L’Arche founder earns top humanitarian award To the delight of the Arnprior L’Arche community, L’Arche founder Jean Vanier has been awarded the prestigious Templeton Prize. Valued at about $1.7 million (U.S.), the prize is one of the world’s largest annual awards given to an individual. It honors a living person who has made exceptional contributions to affirming life’s spiritual dimension, whether through insight, discovery, or practical works. L’Arche, founded by Vanier, is a ground-breaking international network of communities where people with and without intellectual disabili-
ties live and work together as peers. Vanier, the son of a former Canadian Governor General, joins a distinguished group of 44 former recipients, including Mother Teresa, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and the Dalai Lama. When he founded L’Arche in France in 1964, Vanier, now 86, discovered that those people whom society typically considers of least value enable the strong to recognize and welcome their own vulnerability and to grow in their humanity. Five years later, the first Canadian community, L’Arche Daybreak was founded in Richmond Hill, Ontario.
In 1972, Vanier co-founded Faith and Light, which is now a worldwide network supporting families with members who have an intellectual disability. Worldwide, there are now 147 L’Arche communities in 35 countries on five continents. Twenty-nine communities are in Canada, spread from Comox Valley to Cape Breton and including Arnprior. In remarks prepared for the award announcement, Vanier made a plea for global peace, saying, “Before being Christians or Jews or Muslims, before being Americans or Russians
Rabbi Bulka to speak at Galilee Centre Galilee Centre is bringing a well-known Ottawa Rabbi, author and radio commentator to Arnprior for a public presentation. In a news release, the Galilee Centre says it is “honoured” to be presenting Rabbi Reuven Bulka as a guest lecturer on Wednesday, May 20. Dr. Bulka will speak from 7 to 9 p.m. as part of ‘What Matters’, a lecture and discussion series on a wide range of topics designed to increase participants’ awareness and understanding of what really matters in life, faith and spirituality. The speakers come from a range of religious traditions and areas of knowledge. This spring’s theme is “Raising Interfaith and Peace Awareness.” Rabbi Bulka, who will speak to the topic ‘What You Thought You Knew about Judaism’, is no stranger to people living in this area. He writes regularly for the Ottawa Citizen and has his own call in program Sunday evenings on CFRA radio.\ He has written more than 35 books and is former co-president of the Canadian Jewish Congress.
Dr. Bulka is the spiritual leader of Congregation Machzikel Hadas in Ottawa, where he had been since 1967. He is involved in many charitable activities and works in various areas of community involvement. Honours granted to Rabbi Bulka include the Gilbert Greenberg Distinguished Service Award, the Scouts Canada National Salute Award, the Key to the City of Ottawa, and the Order of Canada. He is the Honorary Chaplain of the Dominion Command of the Royal Canadian Legion, chair of the Trillium Gift of Life Network, and chair of the Hospice Ottawa West Campaign. Rabbi Bulka is dynamic and inspiring speaker who will bring insight into Judaism and answer any questions that people bring to the session. Tickets cost $10 each. To register or to find out more, go to galileecentre.com, email email@example.com, or call 613-623-4242, ext. 21. ‘What Matters’ has a different speaker the third Wednesday of each month from March to June.
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or Africans, before being generals or priests, rabbis or imams, before having visible or invisible disabilities, we are all human beings with hearts capable of loving.” In her remarks, Jennifer Simpson, daughter of Foundation president and chairman Dr. John M. Templeton, Jr. and granddaughter of Sir John Templeton, noted: “By recognizing the importance of every individual, regardless of their station in life, Jean Vanier underscores how each of us has the ability not only to lift up others, but also ourselves ... His powerful message and practice of love has the potential to change the world for the better, just as it has already changed the lives of countless individuals who have been touched by this extraordinary man.”
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The Vanier name is well-known and respected in Canada. Numerous schools, colleges, and other institutions bear the name of Jean Vanier or of his esteemed father and mother, former Governor General Georges P. Vanier and Pauline Vanier. Vanier has written and spoken tirelessly over more than 50 years, encouraging social justice, dialogue and unity among Christians and those of others faiths. He continues to live in the original L’Arche community, north of Paris, and will formally be awarded the Templeton Prize at a public ceremony in London, England on, May 18. L’Arche Arnprior will hold its annual general meeting and a 40th anniversary celebration June 20 at St. John Chrysostom Parish Hall.
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Arnprior Chronicle-Guide - Thursday, May 7, 2015 25
Published on May 7, 2015