano and bell music, and the midday chatting over tea with the community afterwards, is good nourishment for the soul. (Better than chicken soup.)

One is reminded of the good that many people want to do for others. I see it in the congregation’s acceptance of each other and new visitors, their desire to volunteer for committees, their outreach programs such as food banks.

St. John’s United Church is located at 262 Randall Street in downtown Oakville. Their mission statement, in part: “We are called to be a caring people, reaching out to each other, our neighbours, and all God’s people. We are committed to nurturing our Christian faith through worship, study, fellowship and service. We are striving to exemplify the life and the love of Jesus Christ.”

This is a beautiful church, built in the 1800s. It has a rich history, and hosts many social activities such as community meals, bible teachings, and so on. Come on over, some time. Perhaps we’ll bump into each other.