We were delighted to visit with the whole family last Sunday. They joined us for our barbecue. Nabil and Rawaa were fasting for Ramadan, but the children enjoyed food and treats. They had a great time and expressed thanks afterward. This kind of contact is very important.
The ESL classes for Nabil are progressing. As soon as there is a place in day care Rawaa will also be attending. We are awaiting word from the city.
The boys love their school. Both of them have made friends. Yamen is especially proud of his school work. He never misses a chance to show it to visitors. His English is quite good.
Their happiness in Canada is without question but there are times when Rawaa misses her mother quite a bit as can be expected.
Each day we are with them we see a family who is responsible, happy and thankful for the chance to live here. They have become part of our lives.
On June 1, the Rev. Dr. Jim Czegledi joined our staff as Pastoral Visitor. Jim is contracted to work the equivalent of two days a week, visiting our homebound members, those who are ill at home, and Nursing Home residents. Jim has led congregations in Orillia, London, and Whitby. He also served Trinity Church as Interim Minister. From 1999 – 2007 he served the PCC as an Associate Secretary in the Life and Mission Agency. Jim now works as a Professional Speaker and Leadership Coach. He often works with Retirement Home and Funeral Home Staff. He is a graduate of Bishop’s University, Knox College, and Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Jim will report to Laurence and work alongside the Pastoral Care Ministry Team, supporting our faithful lay and elder visitors. He will visit hospitals and respond to emergencies when Laurence is unable to do so. This summer he will be available for all pastoral needs while Laurence is on vacation. Jim will also provide training for visitors. He will be with us in worship Sunday, June 11. Please offer him a warm Glenview welcome.
We have a new administrative staff person in the Church Office. Metumo Hiwilepo will serve in this new position, covering both administration and bookkeeping. Metumo and her daughter, Kuo are part of our congregation already. Metumo has a Bachelor of Accountancy Degree from the University of Namibia. Her continuing education has included courses in auditing, computer skills, fundraising, and transitioning from accounting practice overseas to working in Canada. She has extensive work and volunteer experience in office settings and in front-line customer service in the United Kingdom, Namibia, and Canada.
For the next few weeks Metumo will work closely with our Interim Bookkeeper, Senior Minister, and the volunteers who have been covering administration since January. Please be patient. Between now and the end of June the Church Office will be in transition. Metumo's learning curve will be steep.
We will continue with limited open office hours until further notice - Mon - Fri, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The office will be staffed from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day, so there will always be someone to take your call or respond to your message.
There will be a service to celebrate the life of the Rev. Rodger Hunter at Glenview on Saturday, June 10, at 11:00 a.m. Everyone is welcome.
Rodger's association with Glenview ran long and deep. His death came as a great shock to many people. For the last years of his life he served Glenview as Pastoral Visitor. Roger's great passion was the mission he founded, Boarding Homes Ministries. Rodger and the teams of visitors he recruited from churches in and around Toronto, brought companionship and joy to many people who live in boarding homes. Though they have many neighbours, boarding homes residents still lead solitary lives.
Rodger loved good food and music (especially jazz and classic rock) and he loved to share both with his friends. Rodger did not want a funeral for himself. His family and so many friends want to celebrate his life and, with his daughter Cristina, we are planning a service that will be as un-funeral-like as possible. The usual reception in the Church Hall will follow. To honour Rodger we will then light the barbecues and share in one of his favourite meals.
A dedicated group of volunteers from Glenview took part in the City of Toronto's Community Spring Clean up by filling several garbage bags worth of trash in the Blythwood Ravine
The family is heavily involved in ESL and they are doing well. Andrew Woodbury, known to many on our congregation, is is our main teacher. He is an ESL specialist and has recruited some of his colleagues to help. We are grateful to Andrew for his enthusiastic acceptance of our invitation to volunteer. A neighbour of Glenview, Nahla Ghoneim, an engineer from Egypt, responded to news on our website and volunteered to help in any way she can. She has joined the ESL roster. She speaks Arabic, of course, and has great teaching skills. Our volunteer teachers offer two to three sessions each week. Nabil and Rawaa continue to attend classes twice per week. They still have a long way to go but it has been much better since we started these private lessons.
Rawaa had her 27th birthday a few days ago. Tim S. was able to go to the apartment with a card and to wish her Happy Birthday.
The family attended Pancake Tuesday at the church. They are still getting used to Canadian food! The adults ate pancakes and halal sausages, as did Yaman but Yamen is very fussy! The family also attended Out of the Cold on Sunday, March 5. Nabil and the boys had fun setting the tables with placemats and cutlery. We're grateful Andrew and Nayla were also able to come to the pancake supper.
Nabil is very proud of his new glasses. The doctor at the Women's College Hospital Refugee Clinic recommended an eye exam. Nabil's last exam was seven years ago and he has had difficulty for some time. Eyecare is another benefit of the federal government's refugee resettlement program.
As always, thanks to everyone for ongoing contributions. We continue to be able to provide support for the Orabis from within the circle of Glenview and the University Women's Club, and our neighbourhood.
Please accept the Orabi family’s gracious invitation to a reception in their home on March 30th, 7 to 9 pm. For details and to RSVP by March 26th contact Dan Melhem at dmelhem [at] rogers.com or leave a message for Dan at the church office (416-488-1156).
Well, viral when compared to our other videos! The video we posted on Facebook on January 30 has attracted over 3700 views in one week! Watch Jacques Arsenault stepdance. His performance was the Grand Finale of the entertainment that followed Glenview's 92nd Anniversary Luncheon on January 29.
UPDATE ON THE ORABIS
Our team had their monthly budget meeting with the Orabi family last Wednesday. It was a good meeting. The team discussed some of the things going on at Rose Avenue School: Valentine's Day, report card day and school music days. Rawaa blushed when Valentine’s Day was mentioned. Apparently it means something different in Syria! Since they missed parent teacher interviews in mid-January, scheduling one in February was suggested. They agreed and will do so.
There was a great discussion on the happenings in Quebec City and the general issues in the world directed at Muslims. Although Rawaa was a bit frightened, they know that these incidents are rare in Canada and that we are all behind them 100%. They are part of our church family and we support them completely. It made them feel good to have this conversation.
Last Saturday our team took the family to the Adonis grocery to shop for food. That is always a fun time. The kids love whipping around the store with the buggy! After discussing their English classes with Nabil and Rawaa team members felt they need to be in a program where they will learn more. This is their desire.
After a long wait the whole family will visit the clinic at Women’s College Hospital later this month. This is good news.
Thank you for your continued support of our sponsorship of this wonderful family from Syria!
WE WILL SOON NEED support to cover dental expenses for Nabil and Rawaa. More details to come. The children's dental care is covered by a city program.
THANKS! as always to Tim Steele and Dan Melhem for the many hours they continue to spend with the Orabis.
Thank you to Joan Neilson
On Sunday, January 22, following the celebration of the Sacrament of Baptism, Glenview recognized Joan Neilson's many years of work for the Canadian Bible Society. Joan has presented Bibles to baptized children for more years than anyone can remember! She says ten years, but we know it's many more than that. Everyone in the congregation who received a Bible from Joan, or whose child received one raised a hand. It was a wonderful sight!
If you have a memory of Joan presenting a Bible to you or your child(ren), please share it as a comment below. Include the year the Bible was given.
Come and celebrate our congregation's birthday!
We will celebrate Glenview's 92nd Anniversary on Sunday, January 29, 2017. There will be one service at 10:30 a.m. We will celebrate Holy Communion.
Our Guest Preacher for Anniversary will be the Rev. Helen Smith, who recently retired from ministry after serving in Ontario and Alberta. For nine years she was Program Director at Evangel Hall Mission. In 2014 Helen was honoured as a Presbyterian Woman of Faith. In 2015 she was a candidate for Moderator of General Assembly.
After the service please join in a luncheon in the Church Hall. The meal will be catered so our faithful kitchen volunteers are free to relax and eat. Tickets will be available starting on Sunday, January 15. (Adults $25 and Children $5) Last year's Anniversary Lunch was a sold-out feast.
Entertainment after Lunch: Let P. E. Islander Jacques Arsenault and Nova Scotian Laurence DeWolfe take you on a Visit to the Maritimes in Song and Story. Glenview's first Kitchen Party.
Video now online
ON SUNDAY DECEMBER 4 we had a wonderful time meeting Nabil, Rawaa, Yamen, Yaman, and Arwa Orabi. Thanks to everyone who came to welcome them with so much enthusiasm. Special thanks to members of our team and their helpers who prepared for the event and brought some special Syrian treats for us all to enjoy. And thanks to our partners in sponsorship, the North Toronto chapter of the Canadian Federation of University Women. We can't forget Tim Steele, who chaired the event, our bus driver Harold McDonald, photographer Jim Campbell, and (of course!) our faithful translator Dan Melhem. Click on the picture below to see the next one, and the one after that...
Thanks to Glenview's photographer Jim Campbell for capturing these images from our December 3rd Christmas fair.
Saturday, December 3, 10am to 2pm
The Christmas Fair is a wonderful showcase. Premium baked goods, preserves and sauces, Christmas merchandise and gifts, hand made ornaments, candles, decorations, and stocking stuffers. Silent Auction items include two quilts.
Sunday, November 6 at Terminal 1: The Orabi family arrived at last! Photos by Jim Campbell. Check out Jim Campbell's photos in this Flickr album. We are so happy the family has arrived. They are settled in their apartment after a long day of travel. Now the work begins, as we support them in their new life in Canada. Thanks for all the support so far, including welcome gifts, from Glenview and the North Toronto chapter of Canadian Federation of University Women. And we are deeply grateful to Rob Shropshire of PWS&D, our partner at every step of the way. Last, but really first, thanks to Dan and Tim for all you have done and will continue to do.
New Travel Arrangements Confirmed for November 6
We have confirmation of the Orabi family's travel to Toronto. We expect them to arrive on the evening of Sunday, November 6. Let us pray for good health for everyone in the family and no more obstacles in their path to Canada.