The Word Guild To Honour Outstanding Canadian

World-Renowned Canadian Author, Philosopher, Theologian, and Humanitarian Jean Vanier to Receive 2012 Leslie K. Tarr Award for Career Achievement

TORONTO—On June 13 The Word Guild will present the twenty-fourth annual Leslie K. Tarr Award to Jean Vanier, 83, the son of Canada’s 19th Governor General, Major General Georges P. Vanier, and a Companion of the Order of Canada.

Named in honour of its first recipient, the late Leslie K. Tarr—a journalist, editor, and teacher—the award celebrates a major career contribution to Christian writing and publishing in Canada. Previous recipients include award-winning children's author Jean Little, two-time Governor General's Literary Award winner Rudy Wiebe, Janette Oke, whose inspirational novels have sold more than 28 million copies, and theologian J. I. Packer.

The award will recognize Vanier’s lifetime of work as a Christian author, humanitarian, theologian and world leader in affirming the value, dignity, and giftedness of men and women the world over who live with developmental disabilities.

Described by his friends first and foremost as a man with heart, Vanier is best known for his founding of L’Arche, self-described as, “…an international organization of faith-based communities creating homes and day programs with people who have developmental disabilities.”

A prolific author, Vanier has authored or co-authored more than 30 books, published between 1971 and 2008. A number of these books have had worldwide influence, including Becoming Human published in 1999.

Vanier’s works reveal the heart of a man drawn by compassion and his love for Jesus, reaching out to an often forgotten world, to people who feel isolated and who need community. Though they live with intellectual challenges, Vanier embraces them as having much to offer the wider human family, not only in their giftedness, but also in the gift of themselves.

The Leslie K. Tarr Award is sponsored by Foundation Distributing Inc. and administered by The Word Guild. It will be presented on Wednesday, June 13, during The Word Guild awards gala at the World Vision headquarters, 1 World Drive in Mississauga, Ontario.

During the gala The Word Guild will also present awards in 35 categories—including fiction and non-fiction, poetry, articles, and song lyrics—and the $5,000.00 Grace Irwin Award, Canada’s top literary prize for writers who are Christian. The event, open to the public, starts at 7:30 p.m.

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