by the Holy Cross congregation
On the weekend of January 8 and 9, Holy Cross parishioners expressed their thanks in a warmly charged farewell to their departing pastor, Andrew Shim. Because of COVID restrictions, the tribute to Father Shim was given at the end of each Mass, and online for those individuals who were unable to attend. Father Shim’s sixteen-year ministry came to an end at Holy Cross, and he is taking up the role of Pastor at St. Francis Xavier parish located in Brockville. In addition, he was appointed as Dean, for the Eastern Deanery for the Archdiocese of Kingston.
His ministry is noted for laying a solid foundation in transforming the culture of the parish community and providing meaning to weekend celebrations and religious education. During his time here at Holy Cross, his primary focus was on the mission of the Church, and our need to evangelize, as individuals and as a community. Father Shim was hands-on in our music ministry, and actively encouraged young musicians to expand their gifts, and worked with them to develop wonderful musicians for our parish. Through his emphasis on the Sunday liturgies, we experienced uplifting hymns and music, numerous inspiring homily series, which made his preaching topical, relevant, and easily understood, and relied on technology to enhance the experience of Sunday services. His musical gifts were shared in many ways and admired and appreciated by parishioners.
His passion and innovation with technology came to the forefront in the early days of COVID-19 restrictions. Through clever use of recording, editing, and livestreaming, he was instrumental in producing polished and high-quality streaming weekend celebrations every weekend. These livestreamed Masses are still available to all, and particularly to those who cannot attend Mass in person.
Father Shim leaves behind an important physical legacy at Holy Cross. During his term here, he oversaw major renovation and modernization projects of the church: the beautiful refurbishing of the church interior, the addition of a narthex and portico at the entrance, the extensive landscaping, and restoration of the rectory. Holy Cross Church is a beautiful architectural structure and an important historical landmark in Kemptville; these restorations will ensure the integrity of the church for future generations.
Father Shim was an active participant in the North Grenville Ministerial Association and was a leading organizer and supporter of the annual “Walk of the Cross” event, which is held annually on Good Friday.
Father Shim is replaced by Raymond J. de Souza from Sacred Heart of Mary Parish on Wolfe Island. His appointment is effective January 10, 2022.