This week we bid farewell to Jeff and Maureen Jones as they prepare to take up residence in Milton, Ontario. Jeff has taken a job with RBC in Hamilton, and Maureen will be working as a fitness trainer while continuing to pursue voice acting work in Toronto.
The loss we feel cannot be overstated. The Joneses have contributed so much to St. Stephen’s over the years—from the days when Simon and Hugh were servers, to Maureen’s stunning readings, especially during Christmas and Holy Week, to Jeff’s inspirational musical leadership as organist and choir director. The family embodied the commitment and participation upon which church membership is based.
Because so much of their faithful efforts were expressed in our worship, there are lessons to be learned from the Jones family. Simon and Hugh, as servers, found a way to remain connected to the church through their teen years when social pressure went in the opposite direction. Maureen’s expressive readings reminded us that the Bible is a living document that can spring to life in our midst when read with serious intention. And Jeff’s leadership of our musical program engaged us deeply and emotively in our worship themes while never allowing us to forget that, ultimately, Christian fellowship is fun.
Given the solemnity of Remembrance Day, we will not focus on our farewells this Sunday. Rather, we will wait until Jeff and Maureen return for the Carol Service, on December 16, to express our love and appreciation for this remarkable family.