Wesley will soon approve an appointment for Rev. Dr. Zakaria Mandara. He will be joining us on May 1st on a full time basis.

In the meantime we have asked Rev. Tiina Côté to provide some direction for Wesley on a 1/4 time basis. Below is a brief bio for Tiina. At Wesley we are pleased to have Tiina join our staff and welcome her with enthusiasm. Tiina will still be with us until the end of June.


Tiina was born and raised in Welland, Ontario (Niagara Peninsula) to post-war Immigrant parents. She graduated from the University of Toronto in 1976 with a Double Major in Sociology and Urban Studies which took her to her first career as an Urban Planner, specializing in Neighbourhood Redevelopment. That is where she fell in love with developing inclusive communities.

Marriage and 2 children came along in the 1980s and Tiina decided to stay home to raise the children and learn the art of organic gardening.

But God called Tiina into United Church ministry in the mid- 1990s. Starting first as a staff associate focused on Family Ministry and Community Outreach, Tiina then started on a part-time Masters of Christian Education Degree at Emmanuel College. Nearing the end of those studies, God nudged again. After some discernment, Tiina shifted to the Masters of Divinity and completed all her studies in 2006.

Tiina was one of 2 students selected to go for an overseas internship that year. Her ministry with 2 Methodist congregations in Barbados opened another world of understanding of the effects of post-colonialism. Her ministry there was focused on teaching a select group of young adults about Faith Based Community Ministry.

Ordination followed in 2007 and Tiina was settled in the Hamilton area with a small rural congregation part-time and a large urban congregation part-time. Revisioning and revitalization of ministry outside the walls of church buildings was central.

Then God called again in the early spring of 2011. After much discernment, Tiina left for Tanzania to be a Chaplain in Tanzania with the Christian Council of Tanzania, one of the longest standing partnership with the United Church of Canada. Returning back to Canada in 2013, Tiina worked in a downtown church caught in the cycles of lament and visioning for a new tomorrow. Having helped the congregation to conclude a 17 year process and move into a new beginning, God nudged Tiina and Calvin called. Pembroke is now home and the water and trees and people fuel ministry needs in this faith community.

Editor's Note: Click here to link to Tiina's blog site from her time in Tanzania.