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{diocesan logo} St. John the Compassionate Mission is dedicated to outreach and care for vulnerable individuals and families in Toronto, especially those living in poverty or on the margins – all are welcome!
We’re an apostolate of the Carpatho-Russian Diocese of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, serving under the Omophorion of Metropolitan Gregory of Nyssa (ACROD). (See our history and mission.)

Hours of Service – everyone is welcome!

Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Hours 5 am –
8:30 am
5 am –
6 pm
5 am –
4 pm
5 am –
4 pm
7 am –
2 pm
8:30 am
Breakfast  5 am –
8:30 am
5 am –
8:30 am
5 am –
8:30 am
5 am –
8:30 am
7 am –
9:00 am
 – 5 pm 1:30 pm 1:30 pm  –  –
 –  –  –  – 10 am –
2 pm
Daily Orthodox Church Services in English – see the schedule on our St. Silouan Chapel page.
St. Johns Paska 2024

Vespers of love on the evening of Orthodox Easter . . . the good news was read in seventeen languages!

Father Nicolaie, Holy Week 2024

PaskaFather’s reflections from Holy Week 2024 services are available in ‘ Apophthegmata for a little flock’ (130k PDF)

Image from Ted

St. Johns BakerySt. John’s summer jobs

St. John’s is hiring for two Canada Summer Jobs positions – a baker apprentice at St. John’s Bakery, and a community service worker at the Mission.

Get in touch with us if you are interested.

St. Mary of Egypt RefugeSummer events at St. Mary’s Refuge

St. Mary’s Refuge in Madoc has many events and programs on for this summer – see their web site for details.

Agnes Shehade, House of GraceHaifa’s ‘House of Grace’

The House of Grace was founded by Kamil and Agnes Shehade in 1982, in a Melkite church in Haifa, Israel. Their inspirations included Matthew 25:36 – “I was in prison, and you came to visit me” – and Combermere’s Madonna House. Agnes is shown in the photo at right; her husband Kamil died in 2000.

Roberto Ubertino met the Shehades in 1983, and in turn, House of Grace was part of the inspiration behind the founding of St. John’s Mission in 1986.

Since the start of the Gaza war, we have been in regular contact with them, and try to be a support of friendship to Agnes and the community.

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(Agnes Shehade describes below some of the activities at House of Grace. They deal with many resulting social issues, and their services are well-respected by Israelis and Palestinians.)


Daily life at the House of Grace – It is difficult to talk about a day in House of Grace because every day is different. So, I try to give you an impression. Besides the activities in our Greek-Catholic Church (a weekly Holy Liturgy, sacraments, religious meetings, concerts, and lectures), we have three main projects: support for released prisoners, for families in need, and a program for youth.

Released prisoners – The men are allowed to stay with us for their last third of their sentence. Currently seventeen in number, the men stay for nine months, and are obliged to work outside. A government committee is responsible for them, and makes final decisions. Twice a month, they are allowed to visit with their families for seventy-two hours. Counsellors guide them during nights and weekends they are staying at the house. During a ‘normal’ day, the men get up, make their breakfast, and leave to work. They have to be back at 5 p.m. to shower, eat lunch, and then participate in workshops, sessions, and personal talks with a social worker. Every week, two of them have to prepare lunch for all. Each of them has a duty to fulfill, like cleaning floors, the kitchen, the compound... At 10 p.m., they sit together with the counsellor and make a review of their day. To help them get some rest, they have to turn in their phone for the night.

Needy families – Our social worker receives families and people in need from 8:30 a.m. till 1 p.m., four days a week. They receive counseling, help writing letters to government offices, and help making contacts with all the institutions the social worker is connected with. She prepares a list for food-package delivery, and of the sick needing medication we provide. To get a picture of the situation, she visits families. She also organizes workshops for families and women. A second-hand clothing shop is also part of the family program. Three volunteers are taking care of the shop, receiving and sorting the clothes, receiving people, and preparing the bags of supplies we send out.

Youth program – Our program is open in the afternoon for children of the ages seven through sixteen. Our coordinator organizes workshops, sports, and other activities. Together with some students, he provides tutoring and sometimes talks with the families. Twice a year, they go for a trip. In between, the children go to some activities outside of House of Grace. Due to the war in Gaza, the program is currently limited because of security reasons.

Staff – Jamal, our director, is often responsible for other groups and organizations, and prepares meetings and workshops for the staff. He is often invited to official events and meetings. There are the director of the released-prisoners program, and with him another three social workers and four counsellors. One employee is responsible for the counselors, food distribution, maintenance, and providing all that is needed. We also occupy one social worker for the family program, and a coordinator for the youth program. A resource developer comes twice a week. All our staff workers have different schedules, and arrive at different hours and days. During the day, visitors often come to see the church, and hear about our work. Some people come just to have a chat and a cup of coffee. Every day is different, and we never know exactly how it will turn out. Before, some foreign groups arrived to find out more about House of Grace, but since the war started we receive only local groups.


{St. Maria of Paris Journal of Art and Literature}

The latest edition of the Mission’s arts journal

To see this “St. Maria of Paris Journal of Art and Literature, presented by the Voices of St. John the Compassionate Mission,“ click the image to the right, or this link.

Past editions can be seen from our multimedia page

IF you would like to pitch in on a future issue, contact us at

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Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople
©2024 St. John the Compassionate Mission
416-466-1357 |
155 Broadview Avenue, Toronto M4M 2E9
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American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese of North America