Praise for Gerry Vandezande

November-29-11

Speaker : Mr. McKay
Time : 29/11/2011 14:00:07
Context : Statements by Members

Mr. Speaker,

I rise today to place into our national record my commendation of a very extraordinary Canadian; a man who was not only a champion of justice, a voice for the voiceless, and a man deep and compelling faith, but a mentor and cherished friend.

His name was Gerald Vandezande. Sadly, Gerry left us on July 16 earlier this year. The catalogue of his achievements and contributions to his community and country is far too long to list in the short time I am given so I will list only a few.

“Canada's unassuming prophet,” as he was known, was the founder of the faith-based organization Citizens for Public Justice, a group which advocates for those in our society who are to easily forgotten, children, the poor, and on many other issues of social justice to which our faith in God and faith in the dignity of all human kind calls us to act. In his book Justice, Not Just Us Gerry expands on the intersection of faith & politics.

For his work Gerry received the Order of Canada and the love and indelible respect of his friends and colleagues.
Gerry loved to quote the prophet Micah: seek justice, be merciful, and walk humbly with god. This he did every day, whether in conversation with a Prime Minister or a person without a home, and was a living embodiment of these noble words.

On behalf of all Parliamentarians I offer my love and condolences to Gerry’s wife Wynne and their family.

Gerry, we will miss you always.