The Carlington Summit
by David Darwin.

Are you interested in finding out more about the Christian faith? Do you want to have fun at the same time? St. Elizabeth parish is sponsoring an Alpha Course and invites anyone, of any faith, to come and share in a wonderful, community-oriented learning experience.

The Alpha Course is aimed at those wanting to investigate Christianity, new Christians, those who feel that they have never really got going as a Christian, newcomers to the church and those who want to brush-up on the basics.

Over a span of ten weeks, participants will listen to a talk each evening on a particular theme and then divide into smaller groups to discuss any questions raised from the talk. Participants are encouraged to ask anything. It's a place where no question is regarded as too simple or too hostile.

Several parish communities in the Ottawa-Carleton area have successfully offered the Alpha Course, but none in Carlington. The first evening is scheduled for Thursday, September 28 in the parish hall (1303 Leaside Avenue corner of Merivale). Registration begins on the weekend of September 9 and 10 after the masses. If you are interested in registering, please contact the St. Elizabeth parish office weekday mornings at 725-2242.

There is no cost for the course and you are under no obligation to continue if you do not feel the course is of value to you. Here are some comments from those who have completed the course:

“It really was an excellent experience, one I will never forget.”

“I recaptured a zest for living and felt I was part of a loving community made up of caring people.”

“Alpha answered all the difficult questions I had about Christianity but didn't know where to find the answers.”

“At the end of the evening, I was astonished at how much I had enjoyed myself. As the weeks went by, I found myself looking forward to [it] - not so much because of the religious aspect but because of the stimulating debates about subjects which, in our busy lives, few of us take time to address.”

The Rev. Tom Robinson, National Coordinator, Barnabas Ministries, Canada has said, “Alpha is touching hearts and changing people in a surprising way. It is a great sign of hope. People want to hear the Gospel, plain and simple, and when they do, they listen.”

According to the Rev. Canon Robin Guinness, Rector, St. Stephen's Anglican Church, Westmount [Montreal], “Alpha courses have superbly equipped people to communicate their faith and inspired them to develop relationships in which this can take place.”

Interested? Why not attend the first evening on September 28 and see if the course interests you. It may just change your life. More information on the Alpha Course experience may be obtained by visiting the official Canada web page at or from the originating site in Britain at


Added note by Clem: I attended the Alpha at St Stephen's last spring and would recommend the progran to new and established Christians. We had about 25 to 35 attending of which half were non-members of St Stephens and several were from other Christion denominations. One of the main things I enjoyed was the fellowship gained among the group.