Angela's Blog

Coming soon ...
At the end of a gloomy summer news cycle reporting on events in Norway, Washington and London, I find myself anticipating our return to the autumn routine at First more keenly than in any previous year. For it is among the members of this community that I believe we do some of our best thinking and working together to interpret the signs of the times and, in turn, to discern how we can be of service individually and collectively. 

In times which no doubt seemed equally uncertain as our own, our religious forebears at First Unitarian spoke out about and acted boldly on behalf of the important issues of the day. Joseph Workman, the first psychiatrist in Canada and principal founder of our congregation in 1845, helped to establish a hospital for poor immigrants, advocated for women’s rights, for better mental health institutions and for free, non-sectarian, yet Christian education, which in his view should not include any imposed ritual, such as daily recitations of the Lord's Prayer. Emily Stowe, the first woman doctor in Canada, advocated for women’s rights and helped to found the first Canadian branch of the Theosophical Society whose aim it was to encourage universal humanity without distinctions of race, colour, creed or sex and which promoted studies of comparative religion, philosophy and science.

Remembering these words by Martin Luther: "Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree," I say, ?So may it be with us.? As we gather again this fall, let us move confidently forward together in service to a world which could sorely use the justice, equity and compassion for which we have so long laboured.