Donald died over six years ago, "after thirty wonderful years of marriage," but Doris is emphatic: "The very fact that I'm doing what I'm doing is linked to Donald." Remembering "the challenge of going anywhere in South Africa as a mixed race couple," Doris also recalls the unfolding of deep connections between whites and blacks there, both in violence and reconciliation: "human beings are capable of both extremes."
Since retiring in 2002, Doris has become "even more busy!" A singer from childhood, she sings in the Grand Philharmonic Choir, doing "big, wonderful works! On Good Friday, we (did) Bach's B Minor Mass. It takes body and mind, (but) it's also spiritual, it builds community listening to others."
Doris enjoys long walks with her "wonderful companion" Airedale, Malaika (Swahili for 'Little Angel" or "Darling"). She does a lot of reading, and "quilting is my therapy in stress."
Reflecting on "the incredible need of people to belong," Doris asks, "What difference has it made? The primacy of human beings (over) things; you walk through a crowded street, and a total stranger smiles at you! It's the small things that touch me. My life has been enriched through my international and ecumenical experiences." She describes "a real need to get out of North America and Europe every so often, to be reminded to see... that we can't have it all."
Doris firmly believes that there are others in the Diocese "who could do it," provide local leadership in this essential work, and invites any interested parishioners to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a meeting and share the work. Gentle, gracious, wise and articulate, Doris' faithfulness and experience are gifts to the Diocese of Niagara, generously offered in hope of drawing new commitment from the people of the Diocese to our brothers and sisters in the rest of the world.
Jesus' said, "As much as you do it to the least of these, you do it to me."
What can you do, not just for him, but to him in those whose cries of pain echo around the world?
How can we, as individuals, parishes and a Diocese, bring new life to others?
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