died 23 September 2016
Brother John Clayton Goldring, a member of our North American Congregation, died on 23 September 2016 at Chatham, Ontario in the eighty-first year of his life and the thirty-seventh year of his religious profession.
Brother John was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1935 where his father was a branch manager of a bank. Shortly after Brother John’s birth the family moved to Chatham where he attended school. Following high school he worked first at the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and later at Cedar Springs Hospital. Later he worked for thirteen years as a bookkeeper at Standard Equipment Supply Company. He came to our community at the Mission House in Bracebridge, Ontario in 1978, where he made his initial profession on 29 June 1980. For a time he served as the Assistant Superior of the Canadian Congregation. When the community withdrew from Bracebridge in 1983, Brother John and the other members of the community moved first to Hamilton, Ontario and then in 1984 to the monastery in Cambridge. Brother John held a number of positions in the community, notably sacristan and bursar. In the community, Brother John’s bookkeeping experience was put to good use, as he was the bookkeeper for both Camp Saint Augustine, our camp for inner city children and for St. Stephen’s Church in the South End of Boston, where he also did a great deal of parish visiting. In addition he was the bookkeeper for Cowley Publications and later Cowley and Cathedral Bookstore. Brother John was quite a shy man and was uncomfortable speaking in public, but his sermons were often short, direct and memorable. Because of their brevity, they were once described as telegrams from God and carried a simple, yet profound message of God’s love. His most memorable sermon, on the mercy of God, was both a sermon and a prayer in which he spoke briefly about God’s mercy and then repeated the word mercy a number of times, allowing the word to sink into his listeners’ hearts. Because Brother John’s immigration status was for a time uncertain, his life profession was delayed. He was finally life professed on 6 January 1989. When it became clear that he required more care than we could give him at the monastery, he returned to Canada where he could be near his family, and especially his twin sister, Jane. He died surrounded by pictures of the Mission House at Bracebridge, his icons and a photograph of our founder, Father Benson, to whom he was devoted.
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