Love, Service, Spirituality

2017 06-24

Cosburn Arts Centre – Upcoming Events

2017 06-23

Pride Parade 2017

Emily’s Weekday Wonderings – June 23, 2017

Photo Credit: Carlo Navarro


Diversity (Babies, Faith, and Canada)

This week I’ve been reading a book by Jena Pincott called Do Chocolate Lovers Have Sweeter Babies?: The Surprising Science of Pregnancy (spoiler alert: as a true chocolate lover I skipped ahead for the answer, and it seems there’s some research that suggests this may be the case because of chocolate’s ability to moderate stress). For those of you who were at church last Sunday when I shared that I am pregnant, my reading choice probably isn’t surprising.

I’ve also been reading a blog post on The Almost Indian Wife called “How Can You Teach Your Biracial Child To Be Proud Of Who They Are”.  Her first point is the need to surround your child with diversity. She writes, “You can do this by showing diversity in their books, food, friend groups, school, movies, and more. This doesn’t just mean their own culture. They need to be exposed to multiple cultures because it creates an environment of acceptance rather than intolerance.” I really appreciated her attention to learning not just about your own culture(s) but many others and, while I have a personal stake in this, I think this applies to all of us. (more…)

2017 06-21

Special Notice Re July Rentals

Our facility rental coordinator, John Bell, will be away from June 19th to July 24th inclusive, and will not be addressing any rental inquiries during that period.  Church events, including funerals and weddings, will continue to be coordinated through our Ministerial team.

Note also that most rental rooms are already booked for summer camps on weekdays through the entire summer.

Thank you!

2017 06-17

Emily’s Weekday Wonderings – June 17, 2017

Celebrations – Canada’s 150

I’ve explored the idea of birthdays and anniversaries when we’re talking about people, relationships, or congregations, but what about when we’re talking about countries? This year as we mark Canada’s 150 I’ve been wondering what it means to celebrate it. Recently I’ve been thinking about it a number of different ways.

History – while there are many events and people to celebrate in Canada’s past, there are also many things we need to recognize were wrong. Examples include mistreatment of First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples, in many ways including residential schools and the ‘sixties scoop.’ Other instances include the treatment of various immigrant groups throughout our history, from Chinese workers building the railway, to internment camps, to current instances of Islamophobia. How do we celebrate all that is good in our country’s past and present in a way that does not ignore the instances when our country has done harm?

Arts and Culture – In order to celebrate this country, it seems to me that we need to support Canadian talent and creativity, as well as the Canadian economy. In an age of globalization, there are many ways in which we name a value on being Canadian, but do not support the country with our spending habits or leisure time. I’m not sure if you heard about the CRTC decision earlier this (Canada’s 150th) year. (more…)

2017 06-15

Emily’s Weekday Wonderings – June 15, 2017

Celebrations – Leaside United Church’s Birth Day

When we celebrate a birthday or anniversary, we recognize the value in the person or relationship we are celebrating. Birthdays and anniversaries refocus us on people, and remind us of the passage of time. When we celebrate the birthday of a church (like the 92nd birthday of the United Church of Canada on June 10th, also the ‘Birth Day’ of our new Leaside United Church), we are celebrating all the people who make up that church – in the past, present, and future. For me, that was part of what was so wonderful about our Birth Day party on June 10th. You could walk one way and see the bouncy castle full of children, walking another direction would lead you to our Arts and Crafts Gallery with contributions from people aged 5 up to… well, a lot more years than that. Groups of adults gathered in the sanctuary to watch the youth video, or outside to sit and chat over pieces of cake. In so many ways, it was a celebration of people – past, present, and future.


Broadway Bedazzled Slideshow

A few memories from the Broadway Bedazzled Concert held in May at Leaside United Church. Choristers from our Chancel and Junior Choirs lead by Sharon Beckstead raised funds for our Give & Go program to help our Outreach and Local projects, singing many Broadway favourites! 🎼🎭🎤

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

2017 06-12

Birth Day Party Slideshow

Many thanks to Photographer Murray Fenner for these great pictures of the “Birth” Day Party last Saturday, June 10/17 as we celebrated the birth or our new congregation between Leaside United and Presteign-Woodbine United Churches.  A true celebration!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Stefanie’s Tree

Photo Credit: Murray Fenner

Stefanie Rengel’s Memorial Tree in full bloom this spring.

This gorgeous Cherry Blossom tree is on the grounds of Presteign-Woodbine United Church.

Taken this May by photographer Murray Fenner.


2017 06-05

Reaffirmation of Baptismal Faith

This group of incredible youth ventured on a journey with Rev. Emily Gordon, Tanya Wiles-Bell and Emily Pollock who led them through the Youth Faith Exploration program at Leaside United Church which started in September of 2016 and finished yesterday with the important decision to reaffirm their baptismal faith.  The year took them through a discovery of thoughtful topics like Jesus the Person, Creation/Connection & Conservation, Social Justice & Radical Hospitality to the United Church of Canada History (which they made a video about reenacting the Union of the different churches to become one United Church).  Field trips included a retreat weekend to Camp Big Canoe, a tour of the Ismaili Centre and volunteer work at the Out of the Cold program. Much learning, growing and self discovery occurred in these four amazing humans and we are committed to stay by their side as they continue on a learning adventure of faith.

2017 05-30

Are You Interested In …?


On Sunday at the Activity Fair, we had a table for people to sign up for ideas they might be interested in for next year. The idea is that we will definitely not do all of the ideas – just the ones that have the most interest. We’ve collected all these ideas and put them up on the wall outside our church offices.  Take some time when you are in the church next, to review the ideas and sign up for any that intrigue you!

Blessings, Emily Gordon & Tanya Wiles-Bell



2017 05-28

Activity Fair 2017

Spirit Alive – June 3, 2017

All welcome to join us for Spirit Alive this Saturday, June 3rd gathering at 10:00am at the Lawford’s home.


Ross Lawford will provide the leadership.  At noon we will eat together a shared potluck luncheon. Contact Ross or Bea for more information (416) 421-1135


On a regular basis Spirit Alive meets to explore matters of spirituality, meditate, and reflect together. Save the second Saturday morning of the month to meet at 10:00 to noon. Spirit Alive begins with coffee, snacks and fellowship followed by a period of led meditation, music, quiet time and reflection to deepen the sense of the spiritual at the center of one’s life. For more information contact Bea Lawford.