Moderator's stole, with four colours of the Medicine Wheel and United Church crest
Moderator's stole, with four colours of the Medicine Wheel and United Church crest. Photo: The United Church of Canada

Spirit of New Beginnings Woven into Moderator Stole

When the Rev. Jordan Cantwell was installed as Moderator three years ago at the 42nd General Council, she was given a stole, but it was not one that her predecessor, the Very Rev. Gary Patterson, wore. To revive a tradition that she believes formerly existed, Moderator Cantwell had a stole designed that will now be passed down from Moderator to Moderator.

She asked for a design that features the colours of the Medicine Wheel, is simple, and also includes the United Church crest. A poll at the General Council Office and among the wider church determined the final design of the new stole. Moderator Cantwell will place it on Moderator elect Rev. Dr. Richard Bott when he is installed as the new Moderator during an evening worship ceremony on July 27 that closes the 43rd General Council.

“GC43 will be making significant decisions that lead to the biggest structural changes in the church since the 1925 union. We are also creating a new relationship with Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in the church that represents an opportunity to re-create ourselves and build a relationship rooted in equality and justice,” says Cantwell.

“The stole will be remembered as going to Rev. Dr. Richard Bott at a moment in time that represented new beginnings in the church,” she adds. “It will be passed down among future Moderators with that spirit in mind.”