Over a Century of Music at St. James United Church
As a living and creative expression of our faith, music has long played a significant role at St. James United Church.
From a Tuning Fork to a Lightening Strike
It started with just a tuning fork in the 1850s, but by the later part of the century, our first choir director, William Orchard, had a reed organ with which to accompany the congregation and choir in worship. Then came the pump organ, followed by the electric organ in the 1960s - just in time for Godspell!
In 1991, the family of Campbell Hughes generously donated an organ which was well used until 1998, when, unfortunately, it was hit by a strike of lightening.
Currently an electronic Lowery organ and a Knabe Grand piano accompany the choir and congregation. Acquired in 2007, the piano is but one of many instruments currently making music at St.James.
"Piano music makes my soul soar but people respond to all styles of music and at St James we try to have all styles.”(drums, guitar, recorder, trumpet)" - Karen Kelly, Music Director
Endearing Hymns to Inclusive Songbooks
The first hymn books at St.James United included “The Hymnary”, “Songs of the Gospel”, “Anglican/United Hymn Book”, and “Songs of the Gospel People." Much of the rich tradition and foundation of our faith can still be found in the words and melodies of these familiar and well-loved hymns.
The more inclusive language hymnbook “Voices United” was introduced in the late 1990s. Finally, the supplemental book “More Voices” was added in 2006, allowing our St James congregation plenty of ongoing opportunity to learn new tunes and hymns.
If you are interested in joining our Music Program, please check out our Choir Section!