Thanksgiving 2020 Food Drive

Our second annual Thanksgiving food drive in support of the Salvation Army Food Bank is this Sunday, October 11th from 10AM till noon.
As all 2020 Civic Holiday activities were cancelled this summer, including both the church and SPA’s annual food drive, we thought this weekend of emptying cottage larders would be a great opportunity to give back. Bring your cans of soup, dried beans, jars of peanut butter, bags of pasta, and all those other non-perishables to the church. We will collect and deliver.

Cheques made out to the Salvation Army Food Bank also gratefully received.

Many thanks to Larry Thomas for offering to collect and deliver, and a very Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Denise Graham, 1955-2020

Sturgeon Point, and the Union Church, has lost a dear member of its community. Our sincere sympathies to Denise’s family and friends.

Denise Lynn Graham
June 27, 1955 – July 9, 2020
Denise Graham passed away on July 9 after a short battle with cancer. She is survived by Allan Hux, her loving husband of 36.5 years, son Ryan Hux, brother Tom Graham, sister Kimberly Fanning (Richard), niece Ashley McGowan (Mark Stafford) , and many Graham and Craig cousins. Denise is the eldest child of the late Ross Graham and Barb Graham (nee Craig) and will be deeply missed by her loving siblings, Kim and Tom.
Denise was born in 1955 in Toronto and grew up in Don Mills where she attended Broadlands P.S., Milneford Jr. High, and Victoria Park S.S. She was raised in Donminster United Church where she actively participated in Sunday School and youth programs. The girls on Muircrest Dr., Kim, Lesley, Debbie, Sandy, Vicki, Susan and Kimberly, played together and became life-long friends.
Denise entered the very first year of the Applied Geography program at Ryerson University in 1974 and graduated in 1978. She landed summer jobs with the City of Toronto Planning Department in 1977 and 1978 and was hired as a City Planner in 1978. She had a wonderful career in the Planning Department starting in the Zoning and Official Plan section and then transferring to the Community Planning section. She loved her years in the site offices in the Beaches, Swansea, the Junction, Bloor West, Riverdale, and North Toronto. She enjoyed working with residents’ associations, business improvement associations, and city councillors like Derwyn Shea, Anne Johnston, Kay Gardner, Jack Layton and Paula Fletcher. Denise appeared as a city witness at some Ontario Municipal Board Hearings such as the one on the Riverdale Hospital which were high points in her career. After retiring in December 2011, she was selected to sit on the Committee of Adjustment for North York from 2015 – 2019 and was re-appointed for a second term in the fall of 2019. Denise enjoyed doing site visits to check the applicants’ plans against the four tests for “minor variances.”
Denise and Allan were married in 1983 and lived in Leaside. When she was expecting their son, Ryan, they moved to the Yonge-Lawrence neighbourhood. They joined Fairlawn Avenue United Church where Denise was active in the Toddler Room and the Children’s Education Committee. After she retired from the city, she co-coordinated the Tuesday Lunch Crowd, served on the board of the Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre, and organized art classes in the spring and fall with the artist, Ruth Hayes. She also took up yoga with Randy Basian. She met many wonderful people through these activities.
Denise’s other major passion was the family cottage on Graham Lane in Sturgeon Point. Her grandfather, Tom Graham, and father, Ross Graham built the cottage in the early 1960s and she spent her summers there. She learned to swim and water ski on Sturgeon Lake and play with her cousins, Mary-Rose, Heather, Bob and Bill Graham. Frequently, her Craig cousins, Darryl, Wayne and David, also came to the cottage. When she was sixteen she got a summer job at Brandon Hardware in Fenelon Falls and during the first two years of university, she started earlier and stayed with her Grandpa Graham on Oak Street in front of the Fenelon Falls locks on the Trent-Severn water system. She was deeply disappointed not to be going to the cottage this summer which she shares with her sister, Kimberly.
A celebration of Denise Graham’s life will be held at Fairlawn Avenue United Church after the COVID-19 pandemic has passed. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Denise’s name to Fairlawn Avenue United Church, 28 Fairlawn Avenue, Toronto, M5M 1S7, or through their website at

Our church in 2020

Summer services, weddings, baptisms, and other celebrations of life have been held at the Sturgeon Point Union Church since 1915, and before this heritage building was constructed, in a tent and a makeshift structure on this piece of land since 1888.

So far as we know, this is the first summer in living or recorded history that our bell is quiet and services cancelled.  And though we regret this decision to remain shuttered, our desire to keep this community, our guest ministers, our organist Lynne Davis and our congregation safe from a highly contagious virus is paramount. 

As our collection bowls are also out of circulation, if you are able to support the church and the community charities it in turn supports, you can send an e-transfer to [email protected] or mail a cheque to Sturgeon Point Union Church ℅ Jean Crighton, 43 Irene Avenue, Sturgeon Pt, ON K0M1N0

For 2020 ‘petite’ wedding inquiries, and to hold much bigger events in 2021, please contact [email protected]

Madison Kozak live! July 14th/19, 4PM

Post performance update!

Madison Kozak’s fundraiser performance at the Sturgeon Point Union Church raised over $3,000 for the Kawartha Lakes Women’s Resources.

Check out a video clip of Madison and great duet with her Dad and the rest of Sturgeon Point as backup singers.

Thanks again Madison. It was a great performance!

We are delighted to have our own superstar musician, Madison Kozak, perform a concert at the church on Sunday July 14th! Raised in Lindsay and at Sturgeon Point, Madison’s passion and talent led her to Nashville, where she writes and performs music “with a strong back beat and lots of groove.”

Madison has asked that the concert benefit Women’s Resources, an organization that works to help abused women and their children in the Kawartha Lakes region.

Tickets ($20 adults,, $10 kids) available at:

  1. SPA’s Canada Day barbecue at the park, Sunday June 30 at noon.
  2. SLSC – speak with head instructor Kate)
  3. At the church on Sunday July 7th
  4. By emailing [email protected]

Mae Macmillan remembered

March 13, 1921 — June 14, 2019

Celebration of Life: Tuesday, July 2nd, 2 p.m., at Eglinton St-George’s United Church, 33 Litton Blvd., Toronto

Mae has been a beloved member of our community and our church since the day she arrived at Sturgeon Point as a young nurse, to help Amy and Clair Stewart with their growing family.  

It had been her plan to stay for the summer, but she did not plan on meeting the dashing Flavelle Macmillan. That one summer turned into a lifetime of summers, mostly spent at their cottage in Sandy Point. 

Mae joined the board of the Sturgeon Point Union Church in 1971. She helmed every conceivable position until her retirement, forty years later.  For a dozen years she served as secretary of the church and the record of meetings, captured in her beautifully hand-written minutes, filled with her charm and wit, are a joy to read.

Mae was much loved and will be much missed.  

It was Mae’s wish that the church, and the outreach work it does, be supported in her memory. Donations may be received two ways:

  • By sending a cheque to:

Sturgeon Point Union Church
c/o Jeanne Crighton
43 Irene Avenue
Fenelon Falls, ON K0M 1N0

(We regret we are not able to accept electronic donations at this time.)

  • By donating with credit card or through PayPal via Sturgeon Point Association Please write ‘Mae Macmillan memorial’ in subject line

The Christians, a play by Lucas Hnath

Performed by Toronto’s Scrap Paper Theatre, at the Sturgeon Point Church

Saturday, August 17th at 4PM

Free admission. All are welcome.

The Christians is a big little play about influence and faith in an American megachurch, and the trouble when its leader changes his mind. Pastor Paul is going to preach a sermon that will rock the foundations of his congregation. He thinks it will be well received. He’s wrong.

Peter Breyfogle remembered

Peter Breyfogle

Peter Nicholas Breyfogle

September 24, 1935 – October 20, 2018

Celebration of Life: Saturday, July 21, 2019

The Sturgeon Point Union Church played a large role in Peter Breyfogle’s cottage life. He was a faithful member of the congregation for decades, and served as chair of the church board, and trustee of the building he loved,  for more years then we can remember.  He will be sorely missed by his Point family, by Jo, Nick, Jillian, Charlie and Sam, and by his cottage friends. But he will also be missed by the church community. We look forward to being part of a Celebration of Life for Peter on Saturday, July 21, 2019

Death notice, Globe and Mail

Breyfogle, born September 24, 1935 Barcelona Spain, died October 20, 2018, Cobourg Canada.

Survived by his wife Jo, of 53 years; his son and daughter-in-law, Nick and Jillian; grandsons Charlie and Sam.

Graduate of Winchester College, University of Cambridge (Trinity College), and Harvard Business School. Champion rower, avid sailor, golfer, reader, and lover of bridge and crosswords.

World traveler and international businessman with Massey-Ferguson, Dome Petroleum, Investcan, and other entrepreneurial ventures, most recently in Egypt, China, and the Bahamas.

A celebration of his life will be held at his cherished home, Sturgeon Point, next summer.

Donations in his memory may be sent by cheque to:

Sturgeon Point Union Church
c/o Jeanne Crighton
43 Irene Avenue
Fenelon Falls, ON K0M 1N0

Our first bar mitzvah!

The first of many, we hope! In August, 2018, Kolya and his family held a coming of age ceremony at our church. The Sturgeon Point community was invited to help celebrate this important milestone in Kolya’s life.

For your interest… text I found helpful in understanding the rituals and tasks Kolya, his family and friends were performing at his bar mitzvah, an excerpt from “My Jewish Learning 101.”

“Coming of age for a Jew, which happens automatically at age 13 for a boy and 12 for a girl, is termed bar and bat mitzvah, that is, obligated to perform the Jewish mitzvot (commandments). A ceremony marking the first performance of mitzvot such as being called up to the Torah to say the blessings (known as “getting an aliyah“) began to make sense only in the Middle Ages. Earlier, the age of majority had little practical meaning because minors were “permitted” (though not “obligated”) to perform many rituals that were later reserved only for boys who had reached the age of bar mitzvah.

Bar/Bat Mitzvah History

The history of the bar mitzvah dates back to a fifth-century rabbinic text references a blessing (still part of a traditional bar mitzvah) recited by the father thanking God for freeing him from responsibility for the deeds of his child, who is now accountable for his own actions. A 14th-century text mentions a father reciting this blessing in a synagogue when his son has his first aliyah.

By the 17th century, boys celebrating this coming of age were also reading from the Torah, chanting the weekly prophetic portion, leading services, and delivering learned talks.

Religious reformers of 19th-century Europe, uncomfortable with the ritual focus of the bar mitzvah, developed the confirmation ceremony, which celebrated the acquisition of the principles of Jewish faith by older teens. The confirmation ceremony quickly included girls as well as boys and spread to Reform and later Conservative congregations in the United States.