Rosedale Presbyterian Church (416) 921-1931

Rosedale Presbyterian Church 129 Mount Pleasant Road
(at South Drive) Toronto


Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
by Van Beard

This Sunday (January 20), inspired in part by this weekend’s observance in the US of Martin Luther King Day, the Reverend Wes Denyer will be preaching a sermon entitled, "Free at Last." In the United States this is the weekend set aside to celebrate the life and courage of Martin Luther King, Jr. His legacy reminds us of humanity’s struggle for dignity and freedom. Freedom can be lost in two different ways. We can become subject to the tyranny of those who have great power over us, or we can lose our freedom through our devotion to material things, addictive substances or other “lesser gods.” Over the centuries, Christianity has offered hope and courage, both to those who are oppressed by others, and those who have lost their freedom through their own carelessness. In this Sunday’s sermon, we reflect on the human desire to be free.

The Order of Service has been posted here.

After our regular service of worship, at the request of a member of this church, and with the blessing of the Session of Rosedale, we’ll be holding a special service of anointing with oil for healing.

We all need healing … so if you feel this would be valuable to you, I invite you to join us for this service. Some of us may choose to accept this practice, and others may not find it helpful.

If you do come, you may choose to simply sit in your pew and participate with your worship and your prayers. You don’t have to say or do anything … Or you may choose to receive this ancient Christian ritual of anointing with oil.

Whatever you choose, whatever happens, whatever you experience, it will be a time of worship … a time to experience the presence of God in your life … a time to rest in the loving arms of God, who knows and loves you and me, better than we know ourselves, and desires us to live into the fullness of life promised to us in the life, death and resurrection of Christ.

If you would like to learn more about this, you may listed to Wes' sermon on "Anointing with Oil for Healing" which was preached last Sunday (click here).

This Sunday's Music

PRELUDE: Prelude & Fugue #1 in G minor – Clara Wieck (Schumann)

ANTHEM: He, watching over Israel - F. Mendelssohn

OFFERTORY ANTHEM: Come Healing - words & music by Leonard Cohen

CHORAL AMEN: The Rosedale Amen– T. Randle

POSTLUDE: Prelude & Fugue #3 in D minor - Clara Wieck (Schumann)

Music Notes
by Christopher Dawes, Music Director

The theme of freedom weaves itself throughout our service today from a variety of angles, inspired in part by this weekend’s observance in the US of Martin Luther King Day, but no less through the promise of healing and liberation we receive in relationship with Jesus Christ — the promise that inspired the ancient Christian ritual of laying on hands and anointing with oil we observe after service

To begin (and end) with, today’s Prelude and Postlude are little-known and rarely heard organ compositions of one of the mid-Romantic era’s most influential musicians, Clara Wieck (Schumann). Clara’s devoted marriage to Robert Schumann even unto his illness, madness and eventual death in an asylum, and her being main breadwinner and caregiver for their eight children (and several grandchildren upon the heartbreaking death of four of her own children) is inspiring in the extreme, but it shares the stage, in an era when women were rarely enabled as recital pianists, with her Europe-wide fame as a concert artist, and her complete remaking of the culture and tradition of the piano recital, establishing the works of Robert and their protegé, Johannes Brahms, originating and making memorisation virtually compulsory, and sublimating technique to the wishes of the composer, rather than the performer.

Mendelssohn’s scriptural assurance to the prophet Elijah in the oratorio of the same name hints at the freedom that comes from God’s care, oversight and intervention; Leonard Cohen’s late song is a thoroughly postmodern but deeply reverent masterpiece of music and poetry, entreating those imprisoned by pain, loss, addiction - perhaps anything at all - to seek the springs of divine healing.

While all of our hymns today, especially #725 an Apartheid-era traditional song from South Africa, hint at God’s justice and the hope we may derive therefrom, the last word is given to a paraphrase of the Surge Illuminare — the words of Isaiah predating by centuries the similar words Jesus would speak to numerous of the sick, the imprisoned and the hopeless upon bestowing God’s gift of freedom from adversity, from suffering and despair.


Evangel Hall Community Dinner will be served by Rosedale Presbyterian Church volunteers on Sunday evening January 20 at 5:30 pm. We are still in need of the following:
• 2 more people to make the beef stew at home and deliver it to the church by Friday January 18, or already thawed at the Sunday service on January 20th.
• 14 pies baked or bought.
• 3 more people to help prepare the remaining ingredients (potatoes, carrots and salad) at the hall from 3:30 pm onward on January 20.
• 10 more people to help serve the meal from 5-7pm
The Mission Team appreciates your support for this outreach. Questions? Contact Annemiek Miller 647 230 6318, annemiekmariamiller@

The Globe and Faith considering current events in the light of our Christian faith will meet on Wednesday, January 23rd at 10:30 am. Please feel welcome to participate in this group when you’re available, even if you’re unable to attend regularly. For more information, please contact Wes Denyer who will be facilitating this conversation each week.

The Book Club will be meeting on Wednesday, January 23rd at 12:30. The book choice is Becoming Mrs. Lewis: The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis by Patti Callahan. This novel is based on the letters and writings of Joy Davidman, an American writer and poet, and of the British Christian thinker, C.S. Lewis whom she befriended and then married. At our last meeting there was also an informal discussion of other books which the Book Club members have enjoyed. These recommendations will form the basis of our book choices in the future, so please keep a list of your favourite reads to consider at the January meeting. Please note the earlier meeting time, 12:30 to follow the Wednesday Globe and Faith session.

The Bridge and Scrabble Group will meet on Thursday, January 24th. This is a casual, friendly group which welcomes newcomers. Tea and coffee will be served at 12:30 pm. Play begins at 1:00 pm and ends at 3:15 pm. Please feel welcome to participate in this group when you’re available, even if you’re unable to attend regularly.

Slow Down and Notice the Divine in All Things Wednesday January 30th at Crieff Hills Retreat Centre, one hour west of Toronto. 9:30am to 4pm. Cost: $70 includes lunch (bring a friend and you each pay $65). Overnight accommodation also available. This one day retreat is led by the staff of Ontario Jubilee, who also offer a one year program in spiritual growth at Crieff Hills and a two year program in spiritual direction. Call to register 1-800-884-1525 or email

Annual Congregational Meeting Report Submissions for the 2018 Annual Report are due by the end of January. The Annual Meeting will be held on Sunday, March 3rd, following the regular Service of Worship. Please deliver your write-ups to Ijeoma Ross at Thank-you for your contribution.

The Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus, youth chorus for the COC, will be presenting a new fully staged production of congregation member John Greer’s One-Act Opera The Snow Queen March 1-3 at the Harbourfront Centre Theatre. This 1996 work is based on the well-known Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale and performances will feature the CCOC’s large amalgamated chorus, soloists and puppets all accompanied by a sixpiece chamber orchestra. Tickets can be ordered from the HCT Box Office at (416) 973-4000.

The Anglican Foundation is publishing Children’s Prayers with Hope Bear to coincide with its 60th anniversary. This book features 24 prayers for liturgical seasons, holidays, and special moment in a child’s life (starting school, moving home, loss of a loved one), with text by Judy Rois and  beautiful images by Canadian illustrator and watercolorist Michele Nidenoff. Perfect for children from preschool up to age 12. Available here. $15 each. Judy Rois is the wife of our minister, the Rev. Wes Denyer.  Michele Nidenoff ( is a member of our congregation.