A little bit on how decisions are made:
Emmaus Community has a Chapter (the monastic word for decision-making body) made up of Covenanted Members of the Community. Decision-making is made by consensus involving all Covenanted Members at regular meetings.
We have 2 elected Co-Priors who are spokespeople and figureheads to represent Chapter, a Formation Director to guide Novices as well as shape ongoing formation in the Community - and a Cellarer, who keeps an eye on community finances and sustainability.
We also have a Safe Church Coordinator who oversees necessary screening and training for volunteers and staff.
Our Current Leadership:
Chapter is composed of all covenanted members. In addition, we have the following elected leaders:
- Marilyn Gough – Co-prior – is a granddaughter, niece and daughter of United Church of Canada ministers. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degree in vocal performance. Attracted to the Anglican Church through performance in choirs of the great English Choral repertoire, she now sings in the Cathedral Choir at Christ Church Cathedral, Victoria. Currently, she chairs the Adult Faith Formation committee at the Cathedral. She completed a Post-graduate Diploma in Theological Studies at the Vancouver School of Theology, UBC, in 2013. A founding member of the Emmaus Community, she is supported and nourished by our communal prayer. Emmaus supports her in her call to embody Christ here in our neighbourhood and to open spiritual conversations with our neighbours.
- Kirsten Horncastle – Co-prior. Kirsten was born and raised on Vancouver Island. She is has lived in multiple places on the island, and loves all that the island has to offer. Kirsten works in conflict management at the University of Victoria and is passionate about community building, restorative justice, fostering conflict competencies and social justice. She also loves knitting, hiking, surfing, snowshoeing, biking and camping. She has held many roles throughout her time in the diocese including but not limited to: parishioner, Sunday School Teacher, Vacation Bible School Coordinator, Youth Group Leader, YouthFest Coordinator, Representative in Companionship Diocese Exchange, and Chair of the Partners in Mission Committee.
- Margot Spence – Cellarer (or treasurer) is a founding Emmaus member and currently has the role of “Cellarer” (aka bookkeeper/treasurer). After years with an intellectual and evangelical bent, Margot is attracted to the Emmaus vision of bringing prayer, presence and simplicity to life through Christian community in the Fernwood neighbourhood. Margot lives in the upstairs suite at Belmont house (with a kittycat Vader and is thrilled that she can walk to her full time job with the BC Government (in forest policy) through Fernwood!
Meagan and Rob Crosby-Shearer serve as appointed ministers / Priests to the Emmaus Community - and are both clergy in good standing with the Anglican Diocese of BC and are also on the rolls of the United Church of Canada (former Victoria Presbytery). They are parents to amazing twins - Amaya and Zion - who all live with three cats: Max, Francis and Clare in Belmont House.
The Rev. Meagan Crosby-Shearer - Lead Priest -has a rich and varied life experience. Born in Victoria, she has a passion for creative liturgy and prayer, social justice and engaging ways of telling our faith story. She has been involved in musical theatre, gospel choirs and loves reading and the beauty of the West Coast! She served in the Philippines for a year as an ‘ecumenical-intern-in-mutual-mission’ with the United Church of Canada. She is trained as a Registered Nurse and is currently a priest with the Anglican Diocese of BC serving at St. Matthias Church. She also has worked part time at the Local General Store – a local/fair-trade store in the Haultain Corners (Oaklands) neighbourhood.
The Rev. Rob Crosby-Shearer – Formation Director & AbbeyChurch Planter-Priest – has worked in Christian ministry for the last 20 years. He has been part of Pentecostal, Baptist, United Church, Anglican and Roman Catholic congregations (to name a few!). Prior to forming the Jeremiah Community in Toronto, Rob lived for 5 years in Zacchaeus House, a Christian/Catholic Worker community house of hospitality, served as music director at the campus-based Wine Before Breakfast, was National Youth Ministry Coordinator with PWRDF (a Global Development/Justice organization), directed the the Nidus Festival with the Canadian Council of Churches in from 2005-2006, worked in campus ministry and congregational ministry in the United Church of Canada and was involved for over a decade at Parkdale Neighbourhood Church (a Baptist ‘street church’ now called “The Dale”) and worked as Community Life Minister at St. Philip Anglican Church in Victoria and casual help at the Mustard Seed Street Church. He has co-owned an organic bakery, made all kinds of music, loves bike riding and touring, hiking and loves cooking and coffee (and Trappist beer too)!