“A Normal Sunday Service”

Where there are Anglicans gathered for a special occasion, there's bound to be food.
By on March 1, 2024

“That’s all I wanted it to be: an ordinary Sunday service.” That’s how The Rev’d Matt Koovisk described his last Sunday service at St. Mary’s, Virden. It took place on Sunday, January 14, 2024, seven years to the day of his arrival in the parish. 

Fr. Matt left the Tri-Valley Parish in the Diocese of Brandon at the end of the following week. He came to the parish in early 2017, shortly after Bishop William Cliff was consecrated in March, 2016. His appointment and subsequent ordinations was one of the first appoinments made by Bishop William. His response to Fr. Matt’s leaving was that he was sorry to see him go, but glad he had found the right place to move on. 

At Fr. Matt’s last service, congregants from Reston and Melita joined those from Virden to see him off. His last sermon before them acknowledged that in leaving there was both pain and joy. 

He wanted an ordinary service, but before he was able to process during the last hymn, the parish honoured him with a tribute gift, a mug with the church on it, as well as a purse. Anyone who was close enough to see his face knew his eyes teared up. Then, during the recessional, he was asked to stop midway down the aisle. Together, everyone there raised their hands in thanks and blessing. 

As several of his parishioners said during the gathering afterwards, “he’ll be hard to replace”. Those who have worked with him on Diocesan committees, including the Diocesan Executive Committee, would agree. He prayed hard; he worked hard. 


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