Islington United Church

Church Council

Islington United Church Council

Church Council represents and reports to the congregation of Islington United Church.
The mandate of Church Council is to oversee the spiritual and development work of Islington United Church to carry out God’s mission in the world—balancing interests, selecting priorities, and seeing all activities as contributing to the whole.  With reflection and prayer, this includes developing long-range strategic plans, annual goals and plans, budgeting responsibility for the financial health of the church, and communicating clearly and often with the congregation.
Council is currently made up of a Chair and Vice-chair who are elected at the Annual Meeting for two-year terms, plus our Lead Minister and representatives from 10 ministries of the church. The current people elected to Church Council are listed below along with their contact information.
Council meets monthly—generally on the third Wednesday evening of the month.
Church Council meetings are open to the congregation, and any member of the congregation can ask to bring business before the Council by making a request to the Chair of Council.  If you wish to attend a Council meeting, you must notify the Chair of Council in advance.  This is because there are sometimes matters on the agenda (e.g., matters related to members of the staff) that must be discussed in confidence. 
We publish the minutes for our Council meeting in PDF format for the members of our congregation. Click here to see the minutes from recent Church Council meetings.

Current Members of Church Council
Wendy Sexsmith
Carole Bennett
Lead, Social Justice Network
Lay Representative, South West Presbytery/Regional Council 10
Reverend Maya Landell
Helen Delaney
Chair, Finance Committee  

Isla Grady
Chair, Hospitality Committee
Representative, United Church Women (UCW)
Jack Grady
Chair, Committee of Elders
Fred Leslie
Co-representative, Board of Trustees
Doug Peter
Co-representative, Board of Trustees
Grace Quimno
Interim Chair, Faith Formation Committee
Bob Shirer
Chair, Facilities Committee
Elsa van Vliet
Chair, Worship & Music Committee
Dorothea Vickers
Chair, Pastoral Care Committee
Janet Wells
Chair, Ministry & Personnel Committee
Church Committees
Ministry & Personnel Committee
The Ministry & Personnel Committee (known primarily as M&P) is a consultative and support team for the Church staff, as well as a liaison between the staff and members of the congregation.  They provide the staff with annual performance reviews, ensure appropriate working conditions and review requests for continuing education opportunities.
This team is also a liaison with various departments and working groups at the United Church’s regional and national offices.

If you have comments or questions about the work of this committee, please contact Janet Wells (, Chair of M&P.

Finance Committee/Treasurer
The Treasurer’s mandate is to prepare the annual budget with the aid of the other committee leaders and to ensure that the financial health of the Church is sustainable.  The Treasurer presents the audited/reviewed Financial Statements with comments at the Annual Meeting and works directly with the bookkeeper, Church staff and committees, financial auditors and other external service providers, as required.
The Treasurer ensures that the financial information provided each month is correct and current and publishes a summary in the Sunday bulletin to keep the congregation updated.  The Treasurer is assisted by the Finance Committee whose members provide analysis and administration, complete ad hoc projects, and provide valuable advice and expertise.   

The current Treasurer is Helen Delaney.  If you have any comments or questions about the financial information provided in the bulletins, or questions about how to go on PAR (Pre-authorized Remittance), she can be reached at  

Worship and Music Committee
The Worship and Music Committee’s mandate is to develop and support meaningful forms of worship, with the inclusion of music as an expression of worship.  This is a dedicated group of ‘leaders and doers’ who reflect, discuss, challenge, and support many aspects of our wonderful and varied worship services and worship-related events.
Our Worship and Music Committee includes the ministers, all the worship group leaders (Readers’ Guild, Communion Committee, Ushers, Greeters, Music), and some representatives of the congregation, ideally including a youth representative.

The current Chair of this committee is Elsa van Vliet.  If you have any comments or questions about the work of this committee, she can be reached at
Faith Formation Committee
The Faith Formation Committee identifies and responds to the needs for spiritual growth in the congregation for all ages and stages of life.  The group provides focus and guidance for programs to encourage our faith community to discover, explore and develop our spirituality in Christ’s name.  Working closely with staff, the committee provides support for the learning programs and the Church Library.

The current Interim Chair of this committee is Grace Quimno.  If you have comments or questions about the work of this committee, she can be reached at

Pastoral Care Committee
The Pastoral Care Committee directs and oversees the many programs coming under the ‘umbrella’ of pastoral care.  The programs provide care and compassion to those in need, extending nurture and comfort in times of sorrow and celebration.  Training and preparing members of the congregation to participate and provide pastoral care is part of several programs.
The various programs include:
Stephen Ministry       
Week of Guided Prayer
Life after Loss grief program
Prayer Shawl and Bear-Care ministry        
Prayer Link
Healing Prayer                  
Healing Pathway                                           
Islington Sings
Seniors’ Celebrations      
Blue Christmas                                               
Caring Friends

The current Chair of this committee is Dorothea Vickers.  If you have any comments or questions about the work of this committee, she can be reached at
Committee of Elders
The Committee of Elders serves the congregation by extending the reach of our Faith Family to members and newcomers through our visiting and welcoming teams.  We are part of the spiritual arm of Church Council, and, as such, bring information to the home of the congregation and information back to the church about the health and well-being of our members.

The current Chair of the committee is Jack Grady.  If you have any comments or questions about the work of the Committee of Elders he can be reached at
Social Justice & Outreach
At Islington United Church our practice of the Christian life extends well beyond our church doors by learning and taking action to help our local community, our city, our country, and our mission partners abroad.  Each of our Social Justice & Outreach ministries is a self-sufficient group making a difference in people’s lives by focusing on a specific aspect of social justice.  The network includes the Affirm Ministry, Interfaith Circle, Mabelle Food Program and Emergency Food Pantry, Mission & Service, Out of the Cold, Refugee Support Ministry, Right Relations Circle, and The GO Project.

The current lead of the Social Justice Network is Carole Bennett.  Contact her with your questions about the work of the various groups in the network.  She can be reached at

Spiritual Engagement Team/ Website Working Group
The Spiritual Engagement Team develops and implements a wide range of initiatives to attract new members to the Church, encourage Church visitors to consider membership and enhance existing Church programs to better meet the emergent spiritual needs of our congregation and mission field. The Website Working Group maintains and enhances our Church website and YouTube channel with additional content added to the site every week. 

If you have any comments or questions about Islington United Communications or the Islington United’s website please contact the church office at  

Hospitality Committee
The Hospitality Committee’s mandate is to provide a healthy, warm and friendly environment where all people are welcomed to Islington United.  We endeavour to accomplish our goal in very practical ways.  We clean and maintain all kitchens in the church, and we provide table fellowship opportunities.  We are honored to provide receptions during times of joy for special birthdays and anniversaries, and in times of loss we provide funeral receptions.
We work with our staff, Church Council, and community groups to support Christian fellowship within the walls of IUC and beyond.  In order to facilitate our mandate, we are blessed to be joined by our congregational team who generously share their service.

The current Chair of the committee is Isla Grady.  If you have any comments or questions about the work of the Hospitality Committee, she can be reached at
Facilities Committee
The Facilities team oversees the maintenance, care and security of our building, liaising with the custodial and property management staff of the church.  When major repairs and renovation are required, they request and evaluate quotations for the work and choose the companies to do the repairs or construction.
They meet with and support teams within the church who require changes or upgrades to the building.  They ensure safe working conditions for the custodial team.

The current Chair of this committee is Bob Shirer.  If you have any comments or questions about the work of this committee, he can be reached at
Board of Trustees
It is the responsibility of the trustees to hold and administer all property of the congregation for the use and benefit of the congregation as part of The United Church of Canada.  The trustees invest and administer special purpose funds on behalf of the congregation (e.g., Memorial Fund).  They also invest the funds of specific ministries and programs that are under the direction of others (e.g., Mabelle Food Program, Refugee Support Ministry).  The Board of Trustees works closely with Church Council and the Facilities Committee to maintain and protect the church building for the long-term as we carry out God’s mission in the world.

The chair of the Board of Trustees is Rev. Maya Landell.  Contact her with your questions about the work of the trustees.  She can be reached at

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