The purpose of the Order of the Diocese of New Westminster is to honour and give special recognition to lay members of the Diocese who have given outstanding service over a significant period of time in their volunteer ministry.
New members of the Order are invested at a special investiture service held every two years, around All Saint's Day. The investiture is intentionally scheduled to occur within the octave of the Feast of All Saints - it is a time when the attention of the church is focused on God's call to each baptized person to exercise our ministries in our daily life and work. Recipients of the award are examples to all of us of what the life of a follower of Jesus looks like - they point us to the saints of God who have shown forth the light of Christ for so many generation. In the words of our Lord Christ, "Let your light so shine before others that all may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)
The insignia for The Order of the Diocese of New Westminster is a round medallion featuring the official badge of the Diocese in full coloured enamel struck by Pressed Metal Products of Vancouver. The badge was granted by the Chief Herald of Canada on May 15th, 2007. The colours and many of the symbols on the badge are derived form the coat of arms of the Diocese, granted more than half a century ago. The colours blue and gold are the main colours in the coat of arms and in the badge represent both heaven, and the sea and the riches of the Spirit. The Christian cross takes the form found on the medieval coat of arms attributed to St Edward the Confessor and long associated with Westminster Abbey. In the badge another symbol of St. Edward, the small birds, are given a Canadian flavour with tails ending in a maple leaf shape, fitting for a Canadian Anglican diocese. The wavy white line symbolizes both the ocean and the river which surround much of the Diocese as well as the waters of baptism. The insignia hangs from a special blue gold and white silk ribbon, designed by two leading experts in Canadian symbols, Dr. Christopher McCreery and Major Carl Gauthier, and woven by the famous English firm of Toye Kenning.