Our History

A movement was started in 1906, which resulted in the erection and opening in 1910, of the Methodist Church on the current site of St. James United Church. The Ministers who served the Osgoode Station Methodists between 1910 and 1925 were: Rev. W. T. Brown, Rev. L. H. Fisher, Rev. D. D. Elliot, Rev. C. H. Brown, and Rev J. J. Ernest Brownlee.

During part of this same time, the Presbyterians formed a congregation in Osgoode Station as part of a 3 part charge including Wellington (now Kars) and North Gower, where the manse was located. Ministers who served the Osgoode Presbyterian Church were: Rev. J. H. Woodside, Rev. D. A. McCuaig, Rev. W. A. McWilliam, Rev. John McKinnon. and Rev. Sutherland Wood.

With Church Union in 1925, the Presbyterians and Methodists united and chose to use the larger Methodist church building as their place of worship. The Charge, formed at the time of Union, also included Trinity United Church at Kars.

In 1927, a committee was formed to either remodel the present building or construct a new church. Remodeling was the selected course of action. A major improvement was the installation of electric lights. In the following year, name selection by ballot chose "St. James" over the name "Emmanuel" for the newly united congregation.

By the 1950's, the condition of the church building, plus the need for Christian Education space, resulted in decision to construct a new Church. The Church that was built in 1910 was de-dedicated and sod turned for the construction of the present Church, on June 10, 1962. The new building was erected on the site, and dedicated on August 24th, 1964. An additional piece of land to accommodate the new Church building and parking was obtained at that time.

The congregation has made improvements over the years including: completing the sanctuary interior, adding a new piano/organ and sound system, completing a new interior for the basement, and remodeling the kitchen. In 2005, a major project was completed that resulted in having a Lift installed to provide handicap access to the sanctuary and basement levels, from the side entrance at ground level. This project also included the addition of a new vinyl exterior to the whole church. St. James has a sanctuary that seats 100 and a basement that seats 80 people.

Ministers who have served the St. James United are: Reverends David Smith, Arthur F. Shorten, Earl. D. Sexsmith, Wesley Jones, Murray Jose, Warren Dickson, Archie Manson, Kenneth Robinson, William E. Brignall, Charles Massey, Earl K. St. Jean, Tom Sherwood, Carmen G. Beckel, David Chesney, Dr. Daniel Hansen, Kim Vidal and currently Reverend Grant McNeil.

Our major fund raisers are our spring Fish Fry, and our fall Ribfest, both with take-outs. Another project is the annual pie, cake/cookie and drinks for Canada Day celebrations. The most active group in the church continues to be the UCW. They are the catalyst that organizes events including the above three major events.
Our Sunday School opens in September and concludes with a fun Family swim and BBQ in June.

In a community setting such as Osgoode Village, our Church provides meeting places for the Guides, Browns and Sparks and other groups. We have expanded accessibility with our new lift and hope to attract more use; a community service.

We believe that the words sent to our congregation at the opening of the current Church building in 1964 by its former minister, Rev. Warren Dickson (1952 - 1954), inspires us with a sense of obligation to reach out to the community in which we live.His words are: "May it always be a Church of the warm heart, of the open mind, of the adventurous spirit; the Church that cares, that heals hurt lives, that comforts old people, one that challenges youth. May it always be a high Church, a broad Church, and a low Church; high as the ideals of Jesus, broad as the love of God, low as the humblest man. May it be a working Church, a winsome Church, a praying Church and a missionary Church, the Church of the living God."