Saturday, July 19, 2008

A trio of churches, July 1, 2008

I think I can legitimately use the trendy term "staycation" for my summer sojurn this year. Everything was done within day trip distance and it was great fun.

For starters I met Cousin 1 at Union Station in Toronto on Friday, July 11th and, after doing our Marco! / Polo! routine, we set off on what became a church tour in downtown Toronto.
Our first stop was St. James Cathedral, the Anglican cathedral of Toronto.

On the east and west sides of St. James are the retired colours (below) of the Royal Canadian Grenadiers and the Royal Regiment of Canada.

Our second stop was Metropolitan United Church. In 1928 fire destroyed most of the church building. Determined to rebuild on the old foundation, the congregation commissioned a redesigned structure . These lanterns are rumoured to have been made from stained glass that members of the congregation salvaged from the ruins of the fire. The congregation of Metropolitan United Church has voted to be recognized as Affirming: welcoming of all people regardless of their sexual orientation to worship and minister among them ( The property has a community feel about it with these well-used chess tables on the property.
The final stop on our tour was the Church of the Holy Trinity which is tucked behind the behemoth Eaton Centre. The Church of the Holy Trinity opened in 1847 following the gift of an anonymous donor (later revealed as Mary Lambert Swale of Settle, England). Mrs. Swale had stipulated that all pews were to be free and unreserved, a tenet of the High Church party in England at the time. The way the unique and painful looking pews are arranged allows for an unobstructed view of the altar from all seats. Of the three buildings, this is the one that spoke to me.
This photo below give a perspective of how close the church is to the Eaton Centre. The corner of the church is on the far left and an entrance to the Eaton Centre is on the far right.

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