In solidarity with our neighbours

This statement of support for the residents of Centretown during this difficult time of protest was jointly written by The Rev. Jim Pot of Knox Presbyterian Church and The Rev. Dr. Karen Dimock of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian, and endorsed by St. Barnabas and many other Centretown churches.

In Solidarity with our Neighbours

As Christian Clergy in downtown Ottawa, we write in solidarity and care for residents, retailers, restaurant owners, and all who work in the city centre during the ongoing protests and occupation. We see and know the anxiety and distress that this causes, particularly to the most vulnerable among us.

Our faith tradition calls us to seek the welfare of the city in which we live. It pains us to see how the chaotic, unruly and unlawful behaviors, and hateful language, signs and symbols hurt our community. Like many of you, we have experienced the intimidation used by protesters to target our city’s citizens. We lament how this tears at our social fabric and we call on all levels of government to continue to work for a peaceful end to the protest.

The present protest shocks us all. We know the civility, respect and dignity within the DNA of our neighbourhoods. Because you live and work in the Nation’s Capital, you have seen many protests, but this situation has become untenable.

While the language of individual rights permeates much of what we are seeing, we would recall you to the identity we have as a community and the care we are called to offer each other, body, mind and soul. None of us are in this alone. Along with other faith traditions and community support, we are also here for you. Our resilience can come from the hope we find in mutual encouragement, the recognition of our neighbours and their needs, and the generous flow of compassion. From our love of this city, our pain and sorrow, and even our outrage, will come resolve to carry us through this present darkness.

In hope and solidarity,

Clergy of Downtown Ottawa Christian Churches 

  • The Very Reverend Beth Bretzlaff, Rector of Christ Church Cathedral, 414 Sparks Street
  • The Reverend Teresa Burnett-Cole, Glebe-St. James United Church, 650 Lyon Street South
  • The Rev. Dr. Karen Dimock, St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, 82 Kent Street
  • Rev Demanya Kofi Akoussah, Eglise unie St-Marc, 142 Lewis Street
  • The Rev. Dr. Caroline Ducros, St. Albans Anglican Church, 454 King Edward Avenue
  • The Rev. Simone Hurkmans, St. Albans Anglican Church, 454 King Edward Avenue
  • Rev. S.K. Moore, Southminster United Church, 15 Aylmer Avenue
  • Reverend Canon Hilary Murray, Chaplain, Cornerstone Housing for Women, 314 Booth Street
  • The Rev. Canon Stewart Murray, Church of St. Barnabas Apostle and Martyr, 70 James Street
  • Rev. John C. Perkin, Minister, First Baptist Church, 140 Laurier Avenue West
  • The Rev. Jim Pot, Knox Presbyterian Church, 120 Lisgar Street
  • The Reverend Canon Doug Richards, Christ Church Cathedral, 414 Sparks Street
  • The Reverend Victoria Scott, St. Luke’s Anglican Church, 760 Somerset Street West
  • The Rev. Gary van der Meer, St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church, 154 Somerset Street West
  • The Rev Rhonda Waters, Church of the Ascension, 253 Echo Drive
  • Rev. Paul Wu, Minister, St. Giles Presbyterian Church, 181 First Avenue
  • Rev. David White, Centretown United Church, 507 Bank Street
  • The Venerable Mark Whittall, Archdeacon Ottawa Centre, Anglican Diocese of Ottawa