“Churches must find liberation from the old wineskin of “church” and become places of mission. We joyfully lose our lives for the sake of Jesus and the gospel, believing he will truly build His church.” - Michael Ward
Michael Ward – Lead Pastor
Michael was born and raised in Scarborough, Ontario. He attended the University of Toronto receiving an Honours B.A. in Economics and a Master of Divinity degree from Emmanuel College. Following his ordination in the United Church of Canada in 1977, he served a multi-point pastoral charge in Saskatchewan before receiving a call to become the Associate Pastor at Central United Church in 1980. In 1985, he became the Lead Pastor.
After almost a decade of confusion regarding the future direction and mission of Central, God ignited a vision in his heart to lead Central in a new and bold direction. Under his leadership the congregation has experienced incredible transformation. It has moved from a dying, ‘maintenance’ church into a vibrant and rapidly expanding ‘missional’ church, providing innovative and relevant outreach to the marginalized people of the downtown core.
Michael is married to Barb and has two daughters, Jennifer and Melanie, as well as one granddaughter, Ava.
Wayne Lewry – Associate Pastor
On July 1st of 2010 Wayne began his 20th year of ministry as Associate Pastor at Central. His ministry of 43 years began with Youth for Christ in Moose Jaw Saskatchewan. He travelled extensively, sharing the message of the power of God’s love to transform broken hearts and lives.
His ministry has involved Evangelism, Outreach and Church Extension. He has given leadership at Central in developing our Life Recovery Ministry, which involves Addiction Recovery, Grief Support, and Prison Ministry. Every Sunday evening he leads an amazing Celebrate Life Recovery Gathering – where Central’s wonderful diversity is clearly evident.
“To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends – this is an experience you must not miss…Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives.” Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 89
Wayne and his wife Marilyn have three adults sons: Greg, David and Nathan. One of their greatest joys is their grandchildren.
Lorraine Anderson – Spiritual Care Coordinator
Lorraine began attending Central United Church in February of 1980. Over the years, she has been actively involved in various volunteer positions, mainly with children, until 2001. At this time Lorraine became as staff associate, in the area of Pastoral Care. Lorraine has taken the Stephen Ministries Course, which is a one-on-one crisis care ministry, as well as numerous other courses related to pastoral care. She has also facilitated and participated in Boundaries courses several times. Lorraine is currently training to become a Spiritual Director through the FCJ Centre.
She is happily married to Grant and has 4 children and is expecting her first granddaughter. One of her passions is the 60km Weekend to End Women’s Cancers Walk, which has has been participating in for 5 years and is currently training, recruiting and fundraising for this coming year. Lorraine loves people, coffee, food, reading, movies, walking, nature, live theatre and deepening her relationship with God in a variety of ways. She also loves art, public speaking and dancing.
Kathy Seibel • Director of Music
Originally from Saskatchewan, Kathy has made Calgary her home since 1975. She has been active in Central’s Music Ministry since 1982. She has been leading the Creative Arts Ministry since 2005, a ministry that includes the musical and technical elements of worship.
In addition to her involvement at Central, Kathy is a contract employee of the Youth Singers of Calgary since 1998. She serves as the Director of Second Chants – an adult, recreational choir, as well as the Associate Director of the Senior Hi Division.
Kathy is married to Rob Rosin and has two adult sons and a little “daughter with a fur coat”, Slush (a shitzu).
Colleen Robarts • Administrative Secretary
She is the “Go-To” person at Central – with answers to pretty much any question out there. If you need something or are looking for something she usually knows how to help. She looks after the office administration, church rentals, promotional materials – including the Sunday morning bulletins. Colleen is always helpful and ready to greet you with a cheery voice when you call the office.
Colleen is originally from Nova Scotia but has made her home here in Calgary since 2004.
Lana Skauge • Children’s Ministry Animator
Lana has been a professional actor/singer since 1979 and is a member of both stage (C.A.E.A) and film (A.C.T.R.A.) associations. She has written 23 one woman shows and has toured extensively throughout Canada and Great Britain. Lana has taught at bot university and college levels. She is a director, recording artist and a published author working on her third book. She continues to perform and participate in numerous Artist-in-Residences. Lana recently received the Duval Lang Award for excellence in her field of Theatre for Young Audiences.
Lana comes to Central with the belief that “Love in Action” means working with the most stimulating group in a church – its children. She is fascinated with their spiritual connectedness and humbled by their thirst to grow in that realm. Dedicated to their maturation as leaders and seekers, Lana is honoured to be a part of Central’s team as their Children’s Ministry Animator.
Lana would prefer to be labeled as a seeker of story. She holds her family close to her spirit and values those who have become family of her heart.
Mario returned to our facility and maintenance staff team in 2011 after having previously serving on staff at Central for several years.
Mario is originally from Montreal, Quebec and has resided in Calgary for over 15 years. In addition to his position here at Central, Mario runs his own residential and commercial renovation/repair business.
Mario has a wicked sense of humour, is a lover of good music and goes above and beyond the call of duty for those in need.