Baptism

In The United Church of Canada, baptism at whatever age, is the sole rite of initiation into membership in the Church. The Service of Baptism is held within the regular Sunday worship service where the congregation offers its support and nurture to the candidate for baptism and her or his family, as appropriate. In the service, water is poured into the Baptismal Font, prayers for God’s grace are offered, and the candidate for baptism is presented to the congregation. In the case of infants and children, those sponsoring the baptism (usually the parent or parents) respond to questions about faith and the nurture of the child in the Christian tradition. Older individuals respond directly to those questions.

If you are interested in baptism, please contact our Minister of Sacraments, Rev Drew Strickland, or the church office.

Communion

The Sacrament of Communion is rooted in the meal that Jesus shared with his disciples just before the crucifixion, other meals that Jesus shared with friends, and the feasts of the Jewish people. When early Christians gathered around the table, they were remembering Jesus and celebrating his ministry that continued to live in a new way among them.

At Chalmers, the Sacrament of Communion takes place on various Sundays throughout the year and at significant occasions like Christmas and Easter. An occasional mid-week service of communion is held for those unable to attend the regular service on Sunday. Home communion is available by contacting our Ministers of Pastoral Care.

Confirmation

Faith and Life: Conversations on the Way

The purpose of this program is to invite young people, currently involved with Chalmers United Church, to join an intentional process of faith formation.

This will involve exploring, affirming and claiming faith in a journey that is both individual and part of a group. The program may, or may not, lead a participant to choose confirmation, the rite of the church which signifies full membership in the congregation and The United Church of Canada. In the United Church context, confirmation means the ‘confirming’ of Baptismal vows, which were taken earlier, usually when a person was an infant or a child. Participants who are not baptized are welcome in the program – baptism will be included prior to the act of confirmation for them.

For more information, please see Rev. Drew Strickland , or contact the church office.

Funerals

“In Life, in death, in life beyond death … God is with us, we are not alone.”

When someone we love dies, there are many things to consider, many decisions to make, often when we are in the midst of shock and pain. The ministers of Chalmers United Church are available to assist you at the time of death. Often, in the case of illness, the ministers will already have been in contact.

As Christians, we uphold the dignity and sacredness of life. We believe that life should be celebrated as God’s gift and that, even in death, we are called to celebrate and give thanks for life. Throughout history, Christians have developed rituals – ways of expressing in words, actions and symbols – to mark the occasion of death. Some of these take place in private, or with close family members and friends; others may be a public witness to faith.

Planning a Service to Remember and Celebrate A Person’s Life

As soon as possible after a death, one of the ministers will meet with you to begin planning for an appropriate service. A funeral is a service with the casket containing the person’s body present; a memorial service is a service without the body present. The timing of a service is generally determined in conversation between family members (or ‘next of kin’), the minister and the funeral director.
 The minister will want to meet with members of the family or close friends to plan the service and gain details about the person’s life. This meeting may take place at the church, in a family member’s home or on occasion, at the funeral home that is handling arrangements.

The Service

The service may be a funeral or a memorial service. Either service can take place in the church.
 A brief service of committal may also take place at the time of interment of the body or ashes at a cemetery or crematorium.
The minister will outline the service with those gathered to do the planning. It normally includes scripture readings, a short meditation, prayers, a time of remembrance about the person’s life, and often hymns. Family members or appropriate others may be asked to share remembrances or read scripture. A simple order of service or printed bulletin will be prepared if desired.
 If the service takes place in the church, it is appropriate to have people welcomed as they arrive. Greeters may be members of the church or family and friends. The funeral home will discuss pallbearers with you if there is a casket present.

Reception

Receptions following the service can take place in MacCallum Hall of Chalmers United Church. The church office will assist in making this arrangement.

After care

While the service is an important point in our move through grief, it is not all that is needed at this time. Pastoral Care at Chalmers United Church includes concern for individuals and families after the funeral or memorial service is concluded. One of the ministers will be keeping in touch, if you wish, as weeks and months go by.

Weddings

We welcome you interest in recognizing your marriage commitment in this church and within the context of the Christian community. We rejoice with you in this important decision in your lives, and offer you our prayers and support. We offer the following to assist you in your planning.

Marriage within the Christian Community

When you ask the minister of a Christian church to conduct your marriage,you declare your desire to seek God’s blessing and to acknowledge the context of your faith in the service.

First Steps

Call the church office (613-546-3263) and make an appointment for you and your partner to see one of our ministers. At the first interview, preliminary arrangements will be made and the time and date for your wedding will be confirmed.

Legal Document

Marriage is both a civil contract and a Christian covenant when it takes place in the church or with a minister presiding. You can purchase a marriage licence at any municipal office in Ontario. The licence must be delivered to the church (with fees) at least two weeks before the wedding.

Music

All arrangements for music will be made through the Minister of Music, David Melhorn-Boe (david.melhorn-boe@chalmersunitedchurch.com or 613 546-3264).

Photographs and Recordings

No flash photography is permitted during the wedding service either by a professional or by guests. However, pictures may be taken as the procession comes down the aisle, during the signing of the register and as the couple leaves. Video recordings may be made from a tripod only located at the side of the church. All arrangements must be discussed with the minister beforehand.

Decorating The Sanctuary

At Chalmers we understand the desire to make the space your wedding will be celebrated in feel special and beautiful. We would ask that you work with our caretaker to ensure your decorations do not pose a structural risk to the building and similarly that they do not damage the sanctuary in any way. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation in this matter. Several guidelines follow:

Candles are a beautiful way of enhancing your ceremony, however, they do pose a very real fire threat to the church. In using candles we would ask you check first with Chalmers staff as to the number and nature of the candles to be used.

Flowers may be placed at the front of the sanctuary. Please coordinate the time of the flower delivery with the church office.

Confetti, rice, flower petals and soap bubbles are not to be used inside the church. Confetti and rice are not to be used outside the church.

Adhesives: We ask that adhesives (tacks, nails, tape and glue) not be used inside or outside the sanctuary.

Wedding Honorariums

Members/adherents/active participants in the congregation: A donation to the church is gratefully accepted as an honorarium to the Minister of $300 and to the Minister of Music of $200.
 Payable at time of booking.

Newcomers to Chalmers United Church: $1,200. 
Deposit payable at time of booking $300.

Small weddings with 16 people or less: $500. Deposit payable at time of booking $200.

These fees are in effect for the 2016 calendar year and subject to change.