Due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, almost all church programs, as well as programs of outside users and renters of the church building, are suspended until at least after Labour Day. The major exception is the Community Breakfast, which will continue on the third Thursday of each month, but delivered to the tent city at the Western Fair grounds and to social agencies.
Ministries and programs are the heart of Church of the Ascension. Every Sunday, we bring the world into our church; every day our mission — our Great Commission from Christ — is to take the church into the world.
Here’s a two-minute feature on a few of the recent projects we have done in the community under the name of “Pick a Partner”:
Here is the full list of our programs and ministries with links to more information below:
|Care & Compassion||Building Community||Outreach|
|Teaching & Learning||Worship|
As well, we have a five-year (2018-2022) Mission and Ministry Plan to guide our planning over the next few years.
Care & Compassion
Each Sunday, a list of people who have requested prayers is printed in the worship bulletins. There are a number of reasons that we pray for people – illness, unemployment, grief, to name only a few. Members of the church are encouraged to pray for these people during the week.
This is a confidential service for urgent needs of anyone, whether a church member or not. A small, trained group of chuch members make it a discipline of their lives to pray for names on this list.
This group educates parishioners on health and advocates for those needing access to the health-care system, including helping them navigate the system. Responding to the Gospel call for compassion and healing service, this team seeks to fulfill the call to charity and love as expressed in the Gospel story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). As Jesus points out in this story, we are called to be “neighbours” to one another and to offer compassionate care and healing. Christians through the ages have generously responded to people in need of care. Charity, the love of Christ, is at the heart of each team members response to those in need of assistance. We seek to offer Christ’s presence through our presence with our community and neighbours.
Members of this ministry take Communion to our home-bound (shut-in) parishioners on a monthly basis.
While praying for the recipient, volunteers knit or crochet squares that are later joined together into a prayer shawl. Each colour of wool reflects a desired blessing. The shawl is then given free to the recipient.
The ACW meets regularly on the first and third Mondays of the month at 1:30 p.m. The women have a time of fellowship together and host special events such as card parties and fashion shows throughout the year.
The knitters and crocheters meet on Mondays at 10 a.m. The end time is flexible, but some stay through lunch. The group is open to both experienced people and learners. The experienced are happy to teach. Lively conversation is also part of the session.
The quilters meet Mondays from 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the church to work on quilts, although some who aren’t quilters bring their knitting and join the group for the company. Although their work brings in income for the church, the members speak first of friendships when they’re asked what they get out of the group. Quilters can be asked to make or repair quilts for you. They also work on quilts for organizations such as the Women’s Community House and Mission Services.
The Feed My Sheep free Community Breakfast is held on the third Tuesday of each month, from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., at the church. Both cold and hot breakfast foods are served. All are welcome to come for breakfast.
This is a group open to all in the community to meet a need for seniors to have a safe place where they could come for fellowship and social time. It combines a variety of music styles, including country and 1950s rock, with lunch from noon to 3 p.m. on the last Thursday of the month (excluding summer). Some people who have attend these events have made donations and all monies have been donated to the church
This Social Justice Commitment is a response to the Gospel call to bear witness to God’s healing love in a broken world. Inspired by a vision of a spirit-filled community of hope, Church of the Ascension seeks to share in the creation of a more just and peaceful world. Ascension strives to make a positive impact in a world of suffering through a theology of action in response to God’s call.
- Ark Aid Street Mission: Stockings are filled with gifts, toiletries, etc. for those using Ark Aid’s services at Christmas.
- Christmas Share: Daily Bread Food Bank at St. Paul’s Anglican Cathedral in the centre of our city uses cash donations to buy gift cards, so that those without at Christmas may purchase what they would like most to give and receive. Bring your donation to church in late November.
- Daily Bread Food Bank: Non-perishable food items, personal care products, reusable shopping bags, and clean 250-500 ml containers are collected for the Daily Bread Food Bank based at St. Paul’s Anglican Cathedral in downtown London. As an optional hint to its congregation, Ascension suggests a “Food of the Month” each month:
- January – peanut butters, jam and other spreads
- February – soup
- March – canned vegetables
- April – personal care products such as toothpaste and deodorant
- May – breakfast foods
- June – canned fruit
- July – baby food
- August – vegetables
- September – rice
- October – canned and bagged beans
- November – canned fish and meat
- December – pasta and sauce or mac-and-cheese kits (e.g., Kraft Dinner)
- Eye glasses: Old eye glasses are collected and refurbished for use by people in developing countries. (Please do not donate eye glass cases. They cannot be shipped due to space and weight restrictions.)
- Hearing aids: Old hearing aids are collected and refurbished for use by people in developing countries.
- Mission Services of London: New kitchen linens, can openers, cutlery, personal care items (toothpaste, deodorant, soap), scarves, hats, mitts for the five branches of Mission Services: Men’s Mission, Quinton Warner House, Rotholme, Mental Health, and Mission Store.
- Monica Place: A “baby shower” is held yearly to provided items for this home for unwed moms in Waterloo, Ontario
- Pop can tabs: Tabs are collected and donated to organizations that sell them to scrap metal dealers and use the cash to purchase wheelchairs for children with disabilities.
- Postage stamps: Used stamps are donated to the Canadian Bible Society, which sell them to collectors to raise money for its programs.
- Wool: We collect odds bits of wool to make prayer shawls — shawls knit with prayer — for people going through illness, injury, or trauma. It’s a way to find a use for partial balls of wool left over from other projects.
Teaching & Learning
A Bible Study takes place every Wednesday morning following the 9:30 am worship service, often taking a break for the months of June, July, and August, and over Christmas and New Year’s All are welcome to attend.
Special educational series may be held occasionally throughout the year especially during Lent or Advent seasons. These series may involve Bible or book studies, courses regarding aspects of church life and more. Information will be in the Sunday bulletin prior to any series start.
The Sunday School has designed a curriculum that meets the needs of children and youth with a variety of learning styles through arts, music, quiet learning and physical games. We have seasonal activities and multi-week themes to help children, age 4 to 12, understand their church, the Bible, and their Anglican faith. A nursery is available for children younger than 4. Sunday School is held from September to June during the worship service at 10 a.m. on Sundays. Children begin the service in church with everyone and have a short, interactive Children’s Time near the beginning of the service after which children and teachers head out to classes. They return in time for the Eucharist, which is the climax of Anglican worship.
Ascension often hosts theological students to assist them in their training to become a member of clergy. A handful of parish members are chosen to become members of Learning Support Groups for the students while they are at Ascension, giving them feedback on their parish work.
The team supports the weekly 10 a.m. worship service by providing audio and video work, including projecting the complete service on screen. Besides its work with the weekly worship services, this team also provides A/V support for other events in the church.
Guild members perform duties in the sanctuary on the Saturday before services, such as preparing the altar, linens, communion items, and memorial flowers, etc.
Teams volunteer to provide beverages and snacks for Coffee Hour, a social time held after the 10:00 a.m. worship service. They are also responsible for setup and cleanup the parish hall and kitchen for the coffee hour.
Counters are scheduled on a rotating basis to count the weekly donations immediately after Communion at the 10 a.m. Sunday service.
On Sunday mornings, greeters are a welcoming face at the door. They’re also there to assist people entering the church – holding open doors or directing them to specific locations in the building.
They assist the clergy at communion by serving the wine during communion.
Memorial Altar Flowers
Flowers are place in the sanctuary every Sunday. Donations for Memorial Altar Flowers are always appreciated. A schedule is posted on the Memorial Wall, and envelopes are beside the Parish Mail Slots in the Gathering Space to use for donations.
Music at Ascension’s 10 a.m. Sunday church service is a unique blend of a contemporary style with a jazz-blues vibe along with some traditional hymns set in an updated style. Our music director, Alex Baerg, is a pianist, conductor and singer. Volunteer musicians play guitar, keyboard, and flute at various times. The choir provides choral accompaniment to Easter and Christmas worship services. Learn more by clicking for the Music page.
They read the passages from the Bible during the service.
Wearing white robes, these people carry the cross and candles during the opening and closing of the service and help the clergy throughout the service, especially at communion time.
These people hand out bulletins outlining the service for the day as people enter the sanctuary and collect the offering.
The Bishop of Huron has asked that every parish/regional ministry in the Diocese create a Mission and Ministry Plan for the five- year period 2018-2022, to be submitted to Annual Vestry 2018. The intention is to identify a way forward for every part of the Diocese, with clearly identified mission purpose and concrete goals to support that purpose.
The template is divided into sections: five based on the Five Marks of Mission, and others on Ministry and Leadership, Congregational Health, Long-term Future, Buildings, and Finances. Each section includes an explanation and room for goal-setting.
Ascension’s Plan as a PowerPoint presentation:
Ascension’s Plan in the original template (pdf):
There are several ways you can support Ascension:
- Arrange for weekly donation envelopes by speaking to our Envelope Secretary, Sandra Colbert
- Sign up for pre-authorized givings from your bank by printing off this Pre-Authorized Givings Form and following the instructions on the middle of the three panels. (Our treasurer is Bill McKinstry.)
- Increasing your pre-authorized givings by filling out this PAG Change Form, saving it and emailing it to Hayley James at the Diocese of Huron.