‘Thanks for the memories’

Published June 25, 2014

A number of years ago I watched a television tribute to Bob Hope. Many different people who had played a significant role in his life took the microphone and sang back to Bob a verse of his signature tune, “Thanks for the Memories.”

It was very moving for him as family friends and co-stars from his long and illustrious career serenaded him with that song, which will be forever associated with him.

I would like to take hold of the microphone and sing my own version of “Thanks for the Memories,” as my role as the interim managing editor of the Journal ends. I will continue my work for the primate, but in terms of the Journal, this is my final editorial.

The first verse of the song goes to my long-time colleague, but more importantly, my very close friend Sam Carriere. Sam, who is on leave due to a serious illness, was the person who believed in me enough to offer me the opportunity to be the interim managing editor. Sam, with his love of journalism and his vast experience and knowledge, has been wonderfully supportive. Over early morning cups of coffee, we would deliberate headlines, photos or a dozen other things related to the paper. Challenge he would, but his respect and trust in me and my judgment is something for which I will be forever grateful.

The second verse goes to the Journal staff. I have been blessed to work with an incredibly gifted group of people-Saskia Rowley, Janet Thomas, Marites (Tess) Sison and Leigh Anne Williams, with additional help from Diana Swift. Words alone cannot convey to you how hard they work, their dedication to the tasks, their patience, their functioning as a team, their abiding friendship and their gifts of creativity in layout, editing and journalism.

I leave on a high note-on page 13 you will see an article about the Journal having receiving 26 awards, including two top awards in the category of general excellence for national or international newspaper, from two religious press associations in North America, continuing the newspaper’s tradition of excellence. It is very gratifying for me as the editor to see the staff continue to be acknowledged in this way by peers and professional communicators.

The third and final verse goes to you, the readers and supporters of the Journal. A priest comes to a parish and works, prays, plays and worships with his or her people. In each parish that I was privileged to serve in, I got to know the parishioners and felt a real sense of loss when I would leave. In much the same way, I feel that I have come to know you and be reacquainted with former friends and parishioners. I feel that familiar sense of loss now and will deeply miss your emails, cards and letters. Many of these are very precious, as they are written by hand in a script that reminds me of the cherished notes I have in my possession from my late grandmother, who shared her love for me through writing letters.

You have shared thoughts, offered words of hope, argued and debated, and criticized-all to the good. The Journal’s mandate is not to be the official voice of the Anglican church but a place of diversity that needs to be independent and reflect the variety of Anglican opinions across this country and within the Anglican Communion.

Your generous financial support says how much you believe in a newspaper that is delivered to your home for a remarkable 32 cents each month (taking into account all the costs, such as staff, printing, mailing-everything) and a website that shares fresh news many times each week. The Journal’s revenue, including among other things advertising, grants and especially your donations, was 12.5 per cent of the national budget-the second-highest total after diocesan contributions. I have always interpreted your support as your belief that the Journal is meeting many needs and connecting you with other Anglicans and the church. Thank you for allowing us to come into your home each month.

My story here is finished, but to Sam, to the staff and to you, I say, “Thanks for the memories.”





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