Heather was Ordained to the Christian Ministry on April 14th, 2008.
Introductory remarks by our Chief Governing Official, Rev McKibbon:
“Heather Star Williams has been an Ordained Minister with our church since 2008. She is the gem in our crown, being present for others, and sharing in worship on multitudes of occasions. For her history with us, just read her moving closing remarks below. Caution, you will hear a prophet speaking so listen with your heart…”
“I believe that worship is not just a Sunday morning one-hour service in a specific building although I am in such a building most Sundays as part of the worship team. I create and lead the prayers of the people during that time of public worship.
I do conduct Sunday worship many other times of the year, when invited by other congregations across the Province.
I have conducted 15 funerals, some in churches, others in funeral homes, on a fishing boat at the bell buoy as ashes were dispersed to the ocean, the Legion Hall and some at the graveside.
The most heart-wrenching death to me was the 23-year-old woman who had hanged herself after just 3 weeks away at university and her parents, who were here from Russia, had no family or faith group to call on. With God’s help, I did all that I could for these parents and I still stay in touch with them to this day.
Worship is most certainly in that gathering but it is also in the weddings and funerals I conduct.
I have been overwhelmed by the number of times individuals have spoken to me of how my wedding service was a blessing (sacred) to them, and how often that wedding service has led people to contact me for pastoral care many months after that event.”
I participate in Bible study group every Sunday evening, 6-7 pm, and assume leadership any time the scheduled leader is not available.
- Atlantic School of Theology – Diploma Pastoral Care
- Salvation Army – Four-day Seminar on Evangelism
- Salvation Army – Basic Counselling
Personal Growth and Study
- Reading something all the time, most frequently those that tell the tale of personal faith journeys.
- Personal program of devotions while improving musical abilities through playing my accordion using old time gospel songs and hymns.
- Excited about my enrollment in a course taking place in November, Home Funeral Practicum
Knitting, crocheting, carving soapstone and wood, cooking, gardening, scouring yard sales and thrift shops looking for items I can repair or restore.
Salvation Army Red Shield, Christmas Kettles & Supper program, Cancer Society, Heart & Stroke. Women’s Inter-Church Council, Charity Auctions, Dragon Boat Races for IWK. Royal Canadian Legion, Bluenose Marathon – Youth Run volunteer route marshal.
Pastoral Care Activities
My pastoral care activities over the last few years have been to those who have reached out to me because of the weddings I have officiated, or, from the two congregations at which I lead prayers and sometimes lead worship, or, from those who have attended funerals I have conducted, or through the bible study group where I have part-time leadership, and, of course, on the occasions that it seems that God has put me in the path of someone who needs pastoral care.
For example, I am presently pastorally involved with an 84 year old woman with health problems and no family in this country. I am also helping an 87 year old woman in failing health and so very scared of change.
End of Life Ministry
As well as having conducted 15 funerals, I find my Ministry is becoming increasingly centred on those facing the end of life.
I have provided pastoral care to a number of fine individuals and their loved ones as they deal with terminal illness and the ‘journey’ to the end. The relationships formed and the events of the journey have been a blessing to me and, more and more, I feel that I am called to this specific ministry.
I am also an approved Spiritual Care Visitor for the Halifax Hospital.
Ministry to the LGBTQ+ Community
It was early in the legalization of same sex weddings and I was richly blessed – again and again – as I met with same sex couples who needed to hear of how right they are in God’s eye.
And although my Ministry focus now seems to be taking me to end of life counselling, I will always treasure those times I could be with couples and tell them “We are here to celebrate love and we welcome God into our presence. For wherever love is, God is, for God is love!” For many, I believe it was the first time they heard someone declare their love is of God!!!
And, now, I am part of a group of friends that are on the end of life journey with one of those first couples I married, a couple that had been hurt so many times by churches declaring same sex love is wrong. Shame on those churches. Thank you, Clergy Support Memorial.