Entries by moira

Searching for Affordable Housing

You would think that in a city like Ottawa, when a vulnerable citizen faces a crisis and loses their housing, there would be a system in place to support him in finding affordable housing. And there is. But the truth is – the system is flawed.   Take Jack: a young man in his twenties […]

She is Not Unknown

  You see her every day on your way to work. Usually she is sitting at Tim Horton’s or resting on a bench.  She is hard to miss – a small woman, probably less than 100 pounds – wearing many layers of clothing which make her look even tinier. She is small but strong; carrying […]

Canadian Stone Carving Festival

On July 21-23, thirty-five stone carvers gathered on Ottawa’s historic Sparks Street for the Canadian Stone Carving Festival. Each was given a large slab of limestone and 18 hours to make it into something. During those 18 hours, I saw some amazing things. I saw people bringing renewed life into an old art. I saw community […]

Stone Carving Workshop

Innercity Arts was lucky enough to have Patrick Imai, a local carver, volunteer his time to come in to teach us about soap stone carving. Each youth was given a piece of stone, a file, and various types of sand paper. They were given basic instructions and then invited to try it. I must admit, […]

Loss, Hope and Joy

“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy,” Psalm 30: 11 A hopeful image from the book of Psalms, but I wonder how much comfort it would give a young couple mourning the loss of their only child… It was my first […]

“At Risk”

    The term “at risk youth” is thrown around a lot, often without much thought or care. It’s a label that can feel very cold and dehumanizing. But what are “at risk youth” really “at risk” of? I think if we stopped and answered that question, we wouldn’t use the term so casually. Because […]

The Portrait of the Artist

“Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter. The sitter is merely the accident, the occasion. It is not he who is revealed by the painter; it is rather the painter who, on the coloured canvas, reveals himself.” ― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray   When […]

Danielle’s Story: Episode 5 – I found OIM (or OIM found me)

“Danielle’s Story” is a series running throughout December. To listen to the audio backgrounder from Family Radio CHRI, click the play button below. Follow along all month to hear this amazing story!     It was about this time I met up with an Ottawa Innercity Ministries street outreach team. It was rainy and cold and […]

He fought like a soldier

Every Tuesday for the last several years, you could always count on Marcel to greet you at the drop-in. Walking in first thing in the morning (with a Tim Horton’s cup in hand, of course), he would make his way to his regular table, but not without first greeting each staff member and volunteer. He […]