Anniversary of the Ballinafad United Church, 3 May, 2009
On a bright
Sunday morning, with the sun shining through the bursting buds on the
maple trees bordering the church, a hearty congregation gathered to
celebrate the 131st. anniversary of the founding of the
Ballinafad Presbyterian Church. Among the congregation were many of the
descendents of the earliest settlers.
sign outside the red brick building proclaimed the Anniversary Service,
and invited all to attend the Kirkwood family lunch to follow.
Many of the
church attendees participated in the service, sharing their faith and
talents. From the young girls lighting the symbolic candles, to the son
of his namesake who built the original grist mill, Jim, a retired United
Church minister. As he spoke of the role of the church in the past, we
got a small glimpse of his life as a missionary, and his boyhood
memories of the village and the church. The choir sang as only a country
church choir can, beautifully. There were special musical offerings and
luncheon that followed was of course, prepared by the ladies. Tasty
recipes, particular to the occasion were served. There was time for
visiting, telling tales of the past and invitations to attend future
gatherings. A discussion group followed, looking at the role of the
Church today, and possibly that of the future. It would appear that the
Church still remains the focal point of the community today.
participants in the days events, met relatives they only see on such
occasions. The community of a few families in the early 1800s has grown,
and successive generations have moved away. But a settler’s roots go
deep in the soil of Ballinafad, and once in a while the descendants
Kirkwood in action
luncheon and discussion
planting of the Alternate leaf dogwood in front of the Mcclure-McKay
Home with Bill McKay, Wilma Sinclair, Uncle Sandy and Jim Kirkwood. We
wish to express our gratitude to the CVC for their collaboration in
providing the tree for the ceremony. A symbolic gesture which suggests
good things in the future.
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