(Photo is circa 1980)
The church exterior circa 1931 – The church exterior originally consisted of gray siding, with a wooden sculptured burning bush adorning the top of the church steeple.
The church exterior circa 1968 – The decaying burning bush atop the steeple was removed, and replaced with a new stainless steel replica. The exterior of the church was divested of its original 1891 siding, which was replaced with warm beige stucco, featuring ‘Tudor’-styled trim work.
The church exterior circa 1991 – In celebration of the church’s 100th anniversary, the original front doors to the steeple were sealed, and a new larger Narthex was constructed, complete with a new staircase and an access ramp for the mobility impaired.
The sanctuary interior circa 1930 – The sanctuary was originally constructed with 4 large lead glass windows, a centrally located pulpit on the chancel, and seating that consisted of individual chairs, which were later joined together using single long boards, and later still replaced with the introduction of pews.
The sanctuary interior circa 1958 – 1958 saw the completion of the church’s new hall. However, the new brick structure blocked the large window at the rear of the chancel. A decision was made to ‘modernize’ the chancel. This included covering the window entirely in blue drapery, adding the choir pews, the contoured walls behind them, a new off-centered pulpit, a new communion table, and adding enough pews to finally remove the last of the chaired seating.
The sanctuary interior circa 1968 – In 1968, the sanctuary’s interior underwent major renovations. The light wood was stained dark, the chancel was covered in green and gold damask with tall Gothic arches superimposed upon it. The same fabric was used to refurbish the apron and inserts of the original 1891 pulpit, which was reintroduced. The aisles were carpeted, and the large windows were replaced. The lead, having begun to disintegrate and thereby reducing the insulation, necessitated the change.
(Photo was taken 2018)
1925 – The Year of Church Union
1925 saw the movement towards what has come to be called ‘Church Union’. ‘Church Union’ was the process by which a number of Presbyterian, Methodist, and Congregationalist Churches amalgamated to form the United Church of Canada. Individual churches were provided the opportunity to enter into ’Church Union’ upon a majority vote of congregational members.
The congregation of Knox Church was divided on the matter. But when put to a vote, 29 members favoured ‘Union’, while 83 voted against it. As a result, Knox remained a Presbyterian congregation. The minister at the time however, the Rev. Rae, had been a strong supporter of ‘Church Union’, and following the congregational vote, promptly resigned in June 1925.
1925 was not only a difficult year for the congregation at Knox, but a difficult year for the Presbyterian Church in Canada. More than 60% of the Presbyterian congregations voted to join ‘Church Union’. Overnight, the Presbyterian Church in Canada went from being one of the largest Protestant Christian denominations, to being one of Canada’s smallest.
As of 2012, the Presbyterian Church in Canada had 1,342 ministers, and 102,785 professing members, as well as a sizable number of adherents (attendees who are not yet professing members.)
(Photo was taken 2018)