Honorary Doctorate Recipient 2023
The Board of Governors of The Presbyterian College is pleased to announce that the Doctor of Divinity degree (honoris causa) will be conferred on the Rev. Sybil Mosley at the Spring 2023 Convocation of The Presbyterian College. (May 18, 2023)
The ministry of the Rev. Sybil Mosley has been described in this way: “Sybil brings to pastoral ministry a wealth of previous experience, a deep love for and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and a love for people. She approaches ministry with humility and compassion, with bold courage and indomitable faith. She is passionate, and she is wise in the ways of the Holy Spirit.”
The Rev. Mosley is being recognized in particular for (i) her service in pastoral ministry and (ii) her service to the wider church. Sybil came to ministry as a second career and, following completion of her M.Div. at The Presbyterian College, was appointed to Livingstone Presbyterian Church in 2010 (an aid-receiving congregation at the time). She was reappointed for a second three-year term in 2013 and then became the called minister in 2016. In nominating her, a colleague has offered: “For more than 13 years, Sybil has helped the congregation become faithfully hopeful, practically compassionate towards neighbours, supportive and gracious towards each other, and financially stable.”
In relation to her service to the denomination, it is noteworthy that the Rev. Mosley served as Moderator of The Presbytery of Montreal for three consecutive years, including through the first and very difficult 18 months of the pandemic. She also moderated ably through sometimes difficult discussions and decisions in relation to the Remits relating to marriage and human sexuality. As a nominator has expressed it: “Her moderating style was very gentle and respectful, yet there is a basic firmness in her leadership.”
Most important in all of the above, is Sybil’s commitment to prayer and to leading others into a prayerful approach to ministry. “She is the only person, over the past two decades of the moderatorship, who organized a regular, normally weekly, call to prayer to all members of the court. It is clear that in her own life each important decision is preceded by a time or prayer.” The Rev. Mosley models a prayerful approach to ministry, invites others into such prayerfulness, and prays regularly and meaningfully for colleagues and others in the church. This is a gift and encouragement and challenge to those who serve around her, and represents an approach to ministry that the College wishes to acknowledge and honour.
In responding to this honour, the Rev. Mosley indicates that she accepts it alongside all those, lay and ordained, who have served with her in ministry—it is only with this community of God’s people that she has been able to serve Christ faithfully in the church. Her desire is that all glory be give to God for His faithfulness to his people, and for God’s equipping of us together for service.