It was a full house at St. John the Divine, Onoway on Thursday, October 18, for the induction service of the Rev. Cheryl Boulet. The parish came out in full, along with visitors and members of the clergy from all around the diocese. It was indeed a celebration of this new ministry in Onoway and the atmosphere was full of joy and anticipation.
The only sadness in the evening was the absence of Bishop Jane, who had fallen ill earlier in the day and was unable to attend. In her place, however, the Ven. Lee Bezanson stepped in and conducted the service adeptly and with his usual good humour. His sermon focused on the choices we all make as we follow in Jesus' footsteps and the fact that we are continually stretched and called forward in our faith. He likened it to the Olympic high jump event, where they never bring the bar down! It is always raised, challenging the athlete to reach for more.
The service of induction itself always follows the same beautiful and meaningful pattern. After the license for the new minister is read to the congregation, as it was on this occasion by the Ven. Alan Perry, members of the parish come in turn to present symbols of the ministry to their new priest.
After the service, the celebration continued in the downstairs hall, known at St. John the Divine as their "Holy Grounds Bistro," where the ACW had prepared a feast and a special cake for the occasion. The Rev. Armand Mercier also made a special presentation of a prayer book on behalf of the Prayer Book Society.
A service of induction is meant to be the blessing of a new minister and the parish to which she or he has been called. For Rev. Cheryl, it was an evening full of encouragement. “I felt extremely blessed and supported by, not only the congregation and visitors, but also by all the clergy who were in attendance. It was an absolutely spirit-filled evening and I give thanks to our ever loving Father in heaven, whose presence was certainly felt throughout!”