from Port Hope United Church Centennial 1875-1975 booklet, and other sources

EARLY DAYS OF METHODISM IN PORT HOPE
The following account, tracing the beginning of Wesleyan Methodism in Port Hope and the surrounding area, was derived almost entirely from a report written by Mr. R. Dickson, Secretary of the Port Hope Methodist Church in March 1877 for the first Anniversary of the opening of the main sanctuary of the new Church.

In the year 1813 Smith's Creek Circuit embraced an area between Myer's Creek (Belleville) and Whitby and settlements in the rear. The minister labouring on the circuit that year was Rev. Thomas Whitehead. Ezra Adams, Thos. Madden, John Rhodes and a few others preached occasionally during the war of 1812-1815.

In 1815 Rev. Nathaniel Reeder followed. Service was generally held in Mrs. Britton's parlour or in a small log house, the only one on the north side of Walton Street at that time, which also served as a school house. On some occasions the preachers held service in Mr. Jacob Choates Sr.'s bar-room or ballroom, near where the Queen's Hotel is now situated.

In 1817 The Revs. Isaac Puffer and Elijah Broadman came. Shortly after, two English local preachers arrived, Messrs. Radcliffe and Woolsingcroft, one residing in Hamilton Township, the other in Haldimand.

In 1818 a Post Office was established, called Toronto, and the following year the town was made a Port of Entry and received its present name, Port Hope.

About this time a class was organized at Mr. Potter's house, Lot 6, Concession 3 of Hope, and in March 1819, a Quarterly Meeting (probably the first ever assembled in the Township) was held in an unfinished house belonging to Mr. James Hawkins, Lot 11, Concession 4 in Hope.

cursor over the face
Near this spot, the new church at Canton now occupies a prominent position.
About the year 1823, another class was organized at Mr. Samuel Gifford's Corners (now Marysville) of which Mr. Jacob Choate Jr. was leader.

In 1824 Rev. Anson Green preached in Port Hope, and about this time a class was formed here with Mr. Alex Davidson as leader. The members of this class were William Hall and wife, Mrs. Healey, Alien Harris and W. Baker.

Port Hope at this time was considered the centre of a large and important circuit. In 1823 the name was changed to the "Cobourg Circuit" and class leaders for succeeding years were as follows:
1825 — D. Breckenridge, John Black
1826 — W. Slater, R. Phelps, J. C. Davidson
1827 — W. Slater, Egerton Ryerson
1828 — J. Norris, Ephriam Evans
1829 — D. Wright, John Carroll

In 1827 a Quarterly Meeting was held in Mr. Jacob Choate's barn, (on the farm later occupied by his son Nathan). It may be here stated that in 1828, Mr. Aaron Choate of Perrytown occasionally took his team and drove to Mr. Hawkins', and then to the Gifford appointment to pick-up the Rev. E. Evans and as many persons as his sleigh would contain (not omitting sufficient fire-wood) and thus drove on to the new school on Protestant Hill for worship — bringing a quarter of the congregation with him.

In the following year, 1829, Port Hope was transferred to the Whitby Circuit, the Revs. R. Corson and C. Vandusen being preachers. The circuit remained in connection with Whitby a few years, when it was re-united to Cobourg.

In 1831, the little band had quite an accession to their strength by the arrival of Mr. Thos. Willcock and wife, Mr. Wm. Barrett, wife and son Richard and Mr. Nicholas Hawken. At this time a class of nine was formed with Mr. Barrett Sr. as leader.

In 1832 Mr. Might and others arrived. Then came Messrs. Richard Howell, Robt. Mitchell and Thomas Benson.

In 1833 the Rev. Richard Jones on the Cobourg Circuit preached occasionally in the school house on Protestant Hill, the roof of which being so bad and leaky, that he was obliged in wet weather, to keep shifting from one side of the desk to the other in order to avoid the dripping water.


from 'The Life and Times of the Rev. Anson Green, DD' 1877
by Rev. Anson Green
This afternoon (Nov. 30th, 1824) by previous arrangement, I delivered what I was informed was the first sermon preached in Port Hope by a Wesleyan minister. I had a shoemaker's shop for my church, his shoe-bench for a pulpit, and six persons for a congregation. Port Hope is the largest village on the circuit. It is situated at the mouth of Smith's Creek, from which our circuit takes its name. It is full of enterprise and spirit, but so full of whiskey and sin that it bears the name of 'Sodom.'

My text was, 'Some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.' The wedge is now entered, and if we can manage to get a congregation, Sodom may yet be redeemed, and by divine help we may hope to do some good.

THE ORIGINAL METHODIST CHURCH BUILDING IN PORT HOPE
The first attempt to build a church was made by Mr. Alex Davidson, a clerk in Mr. David Smart's store. He wrote to persons in different parts of the Province for assistance in the erection of a suitable place of worship. He also wrote in a weekly paper, the Reformer, published in Cobourg by Mr. Radcliffe, showing the great need of a Methodist place of worship in this locality, and the utter inability of the few members and friends of Methodism to meet the expense, and in this way succeeded in securing some help. An application having been made to John David Smith Esq., for a suitable site, that gentleman presented the people with a lot on Brown Street on which to build.


The first Methodist church in Port Hope, erected at the northeast corner of Brown and South streets in 1835, can be seen near the upper-left corner of this photo taken in 1861/62. An eighteen-foot extension had been added to the east side of the church in 1859/60. To the north on Brown Street is the Presbyterian Kirk, St Andrew's, built in 1860, sold in 1872 and torn down c1900. It was used as the first Port Hope High School building from 1873 till 1886. The approach to Jacob's Ladder is in the foreground, just this side of the small structure that occupies a spot near where the Land Registry building, now the Port Hope Archives, was erected in 1871. The Mill Street Presbyterian Church, the present day Skeena, opened in 1863 in the vacant area between the small structure and the grain warehouse that was still standing there in 1904.
Click here to enlarge photo.

Arrangements were at once made for building. The deed bears date December 21, 1833 and the Trustees named therein are William Barrett Sr., Richard Howell, John Might, Thos. Benson, Robt. Mitchell, Richard Barrett and Alexander Davidson. The contractors were Robert Mitchell and Philip Fox. The edifice was erected and dedicated to the service of God August 11, 1835. Rev. Jones left in 1834 before the Church was built, but returned, as Chairman of the District, ten years later, to find a neat little church and a good congregation, which steadily increased until the house could not contain it.

From 1832 to 1840 a number of ministers stationed on the Cobourg Circuit officiated in Port Hope — Revs. R. Jones, Davidson, Bevitt, Davis and Bigger. As yet Port Hope stood in connection with the Cobourg Circuit and continued in that connection until 1840, when its independent Circuit existence commenced.

The congregation continued to increase and before long it was found that the little Church was too small. Arrangements were made for some enlargement, but within a few years the building again was insufficient to accommodate the congregation, and a further enlargement became necessary. This time it was decided that, as the building could not very well be lengthened, it might be widened, and a plan was prepared to add eighteen feet to the east side, thus affording room for fifty additional pews. On March 26, 1859 a subscription paper was written, and a canvass made; but it was not very successful — the result being $115 in material and labour and $15 in cash. The Trustees decided, nevertheless, to borrow money and proceed with the work, and made a contract with Mr. Bennett Janes for the enlargement.

The old pulpit was removed and given to a church in Haldimand, and a new one erected. New fences were built around the lot, and a new wood shed built. Hot air heating and gas were introduced and the Church painted inside and out, the total renovations costing $1,600.

By the time the Church was clear of debt the congregation had again increased to such an extent that more accommodation was required, but there did not seem any place to which a further addition could be made.

The Church inside looked remarkably well, but outside it was an object, if not of admiration, at least of curiosity. By adding eighteen feet to one side of the Church, the tower, originally in the front centre, had been left close to the corner, and with a short roof on one side, a long one on the other, and a projection in the rear, it could not be said that the style was ancient or modern. The building had been altered so often that the original shape was lost. It looked neither like a Church nor a barn. The design was certainly original. Nevertheless there are noble and grand associations connected with that old Church.

About 7 o'clock in the morning, August 26, 1874, the town fire alarm was sounded. Firemen, with their engines, hooks and ladders and chemical engine nobly fought the flames, but in vain. In a few hours the old Church was consumed and the Parsonage alone escaped destruction. Despite the heroic efforts of the firemen, ably assisted by the citizens, ere noon arrived, the old Church was a thing of the past.

Several years before the destruction of the old Church, it had been realized by the Wesleyan Methodists of Port Hope, that their congregation was fast outgrowing the capacity of the original building. They were determined to build a larger and more handsome edifice which would be at the same time more in accordance with modern ideas and capable of affording all the necessary conveniences for holding regular services, Sunday school, prayer meetings, business meetings, and other Church functions.
In 1870 a committee had recommended that a lot on Brown Street, belonging to John Shuter Smith Esq., be purchased.
The report of this committee was received and adopted, and Messrs. Trick and W. Carveth were appointed to examine the site and test for a foundation.

On April 19, 1870 a resolution was adopted by the Trustee Board that the lot be purchased, provided the congregation approved. At a meeting called for that purpose on April 26, the following resolution was unanimously adopted:
"That the action of the Trustee Board in selecting Mr. Smith's lot be approved."

A committee of the Trustees purchased the lot on September 6, 1870 for the sum of $1,600.00. Two lots were subsequently purchased, one on the west side for $425.00 and one on the north side for $360.00.

On March 26, 1873 the Board was increased from seven to fifteen members, and frequently met to discuss the subject of building.
The building of two churches, one in the east and one in the west part of town, was at this time frequently discussed. After carefully considering and discussing the whole subject, a meeting of Trustees was held on August 22, 1873 and the following resolution was unanimously adopted :-
"Resolved — That we agree to build one Central Church".
A motion was then passed as follows:-"That in the opinion of this meeting the most eligible location for the new Church is the lot selected and purchased by the Trustees from the late J. S. Smith esq., on the West side of Brown Street and that the Church be built on that lot.

THE CHURCH IS ERECTED
Early in 1874 Smith & Gemmel of Toronto presented the design and specifications for a new Church edifice and a contract for construction was awarded on June 9, 1874 to Mr. J. W. Wallace.

In the construction of the building the following materials were used; 730,000 bricks, 103 tons of Cleveland stone, 166 cords of Kingston limestone, 265,000 ft. of lumber and timber and 145,000 shingles. The iron work was cast by R. Nichols and Co., and cost $1,700.00 The building committee appointed Mr. P. R. Randall superintendent in their interests and the work progressed rapidly. On the 2nd of September, 1874, the corner stone was laid by the Rev. Dr. Enoch Wood, President of the Conference, with the usual solemnities.

During erection of the new Church the Music Hall (which was located over the present Royal Bank of Canada) was engaged by the Methodist Congregation of Port Hope for Church services at a rate of $5.00 per day, exclusive of fuel and gas. Religious worship continued there until September 12, 1875. Sabbath school and the usual weekly evening services were held in the Y.M.C.A. hall which was engaged for that purpose.

On September 12, 1875 the Sunday school room was dedicated by the pastor of the church, Rev. E. B. Harper, M.A., and the Rev. Dr. Nelles of Cobourg and from that date until March 1876 public services were held in that portion of the church.

The main building was completed and officially opened on Thursday evening, March 2, 1876 by Rev. B. I. Ives of Auburn N.Y.

The audience was the largest ever brought together in one building in Port Hope, numbering at least 1500 people. The magnificent chamber presented a grand appearance when lighted up, with such a large concourse of our citizens assembled in it. Every denomination in town was represented and in true evangelical spirit, members of other Christian bodies seemed equally gratified with their Methodist friends on the great success of the opening.

About half-past seven Rev. Ives ascended to the pulpit and announced a hymn. This was followed by scripture reading and a prayer in which he fervently invoked the Divine aid upon the services of the evening and the general welfare of the Church. Rev. Ives then preached a very eloquent sermon from the words "The Glorious Gospel of Christ" found in St. Paul's second epistle to the Corinthians.

After the discourse the Reverend gentleman alluded to the beautiful church they were opening, which was so soon to be dedicated to the service of God. He referred to the debt on the building and spoke of the great drawback it was to any church to be labouring under such a load and how it retarded its growth and efficiency. What a glorious thing it would be to offer this beautiful temple to God, untrammeled with any debt. It might seem to them an astonishing thing, he said, and to some an utter impossibility, but he proposed to raise subscriptions to cover the $22,000 debt that night. This announcement was received with a chorus of incredulous laughter by the people assembled. Rev. Ives then said the thing could be done and he had a method drawn up by which it could be accomplished. He said he knew there were a number of men in the congregation who could give a subscription of $1,000, especially as every contributor would have five years in which to pay the amount subscribed. Now, he wanted ten men to give $1,000 each. If anyone had been asked during the day if there was a member of that congregation who would give a $1000 subscription, the answer would have been "no;" but nine men did come forward and put down their names for $1000 each. The Ladies Aid agreed to raise another $1000.

Rev. Ives then went on lowering the subscription to $500, then $200, $100, $50 and finally $25 getting large numbers at each. When the total was added up, it showed nearly $27,000, considerably over what was required. Everyone present was astonished at the result and the donors were congratulated for their truly wonderful response.

On Sunday morning, March 5, Rev. Enoch Wood formally dedicated the church to the worship of God.

The March 1, 1876 issue of the Port Hope Guide contained a detailed description of the Church building:
The whole building is unusual in style. The main building and the Sunday School room are separated to all intents and purposes, having each a separate roof. A hall connects them, from which are the entrances to the school and classrooms and also the rear entrances, four in number, into the church proper. There are also two entrances into the organ loft.

The length of the double edifice is 133 ft. There are two spires, one in each corner in front. The highest one is 186 ft. and the other upon the west corner 100 ft. high. The height to the peak of the roof is 78ft. The front entrances are through these towers, with winding staircases leading to the gallery.

The main auditorium is 80 ft. wide and 73 ft. long. The ceiling averages 32ft. in height. The seats are arranged in somewhat amphitheatrical form, being placed in a half circle around the pulpit, upon a floor inclined from front to rear. The gallery encircles three sides of the audience hall, the seats being raised in a manner which gives those sitting in the rear seats as good a view as those in the front seats.

Port Hope Methodist Church painted by Frederick Banting - 1920s
The seating accommodation is capable of considerable extension by means of fold away seats which may be drawn from the ends of the stationary pews and each will accommodate one person. The pew ends are of iron painted in green and bronze surmounted by an arm rest of upholstery-work in crimson repp. The seat cushions are also of crimson repp. Mr. J. T. George received the contract for the upholstery and fulfilled his contract in a commendable manner.

The seats are of pine, varnished so as to show the natural colour of the wood. On the top is a roll of walnut and on the back of each is a spacious book rack. Besides being comfortable, the seats present a very handsome appearance.

The aisles converge toward the centre and are sufficiently wide to admit two people walking abreast. The front of the gallery is protected by open iron work painted the same as the pew ends and surmounted by a roll of walnut.

The pulpit is in the centre of the north side. It stands on the lowest part of the floor and is made of pine and varnished only.

In front is a handsome communion rail, supported by iron work of a plain pattern painted to accord with the rest of the iron work, including the iron pillars which support the front of the gallery.

The pulpit is open and quite modern in style. Above and extending backwards is the organ loft capable of holding 20 persons, in addition to the organ.

A white marble octagonal baptismal font and pedestal with Gothic panels has been provided. Around the chamber of the bowl are the words "baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost" cut in "early English letters". Within the communion rail is also a marble sacrament table, made by Joseph Hooper.

The organ is of Gothic style with handsome chestnut and walnut facings. The front pipes are gilded and all materials used are of the best description and the workmanship of the highest class. The compass of the manuals is 56 notes and of the pedals 27 notes. The organ is divided into the great organ, small organ and pedal organ with comprehensive mechanical registers and pedal movements. In the great organ are 558 notes and 52 feet of pipe. In the small organ there are 368 notes and 36 feet of pipe and in the pedal organ 27 notes and 16 feet of pipe. Prof. Smith, an English organist, will have charge of the organ and with the able choir will produce great music.

The ceiling is handsomely panelled. It is pure white as are the walls. There are four large stained glass windows on each side and a large one being reversible. The Sunday School scholars provided for most of the room's furnishings. Its dimensions are 75 feet long by 45 feet wide. The ceiling is 23 feet high, and is arched with open timber work. Rafters and beams show below the plaster and are sustained by heavy brackets resting on turned corbels. The ceiling is finished with heavy wood cornices and bead and chamfered work. In front and lighting the platform is a beautiful rose window of stained glass. There are also two additional windows in front, four on the south side and three at the end. The room is lighted by two gas pendants suspended on brackets. This room has been pronounced one of the best school rooms in connection with any church in the Dominion.

The lecture room is underneath the school room. It is 38 by 40 feet and is intended primarily for business meetings in connection with the church. It is finished to correspond with the rest of the church. This room also contains the Sunday School library. At each end are three classrooms 18 feet by 13½ feet. One of these is the Minister's vestry.

The bell which is hung in the east tower is a large one from the Troy N.Y. bell foundry and weighs 1378 Ibs. It was provided by subscription solicited by H. G. Taylor and J. P. Clemes and cost $494.00.

The contractor, Mr. W. J. Wallace, is deserving of much praise for the manner in which he has executed his contract and although an extension of time has been taken up, the quality of work fully compensated for the unavoidable delay. Mr. R. P. Randall on behalf of the committee has been indefatigable in the prosecution of his work and has earned the thanks of the congregation for the intelligent manner in which he has superintended the work. The Sabbath School children, by their monthly contributions, have supplied much material for which they are deserving of honourable mention.

The Northumberland and Durham Atlas of 1878 gave the following account of the new edifice
"The new Methodist church is incomparably the finest ecclesiastical edifice in Port Hope. It is situated on the corner of Brown and South Sts., fronting on the latter. It was opened in March 1876 and its entire cost was not much under $50,000.00. It has seating capacity for 1500 people and both externally and internally it reflects credit upon the taste and enterprise of the body who worship within its walls."

Cast of a play performed at the Methodist Church c1914
Thanks to Cal Clayton, Helen (Watson) Fulford and Don Douglas.
Cursor over or tap a face to see name., Click here to enlarge photo.


THE UNITED CHURCH OF CANADA; PRODUCT OF CHURCH UNION
June 10, 1925 marked the consummation of the union of the Methodist, Congregational and a large part of the Presbyterian churches in Canada to form the United Church of Canada with 8,000 congregations and 600,000 communicant members. The thrust toward union was both spiritual and practical. "That all may be one" was the goal of many who were distressed at divisions within the church and longed for a united witness to convince the World of the truth of Christianity. Along side this was the need to minister to scattered communities in our rapidly expanding frontiers of Western Canada and to do it as economically as possible. A United Canada demanded a national United Church.
Various Presbyterian bodies united in 1875 to form the Presbyterian Church in Canada; while following a similar series of unions, 16 Methodist groups became The Methodist Church in 1884. By 1906 the Congregational Churches were consolidated into the Congregational Union of Canada.

The first invitations to consider church union came from the Anglicans in 1885 in Ontario to the Methodists and Presbyterians. The Anglican Church soon dropped out and the Congregational Church was invited into the discussions.

During the early 1900's while national joint union committees were working and the courts of the three churches were talking about the desirability of union, many communities in the west and in northern Ontario were experiencing local unions. The outbreak of war in 1914 resulted in a hold up in union negotiations; however, both the local union movement in the west and opposition in the Presbyterian church continued to grow during these years. By 1921 the local union churches of Western Canada formed their own general council and became another group in the union proceedings, which were culminated in 1925 following appropriate voting and government legislation.

For 50 years the Port Hope United Church has been the largest, most active congregation in the community. Each of the uniting churches brought a great spiritual heritage into church union. The Congregational church brought the rights of individual congregations, the liberty of prophesying, the love of spiritual freedom and the enforcement of civil justice. The Methodists brought evangelical zeal and human redemption, the testimony of spiritual experience, the ministry of sacred song and concern for social righteousness. The Presbyterians brought the sovereignty of God in Christ, vigilance for the church, care for education and sacred learning, and freedom from the state. The Local Union Churches brought concern for community life and this important principle — in things essential, unity, in things secondary, liberty.

Since 1925 the United Church of Canada has built upon this great inheritance. In the thirties it maintained its mission through drought and depression. In the forties it supported its young men and women who marched off to war, and their families. In the fifties it built a new church every weekday and a manse on Saturday to meet suburban development. In the sixties and early seventies it has increased its concern for world development and relief and worked for union with the Anglican Church in Canada and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). All this time it has been a social conscience to the nation, sent missionaries to work with national churches in many lands, ministered to groups of new Canadians in their own language and provided an educational programme second to none.

In 1968, the United Church of Canada and the Canada Conference of the Evangelical United Brethren consummated a union first discussed with the Methodists in 1890 and again in 1910. Our church continues to be a uniting as well as a United Church. Its many sided ministry and its strength in all parts of Canada, with the exception of rural Quebec, make it a great, national church, worthy indeed of its early pioneers who dreamed of one church of Christ in Canada.


from The Port Hope Times May 7, 1891
The attendance at the Port Hope Methodist Sunday School has grown to such dimensions, that the church authorities have been compelled to increase the seating capacity for this department of the church work. Plans and specifications for the enlargement of the school have been prepared, and tenders are now being asked for the erection of the addition to the building. The church owned a 15 foot lane to the north of the school, and 15 feet additional have been purchased from Mr. Austin, whose lot lies to the north of the lane. It is proposed to increase the width of the school by building on this 30 feet.

What is now known as the lecture room on the ground floor will be done away with, and the Sunday School will be located in its place. The ceilings will be removed, and there will be a gallery around the entire room, this gallery will also be used by the Sunday School, and will increase the seating capacity to 1,500. The land purchased cost $500; the cost of the addition will be $6,000, and furnishings, $1,000. Work will be commenced immediately on the opening of the tenders.

The last Trustees and Official Board members of the Methodist Church in Port Hope 1924
Members not in the picture: W F Greenaway, Dr M S Hawkins, R S Caldwell, Rev J W Totten, Elwin Brown and Mrs R Hayden
Thanks to Martha Clayton and Jim Phillips.
Cursor over tap a face to see name. Click here to enlarge photo.


PRESBYTERIANS, CONGREGATIONALISTS AND METHODISTS IN PORT HOPE UNITE
Fifty years have elapsed since June 10th, 1925 when the Congregational Church, the Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church joined as one body to form the United Church of Canada.

Many Presbyterians, both old and young realized the need to come together "in the unity of faith and the knowledge of the son of God" (Ephesians 4:13) for there is "one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all, and in you all" (Ephesians 4: 5-6).

The Presbyterian Church was a vital, happy congregation, but the membership became divided during the discussions relating to Church Union in 1924 and the differences of opinion caused a somewhat strained relationship.

The National Union was consummated in June 1925, but the one hundred and twenty-five Presbyterian members in Port Hope,who voted for Union, accepted letters of invitation from the Methodist Church to join them in March 1925.

It was with a feeling of nostalgia for the past and hope for the future that all of the Union group met at the Presbyterian Church on Walton Street on Sunday morning, February 22, and walked in one body down Brown Street to the Methodist Church which was to become Port Hope United Church.

Rev. J. W. Baird, Pastor of the Methodist Church received and welcomed the Presbyterians. Along with them was the Rev. J. T. Daley, a retired Congregational minister,and his family.

Leading the Presbyterian group was their minister Rev. F. W. Anderson, who favoured the formation of the United Church of Canada. He became a co-pastor with Mr. Baird, one preaching at the morning service and the other in the evening, until Mr. Baird's resignation owing to poor health in 1926. At this time Mr. Anderson was invited to assume the entire duties as minister and accepted, serving the United congregation until 1928, when he accepted a call from the United Church Congregation in Nanaimo, B.C.

His devoted leadership gave great strength to the congregation of the Port Hope United Church, as they faced the many problems of becoming a single congregation rather than two groups sharing the same building and minister.

Contributing to the harmony was the decision by the newly formed session to serve the elements of the sacrament of the Lord's Supper to the congregation in the pews rather than at the communion rail, and the gift of the Unionists of St. Paul's Presbyterian Church of a communion service of individual cups.

It is interesting to note that a Union of the Bible Christian Church in Port Hope with the Wesleyan Methodist Church took place on a Sunday morning in 1885. The Bible Christian Church was originally located in the house at 7 Hagerman Street.

On the morning of Union their Congregation walked in a body to the new Methodist Church carrying with them two white china Communion cups which have rested in many places during the last 90 years, but are now safely located in the Port Hope United Church.


United Church Choir 1925.
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The United Church was inaugurated on June 10, 1925 in Toronto, Ontario, when the Methodist Church, Canada, the Congregational Union of Canada, and 70 per cent of the Presbyterian Church in Canada entered into an organic union.

Joining as well was the small General Council of Union Churches, centred largely in Western Canada.

It was the first union of churches in the world to cross historical denominational lines and hence received international acclaim. Impetus for the union arose out of the concerns for serving the vast Canadian northwest and in the desire for better overseas mission. Each of the uniting churches, however, had a long history prior to 1925.

Cast of the operetta 'The Gypsy Rover' performed at the United Church c1939
Director, Ruth (Moffat) Turck; Musical Director, Thomas William Stanley; Lighting, Keith Long
Photo by William Herbert Trott
Thanks to Jim Phillips, Helen (Watson) Fulford, Liz (McLellan) Davidson, Owen Lent, Ray Turck, Dorothy (Dodd) Locke, Gwen (Hyne) Magee, Joyce (Evans) Gustar, Nancy (Hutchings) Peters and Irene (Baxter) Box.
Cursor over or tap a face to see name, Click here to enlarge photo.


United Church play c1940
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CHANGES TO THE UNITED CHURCH OF CANADA
As of January 1, 2019, a new organizational structure of The United Church of Canada came into effect. The congregation of Port Hope United Church is now referred to as a Community of Faith within this new structure. It resides in the East Central Ontario Regional Council. Presbyteries and Conferences no longer exist. Handbook pdf





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