Clergy

Click on the photos below to read the biographies of the Ascension clergy team.

To hear some of their sermons, click here.

Rev. June pours water for a baptism

Rev. Canon June Hough

  • Office: 519-451-7780; Cell: 226-448-3790; Home: 519-601-5685; E-mail: junehough(at)rogers(dot)com

Ordained in London, Ontario, in 1986, I have served in churches in the Dioceses of Huron, Nova Scotia and Ottawa. My ministry has been as rich and varied as the parishes I have served.

When I got ordained, I was a young single woman of 27. As my ministry progressed, so did the size of my family. I now have a busy household of seven. The addition of my husband, three children, and two dogs has been a blessing, and my parishes have been an extension of that family.

Society is changing; the Church is changing. People are spiritually hungry and it’s important to find a place where questions are welcomed and love is shared, to find communities that are welcoming instead of judging, that celebrate instead of droning on about “what we used to do.” My hope is that you find that here at Ascension — a place where the Spirit is moving.

I’m a long way from the parish of my childhood in Kirkland Lake, Ontario. But I have found no matter where I go,  I can always find a community of God’s people and suddenly I ‘m not so alone.

Peace,
June

Rev. Bruce Pocock
Honouary Assistant (retired)

  • Cell: 519-870-1551; E-mail: ealing0515(at)me(dot)com
  • I was born in 1938 in Florence, Ontario, as the sixth child of seven to my parents Lawrence and Patience (Pat) Pocock. Dad was an Anglican priest who was born in Quebec, but soon moved to Brockville. He was educated at Wycliffe College and served for the most part in the Diocese of Huron. I had four sisters and two brothers. I felt strongly early in my life that I had a call to ministry, but the experience of being a P.K. (preacher’s kid) soon discouraged me from following such an idea. It was very hard to live with the thought that every transgression that you ever committed was known at the rectory before you could get home and to have your children go through the same thing. I was an enthusiastic child and remained that way through my adult years. As a result many of my more enthusiastic adventure had found their way to my home. I paid for them each of them dearly.

My dominant trait (at least from my point of view) is curiosity. I have always loved to learn things. It is a blessing and a curse. Instead of only wanting to learn, I continued to learn many things. When you know how to do many things, I find you are expected to put those skills into practice. It has kept me busy.

Education was a rocky road for me. High marks came easy in Hespeler Public School in what is now Cambridge and Ealing Public School in London. When I went into secondary school at Sir Adam Beck Collegiate Institute in London and then Ingersoll District Collegiate Institute, I found that I had many other interests such as sports, hobbies, girls, dances, extracurricular activities which took me away from my books. My marks fell sharply, but I didn’t care. When I was in grades 11, 12, and 13 at the same time, I decided that I was wasting my time and my family’s money and told my father so. I dropped out and went to work at the Royal Bank. I stayed there for five years, then went to Huron College as an adult student and spent four years there. After a particularly serious illness in which I lost three months recovering and nearly missing my whole year, I dropped out again.

It was at this time that I met Patricia. We were engaged and then married in 1966. She was a nurse in Windsor. I went to work for the Ontario Government (Community and Social Services). I was with them for about five years until I was fired. It was a difficult time for me. I very angry because I was betrayed by my co-workers who had hung me out to dry after the work I had done bargaining a contract gained for them a 36% increase in pay. It was that experience that helped my understand what it means to forgive a person and how that forgiveness can save you from wallowing in hate and anger. That firing turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me. God gave me a boot and said start working on your real career that I have chosen for you.

I went back to the University of Windsor and got my bachelor’s degree with honours. I went to work with the Ministry of Housing (Windsor Housing Authority) first as Community Relations Worker and then as a Property Manager. It was during the training for that work that God called again in no uncertain terms. It is a long story, but it boils down to the fact that the word came that I could no longer deny what I had felt when I was a child. I had to face the fact that my sons, Lawrence and David, would have to learn to be a P.K.s. as I had.

I finished my Master’s of Divinity at Huron in two years. Pat had become the Director of Perioperative Nursing in St. Joseph’s Hospital in London. I graduated with my M.Div in 1978 and spent my first two years in ordained ministry as the Assistant Curate for Bishop Cronyn Memorial Anglican Church in London. In March of 1980, I became the Rector of Holy Trinity, Lucan with St. James’, Clandeboye and stayed there until the end of June 2003 (the longest serving Rector of that parish.) It was a great love which continues even to this day. I loved the country and loved being a “country parson”.

After I retired, my son and I designed and built a house. I call it “Bruce’s folly”. It adds to the list of my many accomplishments. I have worked as a farm labourer, a warehouse receiver, a lineworker at Chrysler’s, a tunnel maintenance worker, an aircraftman with the RCAF (Radar), an Officer with the Canadian Army (I have enough time to be a veteran although every unit I belonged to was closed down by the government), a medical attendant on a psychiatric ward, a teacher in nursing schools and a community college as well as community worker, a property manager and a banker. I always felt God had taught me well for the work of ministry, but I have never resolved the lifelong conflict that I have had with myself: “Am I the world most successful failure, or the world’s most failing success?”

After retirement from active ministry, I didn’t want to be a weight around the neck of the new rector in Lucan, so I came to the then-new East London Anglican Ministries (the original name of Church of the Ascension) to serve for Rev. Michael Johnston and stayed on to serve Rev. June Hough when she came. The three of us had all been at Huron together. I have been with ELAM/Ascension ever since.

I guess having come into the ministry at such a late date, I still have much to do to catch up to the years I spent apart from the work that the Lord had called me to so long ago, but if the truth be known, I love ministry, I love the people, I love the message, I love the Lord and it is my honour to serve as an Associate Priest here, and a genuine privilege to serve you all.

God bless,
Bruce

Pastor Jim Garey
Honourary Assistant (retired)

  • Home: 519-850-1701; Cell 519-670-7088; E-mail prjim(at)yahoo(dot)com
  • What’s a Lutheran doing on the clergy team at Church of the Ascension? It’s really quite simple. The Full Communion agreement between the Anglican Church of Canada and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada makes it possible. This accord, known as the Waterloo Declaration, was signed in Waterloo, Ont.

The heart of the Waterloo Declaration says; “Full communion is understood as a relationship between two distinct churches or communions in which each maintains its own autonomy while recognizing the catholicity [belonging to one church] and apostolicity [a succesion of leadership dating back to Jesus Christ’s earliest followers] of the other, and believing the other to hold the essentials of the Christian faith. In such a relationship, communicant members of each church would be able freely to communicate [take communion] at the altar of the other, and there would be freedom of ordained ministers to officiate sacramentally in either church.”

In my own case I retired from full-time ministry in April 2011 after 39 years, the last twelve at Trinity Lutheran Church in London. Church policy required that I leave Trinity to clear the decks for a successor. After a couple months of “church shopping,” my wife and I visited ELAM, as Ascension was then known, and there has been no looking back. Warmly welcomed, we felt right at home from the first Sunday. When Rev. June Hough asked me to serve as an honourary associate, it was, so to speak, the icing on the cake.

I was ordained in Ohio Synod in 1972. I served rural parishes in Ohio for nine years, before being called to the Eastern Canada Synod of the Lutheran Church in 1981. I served Northern Ontario parishes in Massey and Sault Ste. Marie, where I was involved in many joint Anglican-Lutheran projects. My parish, Zion Lutheran Church, and neighbouring St. Matthew’s Anglican Church were specifically appointed by our bishops to be pacesetter congregations in the on-going Anglican-Lutheran dialogue. That led to joint worship services, pulpit exchanges, and joint youth activities. I was named an ecumenical canon of the Diocese of Algoma in 1999. Hanging with Anglicans is nothing new to me.

I have a B.A. in Sociology from the Ohio State University, and an M.Div. from Wittenberg University. I am an active member of the Kiwanis service club, where I have been a Distinguished Lieutenant Governor. My wife Sue and myself were married in 1968. She is a retired French teacher.

It’s a joy to be able to continue in ministry in our new church home at Ascension.

God bless,
Jim

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