Staff

Rev. Jonathan Schmidt
Associate Secretary, Intercultural Leadership and Learning; Justice and Peace

Rev. Jonathan Schmidt is the Director of the Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning, a reference group of the Canadian Council of Churches. Prior he was the director of the Canadian Churches Forum for Global Ministries beginning in 2005. He brings to the work gifts as a facilitator and designer of experiential adult learning, and many years of experience in ecumenical settings. His areas of expertise include intercultural ministry, justice, anti-racism and privilege, missiology, and overseas cross-cultural travel and relationship.

A White Canadian, he grew up in Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto. Since then he has lived in Kitchener (Ontario), El Salvador, Cleveland, Albuquerque (New Mexico) and Scarborough. Ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, he has served in Parish, Campus, and Ecumenical Ministries—with breaks for things like parenting and running a Central American restaurant. His work, research, life, and facilitation experience have led to engaging others in learning in theology, social analysis, history, culture, race, and power. He is enrolled in the thesis stage of the Doctor of Ministry program at the Toronto School of Theology. Jonathan is married to Alice Schuda and has two teenage children, Martin and Maya. Outside of work, his interests include parenting, community activism, cycling, and house renovations. His ancestors were Lutheran Missionaries to the USA in the 1800’s.

 

Dr. Mary Marrocco
Associate Secretary, Commission on Faith and Witness

Mary has been with the CCC since 2001. Her main role is to provide staff support for the Commission on Faith and Witness and its various sub-committees. Mary has a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Patristic Theology from St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto.

Mary is also a Registered Marriage and Family Therapist (RMFT), which she feels is complementary to her ecumenical work as a ministry of healing and reconciliation. She is also passionate about theological reflection and is a gifted writer. Her column, “Questioning Faith,” appears in the Catholic Register and Prairie Messenger.

 

Maria Simakova - CFW coordinator - bio pic

Maria Simakova
Coordinator, Commission on Faith and Witness

Maria has been with the CCC since the fall of 2014. Her main role is to coordinate the CCC’s flagship program, the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (WPCU). She also assists the Associate Secretary for the Commission on Faith and Witness, including facilitating the work of the Christian Interfaith Reference Group.

Maria is a PhD candidate at the Toronto School of Theology, majoring in Systematic Theology. She holds a Master of Arts (MA) in Theology from St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary in New York City. She is passionate about Christian ecumenism and seeing theological reflection at work in the context of ecumenical dialogue.

 

Kaeli Sweigard
Communications Officer

Kaeli completed her Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology at York University in Toronto and proceeded to study at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM). While at CCNM, she published articles on electronic media addiction and other topics. She also worked as Research Assistant on several textbooks at CCNM Press, and traveled to Haïti to volunteer in various clinics. Recently, she has studied Front-End Web Development and is developing her knowledge of various programming languages. She also spent time in Zambia completing the World Council of Churches’ Ecumenical School on Governance, Economics and Management. Prior to joining the Canadian Council of Churches, she worked with the East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy in Oakland, California. In her free time, Kaeli enjoys practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and yoga.

 

Headshot of Peter Noteboom smiling

Mr. Peter Noteboom
Acting General Secretary

A believer in a better world, Peter’s life work has been to build peace, one step, one relationship, at a time. As a program leader, community organizer and learning facilitator, he knows how important it is for people to participate, join in the process of change, and make decisions together.

Peter has two decades of experience working with Canadian churches on issues of justice and peace, faith and life sciences, healthcare, undoing racism in Canada, human trafficking, sexual exploitation, peace and disarmament. He knows how to navigate differences and build unity in ecumenical and interfaith settings.

Similarly, Peter has over two decades of experience working as a consultant with a wide variety of civil society organizations on strategic planning, monitoring and evaluation, community engagement practices, teamwork and program planning. He knows how to design opportunities for dialogue and shared learning that leads to effective action and change.

Peter has volunteered in leadership roles on the Boards of a wide variety of churches and non-governmental organizations.

He has a post-graduate diploma on Dialogue and Negotiation from Simon Fraser University, has done post-graduate studies on Christian Political Theory at the Institute for Christian Studies, has a Master of Arts degree in European Studies from the Catholic University of Leuven, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and business administration from Dordt College, Iowa.

The Canadian Council of Churches - Le Conseil Canadien Des Églises

47 Queen's Park Crescent East
Toronto, ON
M5S 2C3

www.councilofchurches.ca

T: 416.972.9494
TF: 1.866.822.7645

info@councilofchurches.ca

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