2021 Chancellor’s Scholars Confirmed
The Vancouver School of Theology has named Amanda Ruston and John Snow as the 2021 recipients of the Chancellor’s Scholarship. These scholarships are the most prestigious and generous scholarships offered to VST students each year. They will be officially awarded on November 18, 2021 at the Chancellor’s Dinner.
Mtr Amanda-Magdalene Ruston, OSBCn
Amanda Ruston is an Anglican priest, a professed Benedictine, an artist, and a student at VST. Amanda is starting the final year of the MDiv program this fall, as well as a unit of CPE and a part-time curacy at St. James’ Anglican Church in the DTES of Vancouver.
“I absolutely love being in ministry in the Anglican church, especially serving in the amazing and vibrant neighbourhood of the Downtown Eastside. I feel incredibly grateful to have been called by God to do this work, and to have been formed to do so by the excellent mentors I have had, as well as the education I received through VST. I love theology, liturgy, and the amazing collegial relationships and friendships I get to have through ministry, but when I am not working or studying, I also love reading, spending time in nature, or working on an art project. These past couple years living through a global pandemic have been really hard on all of us – emotionally and financially – and as such, I am deeply thankful for the generous support of the people that make scholarships possible and am especially humbled and honoured to have been selected for the prestigious VST Chancellor’s Scholarship. This will enable me to finish my degree on pace, and to continue my ministry in the Church without undue barriers. I am really excited to see what God does with and through me in the year ahead and am committed to ongoing learning and personal spiritual development, so that I may continue to be faithful and sensitive to God’s voice in my life and in the life of the Church.”
Reverend John Snow Jr., B.Sc., P.M.L.M., M.A.
John is a Traditional Land, Cultural and Environmental Specialist. He belongs to the Stoney Tribe, Treaty 7, Member of ICD., CAPL, CAPLA.
John is an advisor, teacher, contract consultant for Indigenous communities, various colleges, universities, and governments. John is an Indigenous Instructor and Lecturer for Land, Cultural and Environmental Monitoring courses and a lead writer, researcher, and interpreter working amongst Indigenous Elders on multiple resource projects. John has advised many Indigenous organizations throughout the world. He is a specialist on legislative, regulatory, and corporate processes. He holds a Graduate degree in Public Policy, Law and Administration and more recently completed and serves as instructor on Pipeline Monitoring and Operations certifications. His visionary approach has helped to implement innovative solutions to many challenging issues. John is a Reverend with the United Church of Canada, a Nakoda pipe holder, traditional and cultural specialist and assists instruction and advisory roles for diverse organizations.
As a 4th year M.Div. Indigenous Student by Extension at VST I have been grateful for the opportunity and support for my program. I hope to continue my studies in the Ph.D. program when I complete the M. Div., to guide my Indigenous Ministry in the Church, Educational Institutions and in Community. My work in the United Church continues at the regional level and involves Reconciliation, Indigenization and Decolonization. My father began our work with ordination in 1963, in the United Church of Canada and was also a Nakoda pipe holder. His Father before him taught from the Cree Syllabics Bible and was a pipe holder. Following the tradition of my family I have been ordained September 2020 and am also a Nakoda pipe holder. I hold the teachings of Christianity alongside those of my Indigenous Traditional and Cultural Heritage that have served to illuminate Understanding, Hope, Love, Joy, Kindness and Healing.