The Lower Musquodoboit Pastoral Charge is a rural charge of three churches located at the lower end of the beautiful Musquodoboit Valley, in Antrim, Meagher's Grant, and Elderbank. We are about an hour's drive from Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Lower Musquodoboit's communities are each quite distinct economically and demographically. Our congregations are older but have opened themselves to new families. A traditional spirit of cooperation runs throughout the charge, uniting around the church and its mission of care for our friends and neighbours.
Christian worship in Musquodoboit has occurred since the mid-19th century at St. Paul's in Antrim, St. James' in Meagher's Grant, and St. Andrew's in Elderbank. Each church has a distinct local history in its community and each is still the heart of its community today.
For many years, each church had a separate service each Sunday. The charge's minister would preside at two to three services. In 2001, when the minister was ill, the three congregations decided to hold only one service, rotating between the three churches. While each congregation remains somewhat distinct, the three have come together as one community to worship cooperatively. After the minister recovered, a vote was held and the charge decided to continue with a combined ministry.
Shared ministry allows the charge to cooperate more fully on fundraising and community outreach. At the same time, each church remains present and distinct. While services are structurally similar no matter the building, this arrangement allows each church to play its unique part in the whole, as has always been the case in Lower Musquodoboit.
Many ministers have served the Lower Musquodoboit Pastoral Charge, some for as long as nine years at a time. Ministers have helped celebrate community success and helped overcome challenge and tragedy. The relationship between minister and congregation has always been one of respect and mutual service.
We are very proud of Rev. Sarah Chapman, who grew up in the Lower Musquodoboit churches and who was ordained in May 2011 at Maritime Conference. She has also worked with several youth programs worldwide to share our spirit and service.
Every service is a little bit different--old hymns join new favourites; traditional prayers are read alongside new theology. Several significant services are traditionally celebrated here. Easter Morning and Christmas Eve services are always well-attended, as is the service that occurs on Palm Sunday. A "White Gift" service is held each year on the second Sunday in Advent to bless gifts of food for the Musquodoboit Valley Food Bank.
Each year, a "Sunrise Service" is held in the early hours of Easter morning, often on a hill overlooking Lays Lake in Meagher's Grant. A Remembrance Day service is held in each church, and then a wreath of poppies is taken to Middleton United for a combined service.
Several intergenerational services are held throughout the year, where children remain present for the entire service, and these services often celebrate Sunday School graduates or include other activities or presentations for children. Each year, a church picnic is held at the Manse to mark the Sunday School's closing for the summer--barbeque and music are enjoyed by all.
In the summers, combined services are held around the Musquodoboit Valley in conjunction with Middle and Upper Musquodoboit Pastoral Charges.
Activities and Fellowship
Recently, formal coffee fellowship has become a feature following select services. This is organized by the Lower Musquodoboit Church session, along with several other volunteers. Our charge features a mosaic of incredible cooks and bakers, and these afternoons are always a hit for both regulars and newcomers.
The charge also offers bible studies and other relevant classes from time to time, as interest dictates. For more information, please see What's New or the Community pages, check our Facebook page, or contact the office directly.
We are also on Facebook "Lower Musquodoboit United Churches"
The Lower Musquodoboit Pastoral Charge is a caring community of faith, anchored by traditional values, serving God through worship, music and fellowship, respecting the diversity and uniqueness of all people in the changing world.
Roll of Ministers
Rev. Linda Yates: 2014 - Present
Rev. Joan Griffin: 2006 - 2012
Rev. Dr. Linda Yates: 1999 - 2005
Rev. Janis Campbell: 1993 - 1998
Rev. Dale Chisholm: 1988 - 1993
Ron Frampton (student): 1986 - 1988