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Our 15th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner, held on Sunday Oct 14, 2018, was truly an evening of Unity in all of our Diversity as 70 Gabriola Ecumenical Society members and their guests gathered to “Give Thanks” and share and enjoy food and fellowship.

The tables were colorful and looked beautiful with thanks to the golf course staff who did an excellent job of both decorating and catering.   Nature’s brilliant autumn leaves and the fall sunshine added to the décor of the room.  Anniken made an absolutely gorgeous flower arrangement for raffling, the proceeds of $155.00  going to the PHC school food program. 

The evening’s atmosphere was very warm and uplifting as members at the door and the musicians welcomed us upon arrival.  We began with a glorious circle, all holding hands, as we reflected upon the many blessings we have received and sharing HOW we each show thanks in the world.

A special blessing was given to all gathered as we continue to traverse our ecumenical journey together, some who have been following this path for many years and some of us who  have newly arrived . There were no barriers in the room.

What a great sense of community as we  shared an abundance of homey  holiday food offers brought  by all to enjoy.  A Special thanks to Sue and Eric Boulton who once again gifted us with two large delicious turkeys (that’s 30 turkeys in 15 years!) and to Corinne and  Maureen who cooked and carved them. Also to Betty Schultz for the turkey she cooked and brought.

The Spirit was truly flowing freely. The music played by our talented musicians, led by Paul Gellman, made this a complete festive event. The joyful  music had many people singing and the spontaneous dancing was a sheer delight. Many thanks!

Thank you to our organizers, Carol Hemrich and Amy Block and to everyone who helped make this special evening happen. It was extra memorable for many!

The following day the leftovers were delivered to PHC and were  used to create food for the Monday Breakfast Bunch.

What a wonderful evening to give thanks and acknowledge our gratitude.  We are truly blessed in our Gabriola Island Community.


The Gabriola Ecumenical Society thanks this creative and enthusiastic group of six who brought a night of “Joyful sound of the Spirit” to the crowd of about 65 people who attended the Sunday nights performance at the Roxie!

Native drums and flutes, didgeridoos, harmonium and singing bowls accompanied by Farsi chanting, audience participation with call and response chanting, and story telling all contributed to a unique presence of spirit.  

It began with Amir Haghighi,  whose heartfelt prayer and passionate song  mesmerized the crowd.  In  a clear, strong operatic voice, Amir  sang in both Arabic and Farsi. He also added a traditional drum to enhance the rhythmic beat of the  song.

We were then  treated to the haunting, deep drone and  calls of the digeridoo. James Martin carved his instrument out of found beach wood  after exchanging Australia for the Salish Sea.  James noted that it took  8 years for the perfect piece to show itself and  shared that he  also uses his digeridoo for sound healing. 

Nancy Kaasay Waters sang and shared the lightness  and angelic sounds and healing power of her crystal bowls. This,  as we relaxed deeper into a contemplative and quite space that was emerging.  This continued as MaaRolie engaged us in call and response chants to deepen our connection and appreciation of self – accompanied by a Harmonium – an instrument that closely mimics the human breath.  Her spirit and joy coming forward in an infectious manner.  

Willie Thrasher drew us in with his love of story, accented by his Native drum at the perfect time – as we sat on the edge of our seat in anticipation of the next turn. He injected humour and laughter into the evening as we waited with baited breath to know the ending of the story – an unexpected twist!

The mood stilled as we were treated to peaceful melodies on Gary Badke’s hand-carved wooden flutes, and we could feel the music in our soul.  To top the evening,  a spontaneous jam with all the musicians weaving their voices and instruments together in unison to help the spirit guide our way home.

Thank you, Gary Badke for orchestrating this amazing experience. 


The Gabriola Ecumenical Society is excited to share our new theme for the 2018-19 year!  

The Spirit Flows Freely

As the world gets smaller and opinions get larger, the importance of acceptance and compassion for each other become paramount!  As we share our diversity in spiritual seeking  – we also experience our longing for Spirit to move freely and easily. 

For 2018-2019  we will celebrate this wonderful gift and support our  “Spirit to Flow Freely.”

Program planners  have been busy brainstorming for 2018-2019 and we are pleased to begin the year with music!  In fact, many of our this years programs will include a musical theme.                                               
Our first event is:

Joyful Sounds for the Spirit 

GES enthusiastically offers this opening program event  which fits beautifully in supporting our “Spirit to Flow Freely.”  

We begin the year with a musical celebration including traditional music played on traditional instruments by musicians from various spiritual cultures.  Read our upcoming events!


Important GES Membership Information

August 13, 2018

Membership in the GES Based on the Board’s decision to change the  Society’s financial year to September 1 to August 31 to have the financial year match […]

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Lifting Our Spirits – Turning towards Joy -Arinna Weisman

August 13, 2018

The smiles say it all…Turning towards Joy with Arinna Weismen was a weekend of gathering our spirits back and looking deep inside to find those wonderful qualities […]

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GES Picnic 2018

August 13, 2018

Thursday July 26 2018 – 2015 Stalker Rd, Gabriola Once again, and for 15  years running, GES members and friends gathered to enjoy the great weather, entertainment, company, and […]

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Do you want to volunteer for GES?

July 4, 2018

As a volunteer operated society, we are always looking for new ideas and enthusiastic participation in planning our events. We are inviting anyone with an interest in […]

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Buddhist Teachings and Meditation Retreat with Lama Losang Sampten, July 2018

July 3, 2018

This 9th  presentation in our GES Lifting the Spirit Theme for 2017-2018 was truly an outstanding experience.  “Spending a few days with Lama Losang is a delightful […]

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Lifting our Spirits – Finding the Sacred

May 31, 2018

“Very good!  Five very good presenters from very different experiences of spiritual questing, questing for meaning in life and freedom of Spirit, discovering meaning and still discovering …” […]

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Lifting our Spirits – Do It By Chants

May 11, 2018

“To create a spiritual community, even if for a little while, is a magnificent thing”. By the end of the Spring Forum weekend, I witnessed a most […]

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Community Seder

April 18, 2018

“What a memorable evening” was one comment in response to the festive sharing and learning about how a Seder works.  A big thank you to Amy and […]

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Invocations…Leah’s Enchanted Chants…

March 1, 2018

On Sunday, February 11th, twenty-five people enjoyed Leah Hokanson’s 2nd  of 3 “Innvocations”, community chanting series held at the net loft. Leah has the rare ability to sift […]

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Invocations: Community Chanting

February 5, 2018

An intimate group of 18 filled the space at the Netloft with beautiful chanting in January.   Here’s what we heard when it was done… “I love […]

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carolling – 2017

December 29, 2017

After a fog bound, perplexing day of  “should we go, or should we stay” ….we finally decided (after scouting the island roads) to do it! We were […]

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Ceremony of Remembrance

December 1, 2017

For the second year, the Gabriola Ecumenical Society hosted ‘Lifting our Spirit Through A Ceremony of Remembrance.’ A big thank you to Owen McCooey who took the […]

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Giving Thanks Dinner

November 9, 2017

For old and young alike, when Amy Block called us all to give thanks – there was a lot to be grateful for!  Over 70 people shared […]

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Thank You Jacquie!

October 16, 2017

On September 27, 2017 representatives from at least 16 different community groups got together at the Golf Course to thank Jacquie Jessup and  husband Bart for their […]

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