Rector: The Reverend Susan Oliver
The Rev. Susan Oliver has lived on Toronto’s Lakeshore, the university town of Sackville, New Brunswick, and the tiny hamlet of Fort McPherson, NWT. In each of these places she has found ways to minister the Good News, and learned of the rich expanse of Christian ministry.
Growing up in St. Margaret’s parish, New Toronto, Sue learned about the ministry of food and fellowship among the urban poor as she helped her father (who was a chef at Toronto’s Royal York) prepare food for, and spend time with, neighbourhood people.
After graduating from the Etobicoke School of the Arts, Sue set out for the Maritimes. While earning an Honour’s Degree in Religious Studies she was involved in campus ministry as a student leader and President of Mount Allison Christian Fellowship. Here she learned about the ministry of worship and witness in a secular setting. She also walked the Tantramar Marshes and spent a fulfilling four years enjoying a hospitality one can only find in the Maritimes.
Returning to Toronto, Sue enrolled in the Masters of Divinity program at Wycliffe College at the University of Toronto. While there she also worked as a Youth and Family minister at All Saints’ Kingsway Anglican Church where she pioneered a ministry to children and youth in the Kingsway neighbourhood. During the five years she spent at All Saints’, Sue learned about ministry to young people, how to make a swimming pool full of popcorn into a teachable moment, and how to creatively provide meaningful worship for all ages in a thriving west Toronto parish.
While at seminary, Sue was captured by a vision for ministry to First Nations people. Upon graduation she left for the Arctic. As Rector of St. Matthew’s Fort McPherson NT, Sue learned about the ministry of presence in places of pain and often despair. She also learned to integrate herself into a community, hosting a radio show, giving cooking lessons, and fostering children.
Sue has brought these experiences and learnings to Edmonton. From 2009 she served as Anglican Educational Chaplain at the University of Alberta. A year later she added Rector of St. George’s, Windsor Park to her responsibilities. Her ministries have been characterized by food and fellowship, worship and witness, and presence in pain. She has sought to nurture and grow those gifts in others, whether on campus or in the parish.
Shortly after arriving in Edmonton, Sue met and married her beloved, Stephen Martin, who is a theologian and professor at King’s University. In 2013 they were blessed with a six-year-old daughter named Amelia and the following Christmas they received the gift of Simon!
Coming to Christ Church in 2015, Sue is excited to continue to grow and express her gifts here, to integrate herself into the community, and to facilitate the giftedness of others.
Associate Priest: The Reverend Nick Trussell
Trusting that the God who made you, knows and loves you through the very Spirit and Son of God is the faith that has lead Rev. Nick Trussell to ministry in the Anglican Church. He is passionate about seeing that faith shape our worship, work, communities and every part of our whole lives.
Rev. Nick is happy that Christ Church is a faith community for his whole family, welcoming his wife Stephanie and daughter Everly.
Rev. Nick is excited to be part of God’s mission at Christ Church.
Parish Deacon: The Reverend Arlene Young
Hello, I’m Arlene Young, Parish Deacon at Christ Church. What is a Deacon? The deacon’s role is one of service to the needs of people within the parish, church, and secular society. A major part of that role is around social justice, specifically, to bring the concerns of the secular world to the attention of the church. I lead the parish’s Social Justice Action Team which sponsors many activities throughout the year including monthly community dinners for homeless and lonely people. Deacons’ work can be summarized as modeling the caring, healing, and teaching of Jesus within the church and community. Deacons are usually employed outside of the church and bring the knowledge, skills, and concerns from their employment to their church work. I retired several years ago from full-time employment as a university counsellor and teacher. I continue to work as a part-time tutor at Athabasca University in Women’s Studies.
Hi! I’m Keith Denman, Honourary Assistant Priest at Christ Church. My vocation as a priest has played itself out as a part-time interim priest in a variety of parishes. In between “gigs” as an interim I hang out at Christ Church. When I am not working as priest, I enjoy my day-job in the environmental policy world. This is not a typical pattern for Anglican priests, but it is not unheard of and it may be an increasingly common one as churches try to adapt to a world in which there seems to be fewer and fewer Anglicans. Christ Church has been a welcoming and enjoyable place to hang out, and I look forward to being part of the ongoing adventures of the parish.