The Hon. Henry N. R. Jackman, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario
SEASONS GREETINGS FROM THE LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR AND A PERFORMANCE BY THE NIAGARA BRASS ENSEMBLE
Introduction: John F. Bankes
President, The Empire Club of Canada
"And let us not be weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."
St. Paul's letter to the Galations 6:9
May it please Your Honour:
The calendar year is telescoping to an end. Soon, 1991 will have left the room; it will shortly become just another collectible!
1991 has been a year of dramatic change and challenge. Somebody, clearly, has pushed the fast-forward button on history! Who would have thought 12 months ago that the Soviet Union, as we have known it, would no longer exist? Who would have thought that Arabs and Israelis in the Middle East would sit down to discuss ways of forging a permanent peace? Who would have thought that we would have seen democracy and freedom sweep the globe so dramatically? And who would have thought that we would witness apartheid racing toward extinction?
According to U.S. President Bush: "In 1991, the impossible became history." The proclamation: Peace on earth and good will to all, rings true as seldom in history. Takes your breath away!
And yet it's hard to remember another Christmas so dominated by the spirit of Scrooge and the din of Marley's ghost clanking its chains in every corner of Canada. With the passage of time, the lot of Canadians seems to be diminishing. You can read it in the unemployment numbers, and sense it in a general reluctance of people to spend money. In many cases, the pockets of Canadians are empty; they possess more will than wallet! Uncertainty, and, increasingly, real fear, flicker in people's eyes. We are somehow afraid to partake of holiday cheer. No one knows what will happen next; and that takes your spirit away.
Yes, economic growth has been limping along for several years. But Canadians' biggest problem is that we've talked ourselves into a funk. Some commentators have used the acronym FUD--fear, uncertainty and doubt.
This pessimism, in my view, blinds us to the hope around us. The challenge is for Canadians to fan the flames of belief in ourselves as we overcome hard economic and political times at home and build a foundation for lasting prosperity.
Volunteerism can play an important strategic role in helping to solve serious societal problems and to build this foundation. Happily, the thousand-points-of-light brigade can begin to illuminate the darkness left by several years of recession and economic hardship. Each day, we can light the darkness by helping someone in need, working to see that no elderly person goes to bed hungry, that no homeless person spends another night shivering on the streets, that no child sits alone, unloved, unknown.
The volunteer organizations in society can help us overcome a narrow self-interest--that, in the end, will make us poorer not only in spirit but in wealth as well--and rid ourselves of the delusion that we float in many separate boats as opposed to this big Canadian canoe.
At The Empire Club head table today, we have leaders from the volunteer community including representatives from The Lung Association, Ontario March of Dimes, Heart and Stroke Foundation, UNICEF Ontario, The Empire Club Foundation, Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, The Salvation Army and St. John Ambulance. These are the people who provide the oxygen needed to fuel volunteer work and help spread its benefits throughout Canadian society.
In concluding, I encourage all Canadians to adopt the positive approach of these volunteer leaders. For all the visions of past and future, surely dourness will not in the end prevail. After all, even Scrooge awoke Christmas morning a new and restored man! Members and guests of The Empire Club, may your Christmas be bright with love. God bless you.
It is my pleasant task to call upon His Honour, the Honourable Henry N. R. Jackman, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, to address this meeting. Before doing so, a few words of introduction.
One week ago today, His Honour was installed as Her Majesty the Queen's representative in the Province of Ontario. This very great honour is an important milestone in a career of distinguished accomplishments in the fields of business, the arts, politics, and the militia.
Rather than recite His Honour's long list of achievements, I want to draw from the extensive resume his contributions and commitments to volunteer organizations in Canada. This is in keeping with the volunteerism theme of this Empire Club Christmas luncheon meeting. At the risk of missing a few, let me begin:
President, The Canadian Opera Company (1984-86), The Ballet Opera House (1986-89)
Chairman, Atlantic Council of Canada
Chairman of the Advisory Board, The Toronto Old Aged Men's and Women's Homes
Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Canadian Red Cross Pension Fund
Founding Chairman, Regent Park Community Health Centre
Vice President and Member of the National Committee, The Canadian Institute of International Affairs
Vice President, Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research Honourary Treasurer and Director, Stratford Shakespearean Festival Foundation of Canada
Director, Institute for Research on Public Policy, Canadian Institute for Strategic Studies, Ontario Heritage Foundation Trustee, Toronto Western Hospital, Art Gallery of Ontario Member of the Board of Governors, York University, Shaw Festival, St. Andrew's College, Upper Canada College
Member of the Metropolitan Toronto Advisory Board, The Salvation Army
Member of the Ontario Finance and Investment Committees, Order of St. John
Member of the Board of Stewards, Metropolitan United Church
And, of particular importance to this meeting, Past President of The Empire Club of Canada (1971-72) and a Vice Chairman of The Empire Club Foundation.
We are all delighted, Your Honour, that you would attend this Empire Club Christmas luncheon meeting so early in your term. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Lieutenant Colonel The Honourable Henry N. R. Jackman, Ontario's 25th Lieutenant Governor.
Henry N. R. Jackman
As representative of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the province of Ontario, it gives me great pleasure to extend warm season's greetings and best wishes for the new year to the officers and members of The Empire Club of Canada.
I would like to take this opportunity to extend to all of the members of The Empire Club and indeed the citizens of Ontario, my very sincerest best wishes for a peaceful and joyous festive season and a new year filled with prosperity, happiness and good will.
As we look ahead to the challenges of a new year, may we continue to nurture and enhance the timeless qualities of tolerance, caring and sharing throughout the coming year.
With warmest best wishes and greetings of the season.
John F. Bankes:
Members and guests of The Empire Club, it gives me great pleasure to introduce the Niagara Brass Ensemble who have generously offered to entertain us at this luncheon meeting. The members of the Niagara Brass Ensemble are:
James Tinsley--Trumpet Timothy White--Trumpet Alec Chiasson--French Horn David Van Dover--Trombone Brent Adams--Tuba
The Niagara Brass Ensemble, which gets its inspiration from the popular Canadian Brass (referred to by Niagara Brass Ensemble members as "Brand X'), plays a wide variety of music including works from the Renaissance and baroque periods, the 20th century, as well as jazz and pop.
One of the Ensemble members has described a brass quintet as being not dissimilar to a basketball team--five guys working towards a common goal. Together as "teammates" for only four years, the Ensemble has enjoyed a number of "fast breaks" including its role in helping launch the recent CBC Radio series Music Around Us.
Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the Niagara Brass Ensemble.
The Niagara Brass Ensemble gave a presentation. The appreciation of the meeting for the exceptional performance was expressed by John MacNaughton, President and CEO, Burns Fry Limited and a Past President of The Empire Club of Canada.