Sunday, November 22, 2015

A Firm and Generous Foundation

Yesterday the building which is Bridge St United Church was filled to overflowing with activity related to our 200th anniversary celebrations. There was a midday concert featuring our pipe organ and bell ringers. Then an encore of The Circuit Riders, a dramatic retelling of the story of early Methodism. The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, Elizabeth Dowdeswell, toured our sanctuary before joining us for our dinner.

The delightful surprise of the day was the "fair" which featured two dozen booths with exhibits from organizations which have received funding from the Bridge St. Foundation through the years. Because the Foundation funds national and international initiatives for health, shelter, play, we wondered how many exhibitors we would have. Not only did twenty-four organizations with a local base respond, the public came to view what they had to offer. One organization has received a number of grants for it's play program for children with developmental issues. The total for them is more than $30,000 through the years. Other have received a single grant as seed money for an initiative. The Alzheimer's Society was given a grant recently to get a Music and Memory program off the ground, and we are the only funder. Ten Thousand Villages was there, and a representative for a health program in Nepal, and a school in Central America.

In just over forty years the Bridge St. Foundation has fulfilled its mandate and ministry admirably, giving away approximately $5.5 million.

I know that the directors were gratified by the turnout and there was the pleasure of meeting the people behind the applications. The Grants Committee works so diligently to respond to the many needs, and falling interest rates has made this even more of a challenge.

I felt God's Spirit in that room yesterday. Thank God for the ministry of the Bridge St. Foundation.


Judy said...


Frank said...

I too was very pleasantly surprised by the response, as part of the 200th anniversary weekend celebration.
I believe that it was a very gratifying testament, both to the initial establishment of the foundation, and to its continued support by dedicated volunteers who enable all the grants, investment and overall governing leadership activities that it requires.
Congratulations to all involved.

Freeborng said...

Thank you for the post. For more on early Methodism, I would like to invite you to the website for the book series, The Asbury Triptych Series. The trilogy based on the life of Francis Asbury, the young protégé of John Wesley and George Whitefield, opens with the book, Black Country. The opening novel in this three-book series details the amazing movement of Wesley and Whitefield in England and Ireland as well as its life-changing effect on a Great Britain sadly in need of transformation. Black Country also details the Wesleyan movement's effect on the future leader of Christianity in the American colonies, Francis Asbury. The website for the book series is Please enjoy the numerous articles on the website. Again, thank you, for the post.