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A brief history

 

“For where two or three are gathered together in My Name there am I in the midst of them” Matt 18:20

 

Information on the first assembly of Christians gathered to the Lord’s Name in Ottawa (commonly referred to as “Brethren”) is rather sparse. The precise time of the origin of the first assembly in Ottawa is unknown, but, it is believed to be in the late 1850s or early 1860s. It is clear from letters that J.N. Darby wrote during his first visit to Canada in 1862-63 that there were already assemblies in Guelph, Hamilton, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.

 

The assembly thus gathered have met in various locations in Ottawa during the more than 150 years since their origin. We do not at the present know where they met for their meetings prior to 1878, but, we do know that they were meeting at Temperance Hall, on Rideau Street (site where old Union Station now stands) in July 1878. It may be that they had met there for some years. From 1879 to 1894 or ‘95 they met in the St. James Hall, 113-115 Sparks St. In 1895 they moved to the Aberdeen Hall at 224 1⁄2 Sparks St. and continued meeting there until 1901. From 1901 to 1905 they met in Sussex Chambers, 579 Little Sussex St. In 1905 they moved to a building owned by Edmund Hipp, a brother in the assembly, at 314 Lisgar Street where they continued to meet until 1914. In 1914 Stanley McDowell, a brother from the assembly in Montreal built a meeting Hall at 357 MacLaren Street. The assembly rented the hall from him for the next 50 years (1914-1964).

 

Stanley McDowell went home to be with Lord May 3, 1962. After his passing it became necessary for the MacLaren St. Hall to be sold in the process of settling his estate. As a result property at 379 Waverley Street was purchased from the Bethel Pentecostal Church in March 1964. The assembly continued to meet at that address until October 1970, at which time the property was sold. For the period October 1970 – May 1973 they met in the Cafeteria in the Highland Park High School on Broadview Ave.. During this period land was purchased and a new building was erected at 1102 Falaise Road, Nepean, now part of Ottawa. 

 

In May 1973 the assembly began meeting in the new hall at 1102 Falaise Road where they continue to do so at the present time.

 

The Christians meeting in the present building associate with Christian gatherings and individuals serving the Lord’s work in many countries around the world.