Calvary United Church

Our History
Our congregation was established in 1890 as a Mission Church with the first service taking place in a private home on the afternoon of January 22nd. The primary purpose of this "outreach" action by Wellington Street Methodist church was to provide for a Sunday School program for the local children. The eventual hope was to have sufficient number of interested adults as well to warrant the creation of a permanent congregation. As a result of that first service, a congregation of worshippers was established, eventually to be known as "Calvary United Church".

The first building to house the congregation was constructed on the west side of High Street , south of Emery Street and was known as the High Street Methodist Mission. The Mission continued to grow and flourish, notwithstanding numerous challenges and setbacks encountered by the members of this dedicated community. On September 10, 1911, the first service was held in a new church building located at the present site and with the name of the congregation now changed to Ridout Street Methodist Church. The congregation retained that name until June 7, 1925 at which time the present name was adopted. There have been two additions to our church property since that time. On May 11, 1958, the Christian Education Wing was officially opened and dedicated. In May 1989, an ambitious renovation project was undertaken to refurbish and add many new requirements of a changing congregation to meet the necessities of the time. Also, an updated kitchen was completed to include the latest in equipment for serving congregational meals.

The Church building is considered to be one of the most beautiful structures in the city of London, retaining much of the architecture of the early 20th century. While there has been some alteration to the interior of the sanctuary over time, the "presence of God" is very much a part of these impressive surroundings. The sanctuary has a rear balcony which seats approx. 100 and a main floor, centre aisle layout, with a seating capacity of approx. 500 people. The pipe organ and grand piano produce a superb sound to the glory of God. Surrounding the sanctuary on three sides are 32 stained glass windows, which provide a striking setting for those present for worship and other activities held in the sanctuary. The colours, scenes and graphics outlined in these windows is a experience to behold.

The building addition in 1958 added a new wing to locate our staff offices, a parlour for small gatherings, a chapel and a number of sunday school rooms which also serve as a day nursery during the week. The renovations in 1989 added a lift for entry from the main floor to the sanctuary level, an updated large meeting room and other smaller rooms in the lower level, an outside wheelchair ramp. The refurbished kitchen allows the continuation of our tradition of serving a number of congregational meals each year, raising funds for church projects and provides fellowship for all ages.