Please join us in our Prayer for Canada

God our Saviour, we desire to do your will.
Help our Order to plan wisely for our continuing ministry in Canada.
Hear us to discern our path, to find new ways and places to serve, and to live with integrity
so that others will be enabled to share our monastic commitment and values;
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Holy Cross Priory is a monastery of the Order of the Holy Cross, a community founded in 1884 by the Rev. James Otis Sargent Huntington to provide a specifically North American expression of monasticism for Anglicans.

The Priory houses a small community in a Victorian-style home near Toronto’s scenic High Park. Members of the community participate in a daily cycle of prayer, study, and work. We have a number of guest rooms and provide hospitality as well.

Members of the community are available to lead retreats and quiet days at Parishes and other locations. We also offer quiet days, days of prayer, and other programs at the Priory.

The Order has had a ministry in Canada since the 1890′s. Holy Cross Priory was founded in 1973.


Our Brother Christian Swayne has celebrated 60 years as a Priest. He was honoured by The Rt. Rev. Andrew Asbil, Bishop of Toronto, who presented him with a “60 Year Stole” at the Chrism Service at St. James Cathedral. At that time Br. Christian renewed his vows alongside assembled diocesan clergy, including those also honoured for milestones of service. Here is Br. Christian (third from left) with Bishop Asbil, members of the Toronto Priory, and his sister, Patricia Brown, a Companion of the Order of the Holy Cross.



Holy Cross Priory hosted a retreat, led by The Rev Katy Waugh, for the Catechesis Group at Church of the Redeemer, Toronto. From left to right: Heather Steeves and Lynda Younge in conversation.

Nate Wall and Erika Bauder at Lunch

Karen Visser, Chase McMurren and Susan Graham Walker at lunch.



In the Priory’s Easter newsletter, Br. David Bryan writes:

Jesus’ death was not a final reality. After his resurrection Jesus appeared to his disciples, ate with them, and taught them how to be a holy community. All this mitigated against rational, ordered predictability.

The Jesus movement would become the Christian Church. From a small religious sect of Judaism, it evolved into a world religion and power. Sadly, with a rise in status came abuse, exclusivity, arrogance, and injustice. Yet that is not the whole story. Faithful followers of Jesus showed God’s grace in loving acts of healing, education, art, and care for the poor and the marginalized. The Jesus movement continues despite human sin and failures. The Lord comes in wonderful and unpredictable ways. Lives are changed from brokenness to wholeness and the good news of God’s love is carried out in every age.

God’s victory is love, compassion, and integrity. These shall not be annihilated by our sin and folly.



The Rev. Lucy Reid

The Rev. Lucy Reid, Priest in Charge of St. Aidan’s, Church, Toronto, spoke at the recent Lenten Quiet Day co-sponsored by Holy Cross Priory, St. John’s West Toronto, and St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Here is Lucy’s own summary of her presentation:

“The breath prayer is the most simple and effective way I know of quietening the chattering mind or turbulent emotions, and settling into the quiet, spacious presence of God. By focusing first on the physical sensation of the breath entering and leaving, and then silently repeating a very simple one-line prayer to the rhythm of the breathing (such as “Creator [inhale] guide me [exhale],” “Christ have mercy,” “Spirit of love”), you can anchor yourself in prayer any time, anywhere. Our breath is constantly flowing in and out, until we die. So the breath prayer can become more and more part of our daily life, as we inhale the breath/spirit/wind of God and exhale into trust.”



Suzette L CaylessSuzette L. Cayless, Companion of the Order of the Holy Cross

For many years The Order of the Holy Cross has elected as Companions of the Order women and men who have offered exemplary service in support of the Order. Currently there are six Companions, one of whom is Suzette Cayless. We are delighted that she is increasingly a welcome guest at our Priory in Toronto and grateful for the support she offers us while here.

Mrs. Cayless, supported by her late husband, The Rev’d. Canon Tony Cayless, has served our Order in any number of significant ways over decades.

The Caylesses voluntarily acted as hosts at Huntington House — a guest house on the grounds of Holy Cross Monastery, West Park — for seven years. Suzette has served as unpaid Secretary to the Superior, receptionist at Holy Cross Monastery and Editor of both the Superior’s newsletter and the Monastery’s newsletter. She has offered spiritual direction for OHC brothers and guests at Holy Cross Monastery.

Mrs. Cayless continues her generous support of our work here in Toronto. Thank you, Suzette.


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