Nurturing the Congregation

Nurturing the Congregation

The Art and Soul Ministry Circle is involved in enhancing the congregation’s worship experience by creating and leading art projects that are incorporated into the worship service.  While music has been the art form most present in our worship, the Art and Soul Committee seeks to include other art forms to deepen the worship experience. Some of these forms involve presentations by individuals or small groups, but many are art projects carried out by all members of the congregation, working to create something together. The projects are all designed to be relevant to the theme of the services, to be able to be done by everyone, and to be a beautiful and meaningful creation. Examples include the Easter origami dove installation, the Advent star canopy, the Beatitude paper cut banners, the Advent bow garlands, and the Advent congregational crèche figures. An enduring project is the Light into Light artwork, music and poetry.

Art in the Sanctuary of SSUC

The Triptych by Margot Finley

Each Advent, Margot Finley’s wondrous depiction of the miracle of Christmas returns to the sanctuary, attached to the reredos, resting safely on the communion table deep in the chancel. This impressive, arresting triptych, with echoes of William Kurelek’s Northern Nativity images, brings peace and a sense of mystery into Sydenham Street United Church. The large work, with its Canadian images – rural farmhouse, a toque, sled dogs, piled-up snow – nevertheless glows with the Light gleaming through the crack in the stable door. This is surely not the stable depicted in traditional Nativity scenes, yet marvellously appropriate.  Each Advent season since 1999, members of the congregation have looked forward to Margot’s comforting, inspiring images.

The Signature Quilt by Diane Berry: Responding to the Call

In 1994, Sydenham Street United Church committed to raise $600,000 for the restoration of our heritage church in downtown Kingston.  Diane Berry, a member of the church and accomplished quilter, proposed to create a “signature” quilt in support of the fund-raising campaign. The “signatures” earned over $10,000 in donations. The quilt hung in the upstairs hall for many years and most recently in the chancel in Fall 2020. Diane designed, gathered, prepared and hand-pieced the fabric into blocks, and embroidered the name of each donor into one of the more than 300 segments of the fans that surround the central focal point of the church, replicated from an image created by Ian McAskill, a Kingston jeweler and designer. Her husband, Jim, joined her in the quilting. Read more

The Signature Quit

Music and Choir

Our music program is a vital part of our worship service.

The choir sings “For the Healing of the Nations” by Henry Purcell

Mark Sirett’s Choral Music

We are happy to share this lovely Advent piece by Dr Mark Sirett, performed by the National Lutheran Choir.

National Lutheran Choir sings Thou Shalt Know Him. Music & text: Mark G. Sirett.

Join our friend Ruth Wilson and choir members of Aurora Chorealis in a Christmas presentation from Yellowknife, NT, filmed last year. Some engaging and lovely music and ideas shared by this group from the far north. A few scenes from a part of Canada that many of us may not have visited in winter.  Watch it to the end and see Ruth and her choir singing in a frosty scene standing on Great Slave Lake. 

Enjoy another Christmas piece written by Mark Sirett, and performed by Cantabile Choirs at Sydenham Street United Church, recorded in 2000. Dr Sirett is playing the organ and conducting the singers in this moving message of hope for peace on earth.

Meet our choir

SSUC has a long history of excellence in church music. The Sydenham Street United Street Choir is a vital part of our worship service. The choir sings an eclectic repertoire spanning five centuries of sacred music. During normal times, it rehearses on Thursday evenings from 19:00 hr to 21:30 hr. and sings during the 11:00 hr worship services each Sunday from September through late June.   New choir members are always welcome: contact Barb Carr or Marilyn Huffman through the church office.

The Easter Road to Pentecost – From Light into Light

Our award-winning art/poetry/music presentation, The Easter Road, brightens the walls of our sanctuary.

Updated 2022 05 14