Magazine article Anglican Journal

A Clear Vision of What You Care About

Magazine article Anglican Journal

A Clear Vision of What You Care About

Article excerpt

The Rev. Tim Sale likes the title "the longest-serving honorary assistant in the world," which he earned at St. Paul's Anglican Church in Winnipeg. He began there in 1966 as a new priest in youth outreach ministry with a passion for social justice and ecumenism and became the honorary assistant in 1969. "My dean of theology had once told me, 'We have to find the right place for you because you're going to have trouble with the church, and the church is going to have trouble with you,'" Sale recalls.

Sale was a science student and a self-admitted "pretty secular guy" at University of Toronto, when, as a scout leader in a Toronto church, he encountered a single working mom about to lose her home. Angered by the rector's dismissive response to his request to help the woman, Sale questioned his church's relevance in society.

Nonetheless, he enrolled in the theology faculty, first as an academic student and then as a candidate for ordination.

Now 71 and retired from Manitoba politics but active in his community, Sale was first elected to office in 1971, when, as a member of a three-church inner-city ministry, he ran for Fort Gary's school board, which, he says, "was mired in the dark ages." He and four radical colleagues all won seats. "It was part fun, part grief, but I learned a huge amount," he says. "Since my first experiences as a scout leader, I had realized that my heart, is about social justice."

In 1971, Sale became a social planner for an inner-city ministry run by the United Church of Canada, facilitating halfway houses, low-income housing and health clinics.

Sale was also chief executive officer of the Social Planning Council of Winnipeg from 1976 to 1985. In 1985, he joined the Manitoba Department of Finance and served as assistant deputy minister of education from 1987 to 1989.

Sale later set up a public-policy consulting firm and joined an extra-parliamentary group called Choices, which ran parallel budgets to those of Gary Filman's Conservatives. …

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