St. Luke’s Table has a new location for a Saturday program this winter in the parish hall of St. Barnabas Anglican Church in downtown Ottawa on Kent Street.
During the week, participants will continue to meet at the Bronson Centre, where the Anglican Community Ministry has re-established itself until its facility in the basement of St. Luke’s Anglican Church, which was damaged in a fire in the church in October, can be restored. But the Bronson Centre space was not available on the weekends, so those who depend on St. Luke’s for meals and important social connections and support had to spend their days on the weekends elsewhere.
The Rev. Canon Stewart Murray, incumbent of St. Barnabas, told Crosstalk that he had originally called the Rev. Dr. Canon P.J. Hobbs after the St. Luke’s fire to offer the space in the St. Barnabas Parish Hall. The Bronson Centre location was closer to St. Luke’s, but when St. Luke’s Table received a grant for an additional Out of the Cold program for Saturdays, Hobbs contacted him.
Rachel Robinson, the executive director for Belong Ottawa (the new name for the merged Anglican day programs Centre 454, St. Luke’s Table and the Well) said the team at St. Barnabas was very welcoming and that everyone was excited about the new program. It will offer breakfast and lunch as well as social recreation from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The program got started on Feb. 4, just in time before Ottawa’s daytime temperatures dropped to -30 C the following weekend.
St. Barnabas facilities volunteer Warren Halligan shows St. Luke’s Table program manager India Bedson (both centre) and the staff around the parish hall and kitchen.
Photo: Leigh Anne Williams