Glynis' Story

In the spring of 2009,  I told Elizabeth I wanted to serve the Lord and I asked about becoming a Deacon.   It was the Parish of All Saints which I wanted to serve as the congregation had done so much for me.  They opened their doors welcoming mum and I when we left another parish, embracing and continually praying for me through the years when my mental illness began to take over my daily life.  Elizabeth gave me some options and suggested I go and think what I would like to do.  I did so and prayed for guidance.  I decided I needed input from my parents so I started with Dad, as he was the one with the most knowledge and would take the subject with open arms and not judge or comment - or so I thought.  This is how the conversation went:

Me: Dad I have something I want to discuss with you - it's something positive

Dad: I'm listening (peering over his glasses)

Me: I want to serve the Lord

Dad: and?

Me: I want to go to school to become a Deacon.

Dad (with a big grin on his face - remember Dad came from a little town in England and also went to an all boys Anglican School) "You want to what???"

Me: I want to go to school to become a Deacon.

Dad: "You mean a 'grave digger'

Me: NO!

Dad: Well, that's what Deacons do! (while killing himself laughing)

After this conversation I decided not to tell mum but continued to look into the training and schooling I would need.  The next week I returned to Elizabeth's office to continue our conversation.  This time she said she had another idea - for me to become a Verger and she described what that involved.

Elizabeth's friend Nancy was a verger at St George's in Fort Langley and wouldbe willing to act as Mentor for me.  I agreed and was excited to start my "official training". As I had not been confirmed this was the first step so I joined confirmation classes with Kathleen and Mitch Gillis as my classmates.  Mitch was baptized at the Easter Vigil of that year and then became my confirmation partner.  There were many members of the congregation in attendance.  My parents and family were present as well (little did my dad know that it would not be the last time that year he would be in the church!).  Many photos were taken of Mitch and I.  Later on in the year you could often hear Mitch stating the facts "it was me and her (pointing at Kathleen) not me and you!"  I laughed at him!

As the year progressed the next step was more technical.  I would need vestments and a virge.  Sue Paege sewed my cassock while my Godmother on Vancouver Island made my chimere (without using a pattern incidentally) so this meant many trips on hot and crowded BC Ferrries followed by travel on a smelly pacific coach stage bus.  Dad had started to do woodwork so he took on the challenge of making my virge (that is a separate tale in itself).

Nancy, Elizabeth and I set a date for my commissioning - Thanksgiving Sunday 2009.  Again, many people attended including vergers from other parishes.  Also Archbishop Hambidge.  My chimere was presented to me by Sue, the Virge was blessed by Archbishop Hambidge and I was presented with my certificate by Nancy.  Pictures, my certificate and a place for my verge to rest can be found in the hallway that leads to the library.  Also there on the wall is another certificate stating that I am a member of the Verger's Guild.  I am grateful to have been a part of All Saints for so long, through prolonged absences I know I am still remembered, loved and prayed for and that is a very comforting thought.

Flower Pearson