The Church of the Good Shepherd is the youngest church in the Parish of Cambridge and Waterborough.
In the summer of 1903, Messrs John and George Robinson gave a piece of land for the erection of a church and for the adjacent churchyard. The foundation stone was laid on Tuesday, September 22, 1903 by the Rev. Francis Partridge (Dean of the Diocese of Fredericton), assisted by the Rev. H.H. Gillies (Priest-in-Charge), the Rev. A.J. Gollmer (a former rector), Canon J. A. Richardson (Trinity Church, Saint John), the Rev. H.A. Cody (Rector of Greenwich) and the Rev H. S. Wainwright (Rector of Kingston). Following the laying of the foundation stone, a service was held in the Agricultural Hall in Cambridge.
Prior to 1863, the rectors of Gagetown served the Anglican people in the Cambridge-Narrows area. From 1863-1903, Rev. Benjamin Shaw held services in private homes and in the Agricultural Hall at Cambridge – now the Cambridge-Narrows Library.
The stonework, laid by Messrs Daniel Ryan of Fredericton and John Jones of Lakeview, was admired by all who viewed it. On October 1st, 1903, carpenters Messrs Philip White and Robert MacDonald began work using wood obtained from the nearby Robinson Mill.
The first service in the new church was held at 11:00 a.m. on Christmas Day, 1903. In spite of the bitterly cold day, there was a large attendance. Mr. A. L. White of San Francisco donated the magnificent east window depicting Christ blessing the children. It was made by Spencer & Sons of Montreal.
The Right Rev. J. A. Richardson, Bishop of Fredericton, consecrated the church on the First Sunday after Trinity, June 6, 1926.
The first wedding took place in the new church on October 10, 1917, when Ethel Blanche Robinson was married to Arnold Dykeman of Jemseg. The crew from the Robinson Mill were all invited to the ceremony and festivities.
The 25th anniversary of the Church of the Good Shepherd was celebrated on September 23, 1928. At this time, the bell was dedicated in memory of Edith Isabel Robinson by Rev. J. E. Taylor, then Priest-in-Charge. Earlier that year, the font (given by the Diocesan W.A.) was dedicated and the Glastonbury chair was given by Gertrude MacArthur in memory of her father James S. Robinson.
On September 22, 1953, the fiftieth anniversary was celebrated with an evening service in the church. The rector, Rev. F. P. Delong, and several other clergy were present. At this time, Dr. and Mrs. J.H.A. Holmes donated the chancel lights.
In 1954, the chairs in the nave of the church were replaced by pews made by a local craftsman, Mr. Lawrence Skidmore.
In 1958, Canon J. Robinson Belyea and family donated the sanctuary carpet and linoleum for the chancel. They subsequently donated the green frontal, upper frontal cloth, frontlet, the riddle posts, their curtains and dossal curtain in loving memory of Jessie Knight Belyea.
A large congregation and several deanery clergymen attended an evening service on September 18, 1963 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the church. Rev. E. Dos Santos (the new rector of Kingston) conducted the service and the Rev. P.C. Cowland and lay reader D.D. Sharp read the lessons. The rector, Rev. W. F. Hebden gave the bidding prayer and the Ven. A. F. Bate pronounced the benediction. Rev. B. J. Buckland (a former rector) delivered the sermon. The Rev. G. C. Akerley was also present. After the service, refreshments were served at the Cambridge High School.
In addition to the items mentioned, many other fine gifts of furnishings have been added to the interior of the church, as well as donations to help maintain the grounds and structure. Money was donated by the family of the late Beulah Webb and additional money was raised to fund the “Beulah Room” Hall addition which was completed in 2010.
The Church of the Good Shepherd celebrated its 100th year anniversary in 2003.
Parish of Cambridge and Waterborough
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