As we turn the clock on the calendar year, here is an update on what we have been up to for the past 9 months with the WCC.
As you know, due to Covid-19, we decided to discontinue meeting in person for the safety of all of our communities. This presented a unique situation, where we as Priesthood had to come up with a way to serve our Gods and communities. As a result, we set up classes and community get togethers using the Zoom platform.
To protect everyone’s safety, we have not posted the link to Zoom sessions online, but decided to create a mailing list for session announcements. Those wishing to attend were asked to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com be put on the notification list. The link is sent out to those who requested to be on the “Community” email list on the day of each event (class or get together) before noon. The notification is sent out with the addresses listed using BCC (Blind Copy) to protect the email addresses of attendees.
Here are some of the stats as at December 31, 2020:
Get togethers: 38
Total session: 92 (a total of 146 hours)
Community Get Togethers
The Community Get Togethers still continue on Wednesday nights at 7. They are a mix of social and subject specific nights. It has given community members a way to connect and feel supported during a trying time. There are many times that we do nothing but laugh at the situations we share. It is a good release.
We really don’t have a way to monitor our membership numbers at this time. With word going out that we offer classes and the social, our Temple Facebook Groups have been our primary point of contact. Since the middle of March 2020, we have seen an increase in membership:
Toronto Temple FB Group: 1093 has risen to 1391, an increase of 27.08%
Hamilton Temple FB Group: 704 has risen to 786, an increase of 11.81%
Windsor Temple FB Group: 84 has risen to 121, an increase of 44.05%
Steering Committee Activity
The Steering Committee’s of both Toronto and Hamilton (Windsor does not have one yet) have been a great support to keeping our communities involved. As happens at this time of year, we often think about providing some kind of outreach to the greater community, and our members did not disappoint.
Both Toronto and Hamilton canvassed their respective communities for donations of clothing (winter wear) and cash to help out those who are struggling.
Toronto – this is their first successful year at this endeavour. They raised cash and donations of winter wear and toiletries, producing 15 bags for women and 27 bags for men. There was an unexpected transportation issue in distributing the bags on their scheduled date, but don’t worry – your hard work is getting out to those who need it. Well done!!!!
Hamilton – this is Hamilton’s 10th year at this endeavour. They raised cash and donations of clothing/ toiletries, producing 50 bags (including 100 meals), and a carload of women’s/children’s clothing (delivered to Interval House Women’s Shelter). The bags were handed out on Yule as two of the SC drove around Hamilton to “hot spots”, with enough left over to donate to Hamilton Food Share and to Pantry for Paws (foodbank for pets). Awesome job!!!
Our communities have stepped up to support our WCC Outreach programs tremendously, especially during a time when so many are out of work or isolated.
Thank you to both Steering Committees and everyone who helped out! You guys rock!!!!
In November, the Hamilton Temple opened a Legacy Lending Library. Some of the books were donated by current, past and deceased members of the WCC. It is an honour and a privilege to have received these donations. The books are available for lending to the members for a membership fee. If you haven’t seen the posting, check the Hamilton FB Group for the link to all of the titles.
The Steering Committees are working on other fund raising ideas like Online Auctions, to help beef up the bank accounts so we will be in a good place when we have to pay rent again.
Please give the Steering Committees your support and assistance! They are working very hard to keep our community active and together during a very trying time.
Meeting in Person
Well……we don’t know when. Be assured that when the time comes (and hopefully with the availability of a vaccine it won’t be overly long), your Priesthood will get together to discuss the steps that we need to take for the “new normal”. There will be changes and we really won’t know what they are until we are closer to re-opening in-person gathering.
It has been a stressful year for everyone. The connections that you, the members, have developed is helping to keep our community together. We have grown and we would like to thank everyone for welcoming new members with open arms. A lot of new friendships have developed across the country, standing side by side in a common goal….worshiping and learning about the Gods.
We want to thank each of you for your wonderful support, for sharing your stories, experience and knowledge with us. Sharing in the way we can honour the Gods, the Elements and the Wheel of the Year has been a blessing for many through a difficult period
Let’s hope that 2021 brings better times, when we can all meet in-person to worship together and show our love of the Gods.
We wish you blessings of health, happiness and prosperity in the coming year.
Janice Cardie and Ross Carter