Christine Samuel receives 2023 Chris Vais Community Award
Knox College is pleased to announce that Christine Samuel is this year’s Chris Vais Community Award recipient. Christine, who is completing the Master of Divinity degree at Knox, also served on the Mission & Theology (M&T) Executive Committee.
Knox College Principal Ernest van Eck announced this year’s Chris Vais Award recipient on April 4, at the College’s final Community Worship service of the 2022-2023 academic year.
The Chris Vais Community Award is presented to a theological student in his/her graduating year who has contributed to the Knox Community in an exceptional way by having a pastoral and community-building influence on the College. Knox’s faculty, staff, and students elect each year’s recipient.
“Christine has been a faithful and enthusiastic member of the Knox Community,” said the Rev. Dr. Sarah Travis, Christine’s faculty advisor. “Her gentle spirit and deep sense of God’s presence have guided her studies and her engagement with the community. Always encouraging others, she has worked to build the capacity of the M&T to provide support to students. I am personally grateful for the ways that her faith is brought to life in every word and action.”
The Chris Vais Community Award was established in 2002, in memory of the Rev. Dr. Chris Vais, by classmates who graduated with him from Knox in 1987. Each year Vais’s family and friends honour his memory by making a financial donation to this award.
Vais served on the Mission & Theology Society Executive Committee, sang in the Knox College Choir, and participated fully in both resident and academic life. He was known to be generous in spirit, with a deep reservoir of compassion and great gifts of hospitality and welcome.
Ten years after graduating from Knox, in January 1997, he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); he died just five years later, at age 39. Before Vais’s death, Knox conferred on him an honourary Doctor of Divinity degree, in recognition of his outstanding leadership even at such a young age.
Knox is grateful to the donors who faithfully give each year to make this award possible.