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  • Writer's pictureSt Clements Church Toronto

A Glimpse of Pastoral Care

Rev. Liska Stefko


If you want to get a glimpse of pastoral care at St. Clement’s, imagine a shimmering web of connections: tiny threads of phone calls, emails, and neighbourly catch-ups, woven together in a larger life system of community. The Pastoral Care Team seeks to support the many interwoven threads that make up our community, particularly among members who may not be able to make it out to church regularly in-person.

One such set of friendships is nurtured by Trish Coulter, a member of the Pastoral Care Team. Trish stays in regular contact with Alma Stoneman and Joan Woodland, both long-time members of St. Clement’s who now live at a seniors’ residence. Trish recalls being welcomed to the parish nearly 40 years ago by Alma, who was serving as a warden at that time. She remembers Alma’s warm and caring nature, which she shared freely at the parish community lunch, as well as at a local hospice. These days, Trish, Alma and Joan stay connected through visits over a cup of tea in the cafe at their residence. Other times, they share communion that has been consecrated at our Sunday Eucharist.

In addition to these regular visits from Trish, Joan finds that the live streamed Sunday services form another vital link to the parish. Most Sunday mornings, Joan attends an in-person worship service at her residence, and then has lunch while tuning into a St. Clement’s service online. Some days it’s the 9:30am service, other days it’s the 11am service. Joan is enthusiastic in her praise for the online services. She says that she loves to see the church, to listen to the music and the sermons, and to participate fully in the worship experience: “I don’t feel like I’m missing out…I feel like I’m right there with you!” We are so blessed by the faithfulness of Alma, Trish and Joan, and the ways in which they continue to build up the St. Clement’s community.

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