If you are new to our church, or are simply exploring our parish’s website, I’d love to get to know you. You can call 416-769-5686 or email me to make an appointment during the week or simply chat with me after a service on a Sunday morning.
Coming to a church for the first time can be difficult. It’s always hard to walk into a room of people we don’t know, doing things we may not understand. But I can assure you – all of us here at St. Olave’s are just regular people, and all of us were new once too! There is always a learning curve when we start something new, and church is no different. But just come, relax, enjoy, and you will soon feel like a “regular.” If there is anything we can do to make your transition into St. Olave’s easier, just ask.
St. Olave’s is a Christian community that wants to spread the good news of Jesus Christ in our community. We have a vibrant children’s ministry, an excellent education program, and we strive to make our services beautiful and meaningful.
We are Anglicans who use the 1962 Canadian Book of Common Prayer for our worship. This book stands in the Anglican tradition of liturgy going right back to the earliest days of the Reformation in England. We find the heritage, language, structure, calendar and overall rhythm of the BCP (as its commonly called) to be timelessly beautiful and edifying. As the preface of the BCP puts it, we think our liturgy helps us become more truly what we already are: “the People of God, that New Creation in Christ which finds its joy in adoration of the Creator and Redeemer of all.” We hope you will feel the same way about our services and traditions.
If God is nudging you to find community and to explore your faith, St. Olave’s might be the right place for you. We hope you will find yourself here!
Robert Mitchell, Rector
St. Olave’s upholds the Anglican Church of Canada’s mission:
“As a partner in the worldwide Anglican Communion and in the Universal Church, we proclaim and celebrate the Gospel of Jesus Christ in Worship and action.
“We value our heritage of biblical faith, reason, liturgy, tradition, bishops and synods, and the rich variety of our life in the community.
“We acknowledge that God is calling us to greater diversity of membership, wider participation in ministry and leadership, better stewardship in God’s creation and a stronger resolve in challenging attitudes and structures that cause injustice.
“Guided by the Holy Spirit, we commit ourselves to respond to this all in love and service and so more fully live the life of Christ.”
What is the Book of Common Prayer?
The Book of Common Prayer (BCP) is a small book that contains the scripture readings and words for all the services throughout the year. When you come to St. Olave’s or any Anglican Church, you will notice that common prayer (or praying together) is an important part of how Anglicans worship together. The rich tradition of set prayers from the BCP forms the backbone of our services at St. Olave’s. It was first compiled in England in 1549 but was revised several times up until 1662. In Canada, the BCP was last revised in 1962. While many Anglican Churches have since adopted the newer Book of Alternative Services (BAS) for many of their services, St. Olave’s is among a small group of parishes in Canada that continues to exclusively use the BCP, which has been called the “priceless possession of the Anglican Church.” Saying the same liturgical words that have been said over the centuries is, for many, part of the comforting ritual and tradition of our services.
To learn more about the Book of Common Prayer, visit the resource page of the Prayer Book Society of Canada’s website.
“If you’re in a parish that uses the prayer book very naturally—where people know what page you’re on, or rather, don’t need to look at the page anymore—you can experience it as a natural, flowing, perfectly harmonious way of worshipping,” says Dr. Jesse Billett, Trinity College, University of Toronto. Excerpted from “The Book of Common Prayer in Worship Today”, published by the Anglican Church of Canada.