The Clergy Support Memorial Church Board was in full agreement to certify the Rev. André Fontaine to the Office of Ordained Minister on December 17, 2009. After a few years’ hiatus, André has rejoined our fold in ministry on November 30, 2021.
Rev. André has dedicated most of his life to the values of social justice, inclusion and care of the most vulnerable in society, the welfare of children. Both in his secular work, as well as his spiritual life, André seeks out someone or somewhere where he can make a difference in a person’s life. Knowing that we are all created equally, his ministry recognizes the difference between rich, poor, ill or healthy, straight or queer. André knows that the structures of the world are not fair, and he works tirelessly to bring about hope and goodness to those who experience little, if any, of it in their lives.
- Graduate of the Canadian Ministers’ Institute – November 2021
- Master of Social Work, University of Windsor – 2016
- Bachelor of Theology, Saint Paul University, Ottawa – 1995
- Certificate in Missiology, Saint Paul University, Ottawa – 1988
- Various workshops in Community Development, Addictions, Mental Health, Biofeedback, Auricular Therapy.
Awards and Memberships
- Adoption Activist Award, The North American Council on Adoptable Children – 2011
- Community Award, Centertown Laundry Co-Op – 2009
- Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Society Anti-Oppression Roundtable (Past Chair, Member)
- Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Society LSBTQ2S+ Committee (Founder, Member)
- Child Welfare Community of Practice Leads (Secretary)
- Ottawa Rainbow Service Providers Network (Lead)
In a wonderfully inclusive way, the world is the stage for André’s church, where he understands that we are called to go and make a difference. He loves the opportunity to serve those who have no source to pastoral care and he has presided over hundreds of life celebrations for infants, couples and families.
In and outside of his “day job” with the Children’s Aid Society, Rev. André oversees equity initiatives. He mentors others in recognizing, and working to end structures of oppression through the lens of combating colonialism, sexual discrimination and bias (in all their expressions), racism, etc.
André also works closely with First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities, Muslim, Jewish, Christian, and other faith groups, as well as with the LGBTQ2S+ community.
Rev. André facilitates many different training and discussion groups:
- He is an approved Kairos Indigenous Blanket Exercise facilitator. By engaging participants on the emotional and intellectual levels, the blanket exercise effectively educates and increases empathy.
- André is an Equity in Child Welfare facilitator, focusing on the safety and well being of children within the context of family and community.
- Rev. André also facilitates Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) workshops, which deals with strategies and approaches for providing LGBTQ2S+ affirming services.
- André also facilitates a monthly Equity Café discussion to encourage attendees to commit to equity, diversity, and inclusion principles.
André enjoys sharing food and conversation around the dinner table with family and friends. He also loves outdoor activities, including long walks by the ocean or hiking, as well as growing produce in his garden. He also enjoys knitting sweaters, blankets and stuffed toys. When a family member or a friend are expecting a baby, André will knit a stuffed animal that represents the future child’s parents. His knitting has a special meaning for Rev. André as it provides warmth, comfort and care to others.
In His Own Words
“I love connecting with people, being there for them if they need support, and celebrating with them during their times of happiness.”