Rev. Ed Hoekstra has been Lead Minister at Oakridge Presbyterian Church since November 1, 2011. Prior to coming to London, he served the Presbyterian Church in Canada as a missionary in Blantyre Malawi, Africa, for three years. In this role, Rev. Hoekstra led worship and preached to congregations of up to 4,000 persons, and baptized up to 30 persons at the same time. Pastor Ed was also involved in Prison Ministry in Malawi as Associate Chaplain. Every Tuesday morning, he led a Bible Study to more than 100 men inside the Prison. He has also served as the minister at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Coldwater, from 1999-2008. Before his graduation from Knox College and his Ordination in 1999, he was a small business owner and a secondary school music teacher in Toronto.
Ed also has an interest and experience in farming and when asked by his grandchildren what is his favourite animal, he consistently says ‘a cow’.
Ed is married to Jackie and they are parents of two daughters, three sons, and Grandparents to two boys and a girl.
Jeff Hopkins was born and raised in London and began his faith journey right here at Oakridge Presbyterian church at a young age. After receiving God’s call on his life as a teenager to become a youth pastor, he continued on his path and attended Emmanuel Bible College in Kitchener.
Jeff graduated in 2009 with a Bachelors’ degree in Theology specializing in youth ministry. He has served in youth ministry for the past 10 years in various capacities.
He has a desire to see young people begin a personal relationship with Jesus and a passion to share God’s love to all those around him.
He is married to his high school sweetheart, Brittany, and they have two young boys: Charlie and Benjamin.
Pastoral Care & Adult Ministry Volunteer Coordinator
Wilma joined the staff at Oakridge Presbyterian Church on November 1 2016. She was excited to become a member of OPC in 2001 and she quickly got involved in the community as a volunteer as a volunteer on the Board of Managers and in the Bethel Bible study, and then in other capacities: as a Ordained Elder and Session member, as a Pastoral Care Visitor, as Chair of the Fellowship and Service Committee, in small group studies and on social committees for larger events.
In 2010 Wilma felt called to go back to school full-time to study theology and she graduated from Huron University College at UWO in 2013 with a Master of Divinity. She continued to take courses as time allowed: Clinical Pastoral Education, Greek, and Couple & Family Dynamics.
After her graduation Wilma enjoyed three years of leading worship services on a regular basis in neighboring Presbyterian churches. As well, she continues to enjoy leading weekly worship services in retirement residences, including a Bible study in one of them.
Wilma is the mother of three sons who are married and she has 7 grandchildren – she loves spending time with all of them! … and with friends, neighbours, other family, other people, and with the Lord. She finds joy in all of these relationships.
Her passion is to be engaged in the building and nurturing of relationships with the Lord and with people.
Sonia joined the OPC staff in April 2009. She gives leadership to our children from birth to grade five, including Kids Ministry, Camps and various family activities throughout the year. Once a month she takes on the persona of the Mad Scientist bringing Bible stories to life using science.
She graduated from Sheridan College with a Diploma in Classical Animation and has been known to animate a lesson or two. She is currently studying M.Div at Huron University College. Sonia is married to Chris. They have two children Connor and Giuliana.
“Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them –not because you must, but because you are willing; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve.” 1 Peter 5:2
David, along with wife Anca and their 5 children, ages 7 to 20, began to serve at Oakridge since October 2014.
Dave and his family served for the past 5 years at Melrose United, Hamilton, preceded by 5 years at Knox Presbyterian in Dundas.
He began musical instruction at a young age and was appointed Music Director of the 9:30 a.m services at his home church, Hopedale Presbyterian, Oakville, at 13. He became an active member of the Musician`s Guild at 16 and was appointed Music Director at Walton United, Oakville at 17. He directed a senior public school instrumental music pilot program while in grades 12 and 13 and following graduation began working as a fine arts long term supply teacher for the Halton Board of Education.
During the 1980`s, Dave designing and operating Canada`s first digital multi-track recording studio, Studio Depot. At the same time, he initiated the West Lincoln Conservatory, soon to be joined by Anca, (at the time an R.N. serving at Hamilton General Hospital) and as a co-directors, oversaw an average of 170 music students weekly for over 27 years. During this period of time he also worked as a commercial contract composer and arranger, including writing music for children`s television national network programming. At their studio in Grimsby, Dave also produced a number of programs for cable television. Through much of the 90s, He and Anca also ran a Musical Rod-puppet Theatre and operated a weekly Saturday night Christian coffee house.
In 1999, following a strong sense of being called to serve significantly in the ministry of music within a church community, Dave and his family began to designate a significant portion of their time in this way, which they have continued since. Dave has received instruction from a number of noted teachers, including 4 years with long-time Duke Ellington arrangement consultant Gordon Delamont, and also with Mildred Leach, Thomas Whittet, Jim Howard and Cornelius Rodert. He played trumpet and piano in the Mohawk College Jazz Band for close to 5 years. He credits much of his education to the many people he has been blessed to work with and those he has taught.
Dave has written a number of studies for solo instruments, as well as choral music and over 10 musicals, oratorios and operettas, including `Promised Land`, featured in the Presbyterian Record. He wrote `Get the Bean`, a song promoting fair trade coffee that won the first prize in the Presbyterian Record`s national `Mocha Mission` contest, and you can hear some of his songs on the Record`s website. Dave’s family music website is OrbitFriendly.com
Along with Anca and his five children, Dave feels blessed to now be serving here at Oakridge.
Susan graduated with M.Div from Pacific Theological Seminary and was ordained in the U.S. in 2007. She also graduated from the University of the Nations. She worked for 12 years at OPC until she retired in 2015. Then, she came back again since February 2017. She lives with her husband, Ian, and has a son, Stephen, a daughter, Esther, and four grandchildren.
"You then, my child, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus; and what you have heard from me through many witnesses entrust to faithful people who will be able to teach others as well." 2 Timothy 2:1
"I have said this to you, so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!" John 16:33
Lawrence was born in Malta and came to Canada when he was a child. He has been working at OPC for more than 15 years doing cleaning, set ups and maintenance. He has been in the cleaning business for over 40 years.
Lawrence is one of the youth leaders on Friday nights.
He is married to Karen, has two sons, Tyson and Joshua and a family dog, Sophie.