Reverend Canon Samuel Mortimer Ward, IV

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Reverend Canon S. Mortimer Ward, IV died Thursday, July 28, 2022. He was born in New York City in 1937 on the Feast of Saint Michael and All Angels. He graduated from Windsor Mountain School and received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Heidelberg with a major in psychology and a master’s degree in theology from Church Divinity School of the Pacific. He married Diane Korosy in 1960 and they had two children, Christopher and Samantha.

A Benedictine colleague, Canon Ward has served nineteen congregations as vicar, rector or acting pastor as well as many others as a diocesan transition specialist. Among other positions in the church, he has served on the Diocesan Council, served as Diocesan Facilitator of Fresh Start, faculty member of ETS Claremont, Secretary of the Eight Province Commission on Indian Labor, Chairman of Music Commissions and Liturgy for the Dioceses of San Diego and Los Angeles and served as Worship Coordinator. for two General Conventions of the Episcopal Church.

As a Career Transition Specialist in the Interim Ministry Network, he has served on the Faculty, Accreditation Committee, Transition Consultant Peer Review Committee, Professional Development Committee, Council administration and has contributed to two IMN manuals.

A retired volunteer firefighter, he served the American Red Cross as an instructor, disaster action team member, emergency medical technician, board-certified crisis chaplain, Disaster Mental Health, Spiritual Care Advisor for Central California Region, Armed Forces Services. Chapter Leader and received the Clara Barton Award for Meritorious Volunteer Leadership. In 2013, he was appointed to the board of the Institute for Congregational Trauma and Growth.

Mort is survived by his wife of 41 years, Alessandra Ward, children Christopher, Samantha, Taylor and Alexander and seven grandchildren.

He will be remembered not only for his ministries, but also for his epic eyebrows, his warm laugh and a terrific sense of humor that showed up especially with his family and friends. Canon Mort loved learning, teaching, all kinds of animals, good liturgy and music. His favorite hymn was “Christ the Fair Glory” which he had congregations sing because it encapsulated his theology of prayer while getting people to stretch their vocal range a bit.

The date of a memorial service will be announced at a later date.

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