To be held Wednesday, December 18, 2019 at 7 pm in the Cathedral nave.
Following OOTC shelter operations during the 2018-2019 season which provided twice-weekly compassionate hospitality to those unable to be housed or sheltered elsewhere several issues and concerns emerged at the conclusion of the season. It was decided at our February 10, 2019 Annual Vestry Meeting to engage Deacon Michael Shapcott to create a report with a number of recommendations and options for developing and continuing the programme.
At an open meeting on Tuesday May 28, 2019 and following conversation together a secret straw ballot vote was taken which divided almost evenly between two recommendations: “Continue on site with changes” and “Assist the programme to transition elsewhere”.
Throughout the summer the OOTC board attended to two things: 1) The hiring of an executive director which resulted in the hiring of Lena Cimmarrusti effective Nov 1, 2019, and 2) a number of attempts to find another location which to date has been unsuccessful. The board also considered a food-only ministry, an idea abandoned given the multiple providers operating in Kamloops.
Therefore, the request to continue on site at St. Paul’s has come before Cathedral Committee. At a meeting Tuesday, Oct 29, 2019 Cathedral Committee gave approval in principle for a return to on-site operations subject to receipt of a satisfactory response to issues raised in the Shapcott report. The Committee was committed to engaging a wider scope of St. Paul’s parishioners who would wish to comment on this way forward; however, no decision was made on how this wider engagement would happen at this time.
The OOTC executive director and others subsequently joined Cathedral Committee on Tuesday Nov 19 for a presentation in response to the Shapcott report. Cathedral Committee was greatly encouraged by actions taken by the OOTC Board and by the ability of the OOTC Executive Director who is open to input and has proposed concrete and measurable solutions to concerns noted in the Shapcott report. Cathedral Committee was equally cognizant of the perspectives and concerns raised by others who spoke at the meeting. Importantly, prior to this meeting a request for a formal Vestry Meeting was received. Cathedral Committee then took time to consider, draft and formalize the most appropriate steps forward.
After reflection, conversation, and prayer, Cathedral Committee itself decided to call for a Special Vestry Meeting in accordance with Territory Policy 1.10.2 b) on Wednesday, December 18th at 7 p.m. in the Cathedral Nave.
The Special Vestry Meeting will be for necessary conversation and a decision on the following motion:
That this Special Vestry Meeting grant that OOTC may begin undertaking updated shelter services, on-site in the basement of St. Paul’s Cathedral, Sunday nights through Monday mornings, to the end of March 2020. Continued operations to the end of the term are subject to ongoing review by Dean, Wardens and Cathedral Committee, working in good faith with the OOTC Board and Executive Director.
The OOTC executive director is interested to meet with anyone who has suggestions or questions about the programme as newly imagined. Attached below is the OOTC initial response to the Shapcott report. Hard copies are also available on request.
The Cathedral Committee suggests that parishioners re-read the Shapcott report (attached below), especially the sections dealing with concerns (pgs. 6-10) and practical considerations (pgs. 35-37).