Christ Church Cathedral Ottawa
Palm Crosses



The Very Reverend Shane A.D. Parker
Dean of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa
Rector of Christ Church Cathedral

The Very Reverend Dean Shane Parker "We find our true nature when we locate God's love within us and allow ourselves to be guided by it in all we endeavour to do. To grasp this, however tentatively, is to receive a sense of hope and purpose that is alluring, affirming and life-changing."

The Very Reverend Shane Parker was born to Irish parents in Edmonton, Alberta, and lived in western Canada during his childhood. He worked as a labourer for several years before undergraduate and graduate studies in sociology at Carleton University, and was employed as a sociologist prior to studies in theology at Saint Paul University. He was ordained as a priest in the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa in 1987 and was appointed as the Dean of Ottawa and Rector of Christ Church Cathedral in 1999. Prior to his appointment as dean, he served as a parish priest, a regional archdeacon, and then as the Diocesan Archdeacon.

Dean Parker's leadership of the Cathedral has been characterized by major change and renaissance in all aspects of its life and ministry. By cultivating an environment which encourages the sharing of many people's gifts, the liturgy, community and governance of the Cathedral have become both dynamic and focused. This has had the effect of opening up the Cathedral to become a truly diverse and vibrant parish—with strong ministries of worship, music, pastoral care, spiritual development, fellowship, and outreach.

The establishment of an endowment program, a reserve fund, and an annual stewardship cycle have steadily moved the Cathedral toward financial strength. The major redevelopment of Cathedral and Diocesan properties in partnership with the Windmill Development Group has completed its first phase, and the complete makeover of the lands surrounding the Cathedral is expected to conclude by 2019—and will see the Cathedral at the heart of a striking, sustainable, and pedestrian-friendly neighbourhood.

Dean Parker is well-known through participation in a number of organizations and causes in the wider community, and by continuing a long tradition of making the Cathedral available for many different kinds of civic and ecclesial events. In 2010 he was the recipient of the Interfaith Ottawa Award, presented by the Mayor of the City of Ottawa, for devoted service to promoting interfaith dialogue and cooperation.

He has served as a sessional professor of pastoral theology at Saint Paul University and currently chairs its Anglican Studies Advisory Committee. He has also served for many years as a member of Carleton University's Research Ethics Board. Following many years of writing for the Ottawa Citizen's Ask the Religion Experts column, a collection of his insightful essays were published by Novalis in a book called Answering the Big Questions.

Dean Parker has trained in mediation and reconciliation, and is a member of the Ontario Association of Family Mediators. He currently serves as vice-chair and director on the board of the Anglican Foundation of Canada, and chair of its strategy committee.

Answering the Big Questions
Answering the Big Questions
Author: Shane Parker
Publisher: Novalis (2005)
Download (pdf)

The Venerable Pat Johnston
Pastoral Vicar (half-time)

The Venerable Pat Johnston is delighted to be serving as the interim Pastoral Vicar (half-time). Pat grew up in Deep River, Ontario where she sang in the children's choir of St. Barnabas Anglican Church. For a year after high school Pat volunteered in the parish of Christ Church, Grande Prairie, Alberta. It was there that she fell in love with parish ministry.

After studies at Queen's, Kingston and Trinity, Toronto, Pat was ordained in 1983 at the Cathedral and has served in the Diocese of Ottawa since then. Her appointments have included city (including the Cathedral in the early 1990's), suburban, town and the Bishop's Office. Often Pat's work involved building buildings and always building Christian community. She is one of those rare people who like meetings (although she no longer likes the ones that go on late at night). Since her retirement from St. Matthew's, Ottawa in March, 2016, Pat has had several interim pieces of work throughout the diocese. She looks forward to immersing herself in the life of the Cathedral and helping this community follow Jesus on the way.

Pat and her husband Jamie Tomlinson celebrated their marriage at Christ Church Cathedral in 1993. They have one son, Simon who lives and works in Pat's hometown of Deep River. They also have one dog, Farley, who went to one Blessing of the Animals' liturgy and has not been invited back!

Please introduce yourself to Pat and tell her some way that the Cathedral has been a blessing in your life. back to top

Deacon Christine Jannasch, MSW RSW BTh
Pastoral Associate

Born and raised in Nova Scotia, Christine earned a nursing degree from McMaster University. She worked in several general hospitals and in the Neonatal Intensive Care of the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario. After 10 years as a stay at home mom to four sons, she obtained her Masters of Social Work from Carleton University, working at the Emergency Department of the Ottawa General Hospital, The Arthritis Society, the Community Care Access Centre of Ottawa-Carleton, as well as The Hospice at Maycourt. She obtained certification in Psychosynthesis Counselling, a method of transpersonal psychology, for the basis of her work as a counsellor and psychotherapist in private practice.

In 2016, after joining her husband on his retirement Camino, Christine followed a call out of private practice. After completing a Bachelor of Theology at St Paul University and the Jubilee course in Spiritual Direction from the Tatamagouche Centre in Nova Scotia, Christine was ordained in 2013 as a diocesan deacon of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa. She is appointed as chaplain to The Well Drop In Centre for Women and Women with Children, and as pastoral associate to Christ Church Cathedral. Christine is on the leadership team of Contemplative Outreach Eastern Ontario, which provides teaching and retreats on Centering Prayer, a method of silent prayer. She also has a practice in counselling and spiritual direction. Her website is

Christine lives in Aylmer with her husband, and loves getting outdoors into the garden or Gatineau Park.

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LCol, The Reverend Canon Michelle Staples
Honourary Assistant

Michelle Staples Padre Michelle Staples was born and raised in the United Kingdom. Following service as a British Police Officer and a Civil Servant, she arrived in Canada and shortly thereafter commenced studies with Saint Paul University. Upon graduation, Padre Staples was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Ottawa where she served as curate to St. Matthias Church, and then rector of St. Mary's, Russell. In addition to her duties as parish priest, she served for 10 years on the Anglican Roman Catholic Dialogue (ARC Canada), acted as post ordination training coordinator for the diocese, served as a delegate to General Synod, a member of Faith Worship and Ministry for two terms, and as a member of the worship committee for General Synod 2003. She was appointed Canon Ecumenist for the Diocese of Ottawa in January 2001.

Joining the military in 2003, Padre Staples was posted to Greenwood NS during which time she served with 14 Air Maintenance Squadron, 404, 405 and 415 Squadron. Promoted to the rank of Major and posted in 2007 to Canadian Forces Base Petawawa, she served with the Canadian Special Operations Regiment and 427 Special Operations Squadron. During this time she provided ministry in diverse locations world-wide, working within a multi disciplinary team to provide Ministry of Presence to Canadian Special Operations Forces Command personnel and their families at home and abroad.

In the summer of 2010, she was posted as the Brigade Chaplain for 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group as the Senior Team Lead for 17 chaplains serving in Edmonton and Shilo. In November 2011 she was installed as a Canon of the church with the Anglican Military Ordinariate.

Promoted and posted to the Royal Canadian Navy in August of 2012, Padre Staples assumed the role of Maritime Atlantic Formation Chaplain, and in November 2012 received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal for services to the members and families of the Canadian Armed Forces. In August of 2013 she was appointed Command Chaplain for the Royal Canadian Navy, and is currently residing in Ottawa.

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James Calkin
Director of Music and Organist

A native of Nova Scotia, James studied at Dalhousie (B.Mus. with a University Medal) and McGill Universities (M.Mus.) as well as the Eastman School of Music where his teachers were David MacDonald, John Grew, and David Higgs. While at Eastman he served as a graduate assistant to early music legend Paul O’Dette. In 1996-1997 a Canada Council for the Arts grant enabled studies in France with the organists Louis Robilliard (Lyon) and Dominique Serve (Aix-en-Provence). James has also studied conducting with Denise Ham, Joseph Flummerfelt, Simon Carrington, and Hugh Floyd and participated in masterclasses hosted by Chorus America and the Conductors Institute at Bard College.

Prior to his appointment to the Cathedral, James served for ten years as Director of Music at First Baptist Church, Ottawa. From 1994-96 he served as Assistant Organist at Christ Church Cathedral, Montréal having previously served as Assistant Organist at the University of King’s College, Halifax. From 1997-2001 he was Director of Music at First Presbyterian Church, Niles, Michigan, where he led a music program of seven choirs and well over one hundred singers.

James has been the recipient of peer-adjudicated grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD), and the Nova Scotia Talent Trust as well as numerous academic awards at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He is also a prizewinner in numerous competitions including the National Playing Competition of the Royal Canadian College of Organists and the Lynnwood Farnam Organ Competition (Montréal).

His concert activities include numerous recitals on distinguished instruments in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Germany, Hong Kong and Singapore as well as performances on the English and French networks of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and at several national conventions of the Royal Canadian College of Organists. In addition he is a frequent accompanist and continuo player for ensembles throughout Canada’s Capital Region, including the National Arts Centre Orchestra and Choir, Thirteen Strings Chamber Orchestra, the Ottawa Choral Society, the Ottawa Bach Choir, the Cantata Singers of Ottawa and the Anglican Chorale.

Andrew McAnerney
Associate Director of Music

Andrew McAnerney Andrew McAnerney is Artistic Director of the Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal (SMAM), the Cantata Singers of Ottawa and the Anglican Chorale of Ottawa. He has a wealth of experience as a conductor, educator, singer, and arranger. He began as a boy chorister in the choirs of Cirencester Parish Church and Gloucester Cathedral, then went on to sing as an academical clerk at Magdalen College, Oxford, as a lay clerk in St.George's, Windsor Castle and then at Rochester Cathedral.

Since moving to Canada in 2013, Andrew has worked with a range of professional and amateur ensembles. He has taught at the Cammac Music Centre and toured Ontario, Québec and the Maritimes with SMAM and Choeur Louisbourg. He has also recorded the music of Lassus to critical acclaim on the ATMA label.

Andrew was co-director of Sing Ottawa en choeur, the official choral celebration of Canada 150, which took place in June 2017. He will direct the first complete modern performance of William Boyce's Birthday Ode for the King, Prepare, prepare your songs as part of the Montreal 375 celebration in October 2017.

Having been raised in the Anglican choral tradition, Andrew is passionate about Cathedral music. He looks forward to an excellent term with the men and boys of Christ Church Ottawa. Andrew and his wife Émilie have two young sons.

Leora Nauta
Music Associate

Leora Nauta is a conductor and organist new to the Ottawa area. An intensely compelling performer, Leora excels in delivering arresting and powerful interpretations of the music she loves. Lauded by Radio Ara Europa as “an exceptional musician… warm, open, and absolutely impassioned in her craft”, Leora's entire life has been devoted to the performance and proliferation of classical music. After a very long journey, she is delighted to call Ottawa her new home.

Leora began her education at The King’s University (B.Mus) with Dr. Jacobus Kloppers, specializing in the rhetorical aspects of Bach’s free organ works. She then moved to McGill University (MMus), where she studied with John Grew and William Porter, and pursued further graduate work at the University of Notre Dame (MSM) under the tutelage of Dr. Craig Cramer. Subsequently she worked her way to Amsterdam Conservatory and Utrecht University with Pieter van Dijk and Jacques van Oortmerssen, finally concluding her formal education at The New England Conservatory of Music with Erica Washburn and Hugh Wolff. Throughout her studies she received numerous academic distinctions, including The Gerry Segger Scholarship in Performance Excellence, and was a prizewinner in the Lynwood Farnam Organ Competition (Montréal).

Before moving to Ottawa, Leora held diverse Director, Organist, and Conductor positions across North America and in Europe, including such distinguished institutions as The Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul (Montréal) and The Basilica of the Sacred Heart (Notre Dame). As conductor, Leora has focused her energy on Medieval repertoire, working with ensembles such as Quarterna Medieval Ensemble, Ensemble Laetitia and The Commonwealth Chorale. Her organ performance career has taken her to Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Poland, The Netherlands, and across The USA and Canada.

In addition to her work at Christ Church Cathedral, Leora serves as Music Director at St. Timothy's Classical Academy and directs several chamber choruses throughout the Ottawa area.

Christ Church Cathedral Ottawa  | 414 Sparks Street, Ottawa ON K1R 0B2 | Tel: (613) 236-9149 Fax: (613) 236-4386  | Cathedral Office
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