Trinity United Church

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Tel: (905) 852-6213 Fax: (905) 852-5941

20 First Avenue, Uxbridge, Ontario L9P 1M4  

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Trinity United Church  20 First Avenue, Uxbridge, Ontario L9P 1M4      Tel: (905) 852-6213   Fax: (905) 852-5941

Church History

Trinity United Church has a long and rich history in Uxbridge. The congregation was founded in 1858 as a Methodist church. The cornerstone of our current church building was laid in 1888. In 1925 we became a member congregation of the United Church of Canada.

Trinity has long had a tradition of vibrant worship and commitment to studying and sharing the Word of God. We continue that tradition today in our Sunday morning service as well as in our ministries for children, youth and adults. We are an active congregation of all ages, with an average Sunday morning attendance of about 120 people. We are committed to the community of Uxbridge, and we desire to be a blessing in Jesus' name. We count it a privilege to be a United Church congregation serving alongside our sisters and brothers of other Christian denominations in this township.

The Quaker Hill Four were a gospel quartet based in Trinity United Church in the 1940’s to the 1960’s. Ron Duckworth is the only surviving member, and is still a regular member of the Trinity congregation.

Historical Timeline

1855 services were held in the school but apparently Uxbridge was on its own, or with the Methodist Church in Prince Albert. Rev. Thomas Demorest was the circuit rider or resident minister at Prince Albert. (Port Perry is not mentioned.)

1856 Mr. John Plank donated the land on which the present church stands. A plain frame structure with basement was built. Stone foundation, wooden walls likely 12 feet high, rafters across a span of 24 feet, and a sloped ceiling and roof.

1858 The opening of the plain frame first church. Rev. W. Stephenson preacher. The driving shed was where the parking lot of Trinity Manor is now.

1868 First Ladies Aid organized. Between 1858 and November 1887, the original building was enlarged several times.

1867 An addition 24 feet by 40 feet was added to the west end at a cost of $700.00. This enlarged Wesleyan Methodist church building was officially opened on January 5, 1867.

1871 A front vestibule with a tower and a steeple was added to the East end of the church. A choir loft constructed, (likely at the West end). A bell was placed in the tower, costing $100.00.

1874 New parsonage built, north-east corner of Dominion and Second.

1878 the Church was enlarged by transepts on the north and south sides.

1881 Dominion Census - 537 declared themselves Methodists in Uxbridge Township of 1838.

1884 All branches of Methodists, Bible Christians, Canada Methodists, Episcopal Methodists, Primitive Methodists, and Wesleyan Methodists united under the name of Methodist Church of Canada.

1887 Decision to build a new Church because the frame wooden Church seating over 600 was crowded and with all the additions unsightly. The first canvass raised $11,300.00.

1888 Saturday in March - the stone work bee when local farmers brought stone by horse and wagon for the three foot thick foundation. Many of these field stones are below grade. The visible stone likely is field stone shaped by stone masons.

13 May 1888 - last service in the old building.

26 May 1888 - frame building torn down.

June 1988 - below ground foundation completed.

21 July 1988 - the two corner stones for present church laid.

17 December 1988 - basement ready for use with seating for 600 morning service.

Dimensions 96-98 feet, east west and 64 feet north south. The plans of the building were procured from Messrs. Langley and Burke, architects from Toronto. Local contractors were

Harman and Walker. carpenters

James Stobbs and Co, masonry and plastering.

H. Jones, iron work and painting

Williams Company, slating

Total cost $18,000.00 debt outstanding $3,873.00.

189 February 24, the formal opening, attendance was about 1,450. Seating capacity was 1,250 so 200 seats were added for this occasion (some pews have been removed, capacity now  is about 1,100 persons).

1901 Census Methodist members 487 in township of 1,657

1902 Pipe organ installed cost $2,000.00

Between 1902 and 1925 many ‘revival’ meetings.

1908 Business Men’s Bible class organized (69 charter members) and led by Thomas Gould.

1911 Rev. Roscoe Chapin ordained, first from membership. Census township population 1,453

1921 Census township population 1,456

1923 Electricity installed

1925 United Church of Canada Toronto East Presbytery, Rev. Albert E. Owen.

1931 Census Methodist members 420  in township of 1,325.

1933 Rev. Alf Binnington, ordained, second from membership.

1936 Rev. Ross Dobson Crosby, ordained, third from membership.

1938 The ‘Drys’ win in Uxbridge, by a majority of 417, the people of Uxbridge Ontario voted against the sale of beer and liquor. 80% of the total possible vote were polled, the highest ever recorded.

1941 Census Methodist members 396   in township of 1,406.

July 1941 - Rev. Levi E. Atkinson

1942 First use of the name “Trinity United”.

1951 Rev. Harold A Kennedy, moved from Toronto East Presbytery to York Presbytery.

1958 Rev. Donald Jay

1961 Pipes removed and space concealed by purple drape and Cross in memory of Mr. H. W. Knight. Ceiling lights in a gothic style installed. The Altar Rail removed.

1962 Trinity Hall officially dedicated. Inaugural service of the United Church Women, 21 January.

1963 Rev. Harold K. Wright.

1965 Rev. James Mills, died 19 August 1971 age 39.

1966 Flower stands dedicated

1971 Dedication of the Mills Memorial Chapel. Rev. James B. Gibson, ordained 1972.

1973 New manse built

1980 Rev. Michael Locke. First “Messiah” performed at Trinity.

1981 First upright piano in Sanctuary - in memory of Mrs. Romalda Jewell. Henri Vanderkooi, Organist.

1982 Trinity Manor opened with 40 one-bedroom units.

1983 Bethel Bible Study. Renovated Friendship Hall and New Kitchen, and washrooms dedicated.

1985 Rev David Clinker ordained, fourth from membership. Tom Baker, Organist.

1986 Mrs. Montgomery retired as secretary. Mrs. Carolyn Hicken, secretary.

1987 Rev. Paul Reed ordained, fifth from membership. Rev. John Tapscott. ordained, sixth from membership.

1988 Rev. Daniel Yourkevich. Rev. Jeanette Millar, associate minister. New electric organ installed.

1993 Rev. Leslie Sedore, ordained, seventh from membership.

1994 Church lift installed.

1997 Grand Piano dedicated in memory of Mrs. Yvonne Amos.

1998 Christ Candle in memory of Margaret Smith, Deaconess. Pulpit supplied by Rev. Newton Reed, Rev. Mort Patterson and Rev. Jean Day.

2000 Front steps rebuilt, landscaped, and dedicated. Rev. Alan Mills. Diane Duncan, secretary.

2001 First Alpha Program.

2003 New chairs in basement, new shingles on south roof.

2004 Assistant Volunteer Minister - Rev. Ralph Garbe.

2006 Ministry Team - Rev. Alan Mills, Rev. Ralph Garbe, Pastor Paul Sabin.

2010 Interim Minister - Dr. Bill Fritz.

2011 Interim Minister - Rev Ralph Garbe.

2012 Minister - Rev. Kirby Constable. Organist Carolyn Piet.

Trinity United Church