St. Paul’s United Church – naturally!

When my maternal grandfather, George McGinnis, proposed to marry my grandmother, Lillian MacPherson, it was more than a blend of Irish and Scottish families – Grandpa was an Anglican and “Gammy” a Presbyterian. While this culture mix would be trivial nowadays in 1920s Perth this made for interesting table talk. So it was that on June 26, 1925 George & Lillian McGinnis were married at St. Paul’s United Church, a brand new faith community as of the union – just two weeks earlier – of the Methodist Church of Canada, the Congregational Union and most of the Presbyterian Churches. The United Church of Canada has remained a meaningful part of my family’s life. Mom was organist for many years at the Valleyfield (Quebec) United Church of my childhood while both she and Dad served on several boards or committees. My older brother, Craig, became an ordained minister (he has since retired), I am a member of Trinity-St. Paul’s United in Toronto (apologies that its web-site is not kept more up-to-date), and sister Lynn is very active at Fredericton, New Brunswick’s Wilmot United Church (home of the current moderator, Peter Short).Community, particularly in a community of faith, is something I have continued to seek even when I was exploring other denominations or – as seems to be happening more now – communing with seekers of other religions or no religion.

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