Greetings William,

Have you ever been in a refugee camp? My first time was when I ran the Bethlehem Half Marathon which was a memorable experience in itself. To my astonishment the route took us past this gate marked with a key (the symbol for returning home) in and through the Aida Refugee Camp where close to 6,000 Palestinian refugees live. It is one of 58 refugee camps for 7 million Palestinians around the world, including two camps that I also saw in Gaza City. Seeing Palestinian refugees in camps, some for 50 years, has left a lasting impression on me.

Bishop Asbil has declared this Refugee Sunday in the Diocese. With all the news of now millions of Ukrainian refugees, I am reminded that Jesus our Lord and Saviour was a refugee. 

Remember thatJesus and his Nazareth family, remember, were living in territory occupied by the Roman empire, quite like the Russians occupying Ukrainian territory and Israel occupying Palestinian territory. In these and countless other cases the occupied have no state status, no passport nor right of citizenship, and so many flee. The Holy Family were forced to pay Roman taxes in Bethlehem but then fled to Egypt for safety.

Somehow they found a right of return, although millions today don't. For the rest of his life Jesus was itinerant, homeless, always relying on the generosity of others, and yes, a refugee. 

This Sunday as we welcome the Rev'd Dr Das Sydney, head of the Canadian Council of Churches, and the clergy and people from Port Hope area churches, I am also reminded of the work that we, the followers of Jesus, are called to do in supporting refugees around the world. In Palestine I knew the work of UNRWA trying feebly to support Palestinian refugees. With the huge pressure now of millions of Ukrainian refugees the UN's High Commission for Refugees, is needing support 

Supplementing the UN's refugee work, thanks be to God for the ACT Alliance (Action of Churches Working Together), The World Council of Churches. And many know abo AURA The Anglican United Refugee Alliance that does amazing work in assisting refugee settlement in Canada. Many parishioners helped with the Syrian refugees and now Ukrainian refugee sponsorship programs. It was so wonderful to welcome to our service last Sunday the newly arrived Skliar family from Ukraine. Young Tima is even interested in joining the junior choir!

It is difficult work, but it is Jesus work. And as Jesus the refugee called us all to be one, he knew that united in prayer and action, we work for the kingdom to come on Earth as it is in heaven, a home for all to be at home. This Refugee Sunday, this Ecumenical Sunday, let us strengthen our love in the actions of churches working together.     

In Easter faith,

The Rev'd William Roberts

Pastor and Priest

The boy Jesus on the flight to Egypt

The Palestinian boy alone in the Aida Refugee Camp

Carol-Anne Bjarnason

As you may have heard by now Carol-Anne passed away on Tuesday. She had been having a lovely time out and about with daughter Karen visiting from Holland. Carol-Anne died peacefully in her sleep with no suffering and a very happy heart. Karen was on her way to the airport when the news came. We keep them all in our prayers.

We have set next Tuesday May 17 at 3 pm for the memorial service in the church followed by an interment in our cemetery next to her departed husband Phil. 


Friday May 13, 7 - 9 pm: The St Mark’s Heritage Foundation invites its members and parishioners to an evening social in the parish hall. Three short videos will be shown, one in tribute to our 200th anniversary. Light refreshments served. If you plan to attend, please RSVP to Susan Dewhurst at 905.372.8375 or by May 11.

Saturday May 14: Launch in the Parish Hall of Graham Cotter's latest book The Topher All welcome at 3 pm.

Sunday May 15: Sunday services with The Rev Dr. Das Sydney, President of the Canadian Council of Churches, at 8 and 10:30 am.

Ecumenical service at 1 pm inviting all the Port Hope clergy and churches.

(All invited to the Rectory for bagels and smoked salmon between services. Let me know)



Click here for the full Easter 2022 Edition of Jacob's Ladder.

To celebrate 200 years of our historic church and as we begin our Third Century as the 'Sentinel on the Hill' our Archives Committee have been busy on many fronts. For a wikipedia look back click here.


Cantate Singers Rehearsing Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence, click here.

Pat Bryan's poetic tribute to George Clements "I Went to a Marvelous Party' click here

Mon May 16, 6pm - The Johnson Handbell Ringers, TCS, will present a public concert in the TCS Memorial Chapel. All are welcome. Masks may be worn, at your own discretion, but are not mandatory. Admission free.

Provincial Election resources: The Toronto Diocese with others have prepared a resource guide for parishes to engage with the issues and policies being debated in the run-up to the election on June 2. It is called 'Opening the Door to a Just Conversation' and you can find the link to it here.

King St Walking Tours will started May 7th and run until Saturday, June 4th. They start from the front of the Parish Hall at 2:00 pm and will last about 90 minutes. 

Sexual Misconduct Policy Training May 24 at 7 pm Parish Hall upstairs.

Annual Strawberry Luncheon: June 26 (info here)

St Mark's Anglican Church in the Diocese of Toronto
The Rt. Rev'd Riscylla Shaw, Area Bishop
The Rev'd Jesse Parker, Regional Dean
The Rev'd William Roberts M.Div, M.B.A Pastor and Priest-in-Charge
51 King St, Port Hope, Ontario L1A 2R6
Church office tel 905 885 4071 Rectory 905 885 8899

Find us on Facebook. Watch us on You Tube
If you do not want to receive the LION'S ROAR
click unsubscribe below
Facebook  Youtube