A Surprise Celebration for Pine River United Church in Ripley, Ontario

We have a surprise New Affirming Ministry Celebration coming up on Monday September 28th.  Slowed for their vote by COVID -19, Pine River UC in Ripley ON had thought that they would be unable to hold their celebration before their current minister leaves on September 30th.  However, having seen two online celebrations, they decided to celebrate on Monday evening September 28th at 7 pm EDT via Zoom. All are welcome, contact Pine River directly for the Zoom link.

Congratulations Pine River for all your dedicated work to the Affirming process and for adjusting to these challenging times. We are so thankful for your ministry!

Contact and address:

Pine River United Church
2894 Concession 4,
Ripley, Ontario, N0G 1R0

Website: www.pineriverunitedchurch.com

Phone: (519) 395-5371

Email: pineriverchurch@hurontel.on.ca

Please send a note of congratulations to the entire faith community of Pine River United Church through this private form:

NEW! Kitchen Sink Series

You’re invited to join Affirm United as we gather online every other Tuesday night for a time of learning together in community. This is your chance to connect with people from across the country who share your passion for Two Spirit and LGBTQ+ justice.
Join us this fall as we talk about everything and the kitchen sink – our topics might be a bit unpredictable but it will certainly be fun!

September 22: Affirming Show & Tell

6:30-8:00pm EDT

Join us September 22 as we kick off the Kitchen Sink Series with your hosts Michiko Bown-Kai and Jeffrey Dale. We will be hosting our first ever Affirming show & tell! Find an item that is part of your Affirming story and be ready to share the item and why you chose it in 1-2 minutes. An Affirming story is any experience you have had that has helped you learn or define for yourself your identity, sense of community, or understanding of Two Spirit and LGBTQ+ justice. Do you have a t-shirt from a special event? Do you have a keepsake from a date you went on? We can’t wait to fill the evening with wonder and appreciation!

Topic: Kitchen Sink Series Event
Time: 6:30pm – 8:00pm EDT

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 988 2809 7187
Passcode: 815307

Phone In instructions to ZOOM:

Canada (dial the number in your area code or use the Toll Free number below enter the meeting ID and the passcode with your key pad):

+1 778 907 2071
+1 204 272 7920
+1 438 809 7799
+1 587 328 1099
+1 647 374 4685
+1 647 558 0588
Toll Free: +1 855 703 8985

Summer Conference Worship Service Sunday July 26th, 2020

For those who missed our AUSE Summer Conference Worship Service this morning … please enjoy this recorded version:

Enjoy this moving service from our Summer Conference 2020 virtual Worship Service. Many thanks to all of our conference and worship attendees! It was a wonderful weekend! Please share this video with your congregations.

Affirm United/S’affirmer Ensemble

8th Sunday after Pentecost
July 26, 2020

Prepared by Rev. Emma Pipes and Aaron Miechkota

People Involved:

Rev. Emma Pipes & Aaron Miechkota – Worship Leaders
Michiko Bown-Kai – Gives the Welcome & Closing Benediction
Michele Petick – Scripture Reading
Aaron Miechkota – on Ukulele Musician to lead hymns
Julian Munro – Children’s Time

Donations to the work at Affirm United / S’affirmer Ensemble can be made at:


AUSE 2020 Summer Conference Itinerary

A special invitation from Co-Chair Michiko Bown-Kai

Sure, things are a little different this year, these are strange times indeed, but we are carrying on with our Summer Conference!

You are welcome to join us … actually, it wouldn’t be any fun without you, so please come to our first virtual Affirm United / S’affirmer Ensemble Summer Conference, AGM & Worship service.

Here is what you need to know to get quick access to the meetings and events, so save this post! 😀😀😀 And see you this weekend! For Zoom links, copy and paste the meeting url starting with https:// and paste into your browser to access Zoom. Questions? Email Michele at communications@ause.ca

I T I N E R A R Y with Zoom links (times are in EDT)

Saturday July 25th, 2020

10-11am: Gathering

Every year after our Annual Conference, we always hear that people want more opportunities to get to know each other better. Come join us for this opportunity to learn more about this coast-to-coast community of people that are a part of Affirm United/S’affirmer Ensemble. We will be using break out groups as an opportunity for people to get to know each other.Hosted by: Michiko, co-chair of Affirm United

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/97305026462?pwd=TnVPZ2xwYS9CaGgxcENHL1lDTkxLdz09

Meeting ID: 973 0502 6462 Passcode: 180475

11:15am-12:15pm: Community Circles

One of the things we love the most about attending conferences is meeting others who we have a shared connection with. Community Circles are designed as spaces where people can gather for more specific conversations about their lived experiences. We are in the process of developing this space and are open to suggestions of groups and are looking for people who would be willing to act as a host for these groups.We realize that some people may belong to more than one of these groups – it’s up to the individual to discern where best they’d like to go.Some of Community Circles planned are:

  • BIPOC, hosted by Deulita Datus
  • Clergy, hosted by Michiko Bown-Kai
  • Allies, hosted by Marly Bown & David Kai
  • Trans and Non-Binary, hosted by Julian Munro
  • New to Affirm, hosted by Linda Hutchinson
  • Bi/Pan§ Ace/Aro
  • Rural

Hosted by: Michele Petick, Affirm United Communications Coordination, Group hosts will be listed as they are confirmed.

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/97305026462?pwd=TnVPZ2xwYS9CaGgxcENHL1lDTkxLdz09

Meeting ID: 973 0502 6462 Passcode: 180475

12:30-1:30pm: Lunch break

This time does not have scheduled programming.

1:30-4pm: Annual General Meeting

1:30-2pm: Welcoming and Passing the Peace

2-4pm: Annual General Meeting

Join us early to greet one another and make sure your tech is working before our AGM.

Members and adherents are welcome to join us for our Annual AGM. If you would like to become a member of Affirm United/S’affirmer Ensemble click here. The agenda for the AGM will be made available online prior to the meeting. We look forward to sharing and celebrating the many accomplishments of Affirming Ministries over the past year!

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/99046197435?pwd=WmpyWjFoK05jSFAydTNrVmlTV1dtQT09

Meeting ID: 990 4619 7435 Passcode: 298112

Sunday July 26th, 2020

11:30am-1pm: Worship

11:30 – 12pm: Coffee Hour and Welcome

12-1pm: Worship

All are welcome to join us for worship! Feel free to sign on early for a “bring your own drink” coffee hourHosted by: Rev. Emma Pipes and Aaron MiechkotaJoin

Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/98491948132?pwd=YkI2OTNZa3VlZ20xSVlRdTNVVndTZz09

Meeting ID: 984 9194 8132 Passcode: 864965

Phone In instructions to ZOOM:

Canada (dial the number in your area code or use the Toll Free number below enter the meeting ID and the passcode with your key pad):

  • +1 778 907 2071
  • +1 204 272 7920
  • +1 438 809 7799
  • +1 587 328 1099
  • +1 647 374 4685
  • +1 647 558 0588

Toll Free:

+1 855 703 8985


AGM Agenda

Annual Report 2019

Draft Minutes Annual General Meeting 2019

Revised Proposed 2021 Budget

Nominations Report

Nominee Bios

Nominations Report and Nominee Bios

Nominations Report for Affirm United/S’affirmer Ensemble (AUSE) Annual General Meeting July 25, 2020

Presented by:  Cindy Bourgeois and Linda Hutchinson, Nominations Committee

Affirm United/S’affirmer Ensemble’s By-laws giving details of Board (AUSE Council) Structure and Election of Directors is found at:


Positions for Co-Chair and Members at Large were advertised via social media, the Affirm United/S’affirmer website, and personal contact.  Many thanks to Julian Munro, Council Member, and Jordan Sullivan, GCO staff support, for doing the advertising and collection of data from nominees.  Thank you, also, to Michele Petick, Communications Coordinator for AUSE, for composing the short bios for all nominees which are attached to this report.

The slate of Directors for the Board (AUSE Council Members) is listed below.  Continuing Council members are shown in lower case format and nominees shown in UPPER CASE FORMAT.   According to the By-laws, one term of office is three years and the council should be retiring four members each year.  Terms of office are shown in the chart of Council members and nominees.