News & Events

Please note that, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, although in-person worship services have resumed, most other meetings and activities that take place at the church are suspended. We will advise as soon as there is a change. Note that there are several on-line and conference call activities shown in the paragraphs below. 

Tuesday Noontime Bible Study

“We Have Questions – Jesus Has Questions”

with Rev. Dr. Bailey

Over this season of Pandemic so many questions have been provoked in us:

“How did this happen?”   “When will it be over?”
“What inequities were exposed by the Pandemic?”

   “What will the new “normal” look like?”

   “How has this season impacted our faith?”

   “What really matters?”    “Who has been most affected?”

   “Why did this happen?”

   “What will change in how we do ‘church’?”…

Jesus asks a lot of questions in the Gospels.

By some accounts, Jesus asks 307 questions.

   “What is your name?”    “Why are you bothering this woman?”

   “Why do you call me good?”

   “Will you really lay down your life for me?”

   “Friends, have you any fish?”    “Why question me?”…

We began last week to wrestle with some of Jesus’ questions and our questions. We continue to trust we are being accompanied by God’s Spirit and each other. This week’s Question from Jesus is: “What do you want me to do for you?”  (Mk. 10:51)

Dates:  Tuesdays @ noon – 1:15 pm      Sept. 14 – Nov. 16


Baptismal Seminar:

Dr. Bailey will be hosting a virtual baptismal preparation seminar on October 6 at 7 pm. This is required for anyone seeking to be baptized, and those bringing their children to be baptized. Please contact JoAnne, our office manager (, to register and to receive the zoom link.

We are planning for baptisms on October 10 – Thanksgiving Sunday.

The Menda Family

We were so excited to have some of the congregation meet the Menda family at the outdoor worship service in the Parkdale Park. They continue to reside in communal transitional housing provided by Catholic Immigration Services. They are still working with the City and housing workers on finding them permanent housing, but this could take some time. They are making progress in acquiring Health and S.I.N cards. As well, the children are now registered for school and the mother, Celestine, is attending English classes.

We are grateful to those who have donated household items. We have quite a number of items now. Hence, for the time being we are suspending collecting general items, until we have a better idea of what their post-shelter accommodation will be, as well as what furnishings may be forthcoming from local furniture banks.

They are however, in need of winter-type clothing, such as sweaters, boots and shoes. Specifically, for the women/girls – clothing sizes medium (M) to XXL and everything between, shoe sizes 8 US to 11 US. Two men: sizes 32” for pants and (L) large tops: shoes 9 US and 10.5 US. One man: size 29” for pants and (M) medium tops; shoes 10 US. If you are able to help with any of these please contact JoAnne in the office (613) 728-8656. Let us continue to hold the family in our prayers.                  



OCTOBER 29, 2021

This is a ZOOM presentation. Please register your attendance by e-mailing or phoning Jo-Anne (613-728-8656) in the office. She will send you the Zoom link closer to the Friday presentation. If you had registered for the first meeting held on Friday Sept. 24, you are registered for the entire series.

Friday, October 29, 7:00 – 8:00 PM: Please mark your calendar for the October 29th presentation when Dr. Keith Hartshorn-Walton, our new Music & Worship Arts Director and his wife Melanie Hartshorn-Walton will tell us about their journey to this glorious life of music.

Resumption of In-Person Worship & Activities

COVID related announcement:  As we prepare for in-person activities within the church facility, we will be adopting the following policy: All persons participating in activities inside the church who are eligible to receive a vaccination will be required to either attest to their having received a double vaccination greater than two weeks prior, show a letter from a physician stating that they cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons, or provide evidence of a negative rapid or PCR COVID test result no older than 72 hours. Mask wearing and social distancing protocols will continue to be followed.

We will revisit this policy as necessary in the weeks and months ahead, informed by our public health leaders. 

If you are eligible for vaccination but have been unable to receive one due to transportation issues, mobility challenges, etc., please contact the church office and we will do our best to assist you.


Perhaps you just retired and are looking for ways to express the love of God in practical a way. Maybe you have been thinking that you would like to be more active in serving others but do not know how, or you feel you have been gifted or called to serve God through the ministry of caring for others.

Hear the good news: Ottawa Pastoral Care Training Program is offering a basic training. It will help you to discern your way, to refresh your knowledge, or to enter a new world of possibilities and creativity for service… or if you want to become part of our Pastoral Care Team.

When: September 20 to November 22 (excluding Thanksgiving Monday)

How: 18 hours on Zoom. Two hours per week

Times: two options available 1-3 pm or 7-9 pm.

Special word of encouragement to Parkdale’s men to join us.


We have an ongoing support group for Caregivers. You are welcome to join, for info please contact Rev. Alcris

Here are some amazing resources:

This is an important opportunity for caregivers of a loved one to get practical knowledge, resources and support. Caregivers Count! The 11th Annual Conference for Families and Friends Caring for a Loved One is presenting a series of online sessions at 10 am to noon.

The remaining session is:
      * Oct 2nd – Adult Day Care Reimagined

To register, use this link:

LGBTQ+ Small Group Discernment in the Fall

Session Four in October will explore what this means from a theological perspective: How do we apply the biblical teachings? How does our biblical interpretation inform our ministry today?

Since this discussion will be led by the ministry team we’ll deviate from the small group format (so that they don’t need to repeat the session ten times!).

Session Four will be Tuesday, October 12 from 7pm to 9pm and Saturday, October 16 from 10am to noon. Please register with the church office.

– Session Five in November will be a single in-person Saturday morning get together (COVID Guidelines permitting) that will include some prepared personal story telling and sharing.

Anyone in the Parkdale United Church community is welcome to join these next two sessions.

Finally, Session Six in January will return to our original small groups, to give each group the opportunity to synthesize the good work we’ve done together and do some envisioning of where we may go from here.

Please continue to keep this journey prayerfully in your heart as we seek God’s generous guidance for our congregation.

Rob Hilkes,

Chair of Parkdale United Church Council


Parkdale United Church is offering its members an opportunity to order the 2022 Canadian Church Calendar. If you are interested in ordering a calendar or two, please contact Beth Gutsell at 613-729-8228 or by e-mail at  no later than October 15, 2021. Please indicate the number of calendars you would like to order and your contact information. We are giving other United Church congregations and UCW groups in the Ottawa area an opportunity to place orders, and we hope to place a large bulk order which should bring the cost of the calendars down. With a bulk order of 135 calendars last year, the unit price for calendars was $6.00. When the order is received from UCRD, those who have ordered calendars will be contacted about pickup information, the cost and method of payment.

VOLUNTEERS TO PLAY THE SUNDAY SERVICE ON THE PHONE for those with no internet service.

Please contact Rev. Alcris if you would like to do it every few weeks, it is an easy and meaningful way to serve!


(for more information please contact Rev. Alcris or leave a message at ext 224)


Sunday school will continue online every Sunday during the Month of September. Children are welcome to attend the worship Service on Sundays with their family. There will be no Sunday School during the service.

Our theme for September:

Season Of Creation:

A Home for All – Renewing the OIKOS of God.

We will be celebrating God’s Creation by focusing on Bible stories that celebrate water, plants, food and animals. We hope also to draw the children’s attention to climate change issues and help them find ways to care for God’s good creation and be good stewards of it. We will have opportunities to focus on hearing and reflecting on the story with open-ended questions, creating meaningful art, sharing in an interactive activity based on the story, and providing an opportunity to share God’s love.

This Sunday, we will look at Genesis 1: 26-30, and Psalm 8. And discover our place in the world as Stewards of creation.

Senior and Junior Youth groups have won an outdoors Pizza party for Thanksgiving on Oct. 9 at 4:00 PM. Please come hungry! (In the case of inclement weather an email will be sent to inform you of the change).

Junior Youth group (Grades 5-8) – Every other Wednesday. Next meeting Oct. 6 @ 6:00 PM. 

Senior Youth group (Grades 9-12) – Every other Sunday. Next meeting is Oct. 3 @ 6:00 PM.

IGNITE group every other Thursday – Next meeting is online on Oct. 7 @7:00PM.

We will also gather for an outdoor Lunch in the Parkdale garden on Oct. 2 at noon. Bring your lawn chair and a friend. Let Huda know if you are planning to come by Oct. 1st. (In the case of inclement weather an email will be sent to inform you of the change).

They are simple phrases. They sound Christian—like something you might find in the Bible. We’ve all heard these words. Maybe we’ve said them. They capture some element of truth, yet they miss the point in important ways. This fall we will embark on a journey through the Bible by searching for the whole truth by comparing common Christian clichés to the message and ministry of Jesus. Some clichés include:

Everything happens for a reason.

God helps those who help themselves.

God won’t give you more than you can handle.

God said it, I believe it, that settles it.

Love the sinner, hate the sin.

All young adults are welcome!

Parkdale Christian Yoga will resume EVERY OTHER Tuesday.

Next gathering is Oct.5 at 7:00-7:30 PM.

Christian Yoga is an online program for all ages. It is a time for you to connect with your body, mind and spirit, with yourself and with God through yoga movements and meditation on scripture passages. The movements and stretches can be modified to accommodate your body and there will be time for meditation. Dress code is whatever feels comfortable for you. A yoga mat or blanket to place on the floor would be helpful. The link to join is emailed to the congregation on Tuesday mornings.  For more information, please email Huda.

Experiences Canada is reopening applications for their virtual Youth Leadership Forum on Reconciliation, bringing together Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth from across the country to develop reconciliation projects that they can lead in their own communities. 


Applications are now open to youth aged 14 – 25!

Deadline for registration is Oct. 3rd.

For more information, please contact Huda:

For registration please visit:

Somerset West Community Health Centre

has plenty of Fall Resources for young families, children and youth. Please check the weekly email sent from Parkdale to the young families for further information on free community programs.

UN Climate Change Conference 2021 – Ecumenical Delegation

October 31 – November 12, 2021 | Ecumenical | one week or both

For the Love of Creation and the The United Church of Canada are seeking delegates for their United Nations Climate Change COP 26 Ecumenical Delegation. Participation will be virtual.

COP26 is the latest Conference of the Parties (COP), the group of nations that forged the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1992, which commits them to act together to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations “at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic (human induced) interference with the climate system.”

The four COP26 goals set by the host countries UK and Italy are: a steep change in commitments to emissions reduction; strengthening adaptation to climate change impacts; getting finance flowing for climate action; and, enhancing international collaboration, including for the COP26 campaigns on energy transition, clean road transport and nature. The ecumenical delegation will attend as observers under the accreditation of The United Church of Canada.

For more information please get in touch with Huda soon.



Your PRAYER REQUESTS are always welcome. Please send them to Rev. Alcris at

    • THE PRAYER GROUP will meet Wednesday, September 29 at 10am.
    • CANCER PRAYER GROUP meets on Fridays at 3:30 pm.

 SUNDAY WORSHIP SERVICES AVAILABLE ON THE PHONE FOR THOSE WITH NO  INTERNET – think of someone who would like to join the service this way and invite them…SPREAD THE WORD… Every Sunday morning at 10:30 am. Dial, this number 343 882 1920 and then enter 343 882 6443 plus #. They can listen to the service, no need to speak. (If you need more info, contact Alcris)


EMOTIONAL IMPACT OF COVID-19. Let us continue caring for one another. “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing” (1 Thessalonians 5:11).  

PRAYER SHAWLS. If you have someone who is ill or suffering the impact of COVID, and you would like to give a shawl from the congregation, please speak with Rev. Alcris

PRAYER BUDDY. If you would like to join someone for prayer on a regular basis, we would be delighted to find a prayer buddy for you. You two will decide how and when to pray. Let Rev. Alcris know.

MEALS. There are always opportunities to cook a fresh meal for someone else going through a difficult time. If you would like to be in our list of Care Kitchens cooks, please email us.

CARING KITCHENS. If you know of someone from the congregation that would be encouraged or supported with a meal, please let us know.

PARKDALE BUDDIES. In this time of social isolation it is so important to have someone to check with on a regular basis. If you would like to have a buddy, let Alcris know. 

EARS ARE OPEN. It is normal that this new reality starts to impact our mental/emotional health. If you are feeling troubled, need to talk with someone, or in need of prayers, we are here for you. Please send Alcris an email or call the office for us to call you right back. We can meet on Skype, Zoom, and phone or have an email chat. You are not alone; we are all together in this!

The Messenger

Monthly Email Newsletter


429 Parkdale Ave
Ottawa, ON K1Y 1H3
Phone: (613) 728-8656