Bayfield-Little Shemogue Pastoral Charge

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Bayfield-Little Shemogue Pastoral Charge

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1860 -


A pastoral charge is a grouping of churches termed "preaching points" -- each with separate names and governing boards or sessions. These churches are served by one minister. The pastoral charge title usually reflects the breadth of the geographic area encompassing the charge.

The Baie Verte Methodist Circuit was formed in 1860 and Bayfield was one of the appointments in this circuit. Just over 10 years later, in 1872, a second minister came to live in the Bayfield section which included Port Elgin, Upper Cape, Cape Spear, and Cadman’s Corner. In 1880, Bayfield was made a separate circuit, consisting of Upper Cape, Cape Spear, and Cadman’s Corner. When the Presbyterian, Methodist and Congregational churches united to form the United Church of Canada in 1925, Bayfield Pastoral Charge contained the appointments of Bayfield, Upper Cape, Spence Settlement, and Cape Spear.

The first Methodist church in Bayfield was built in 1838. This building was replaced in 1888. The church at Upper Cape was built around 1838 as well. Later, a new church was built in Upper Cape and dedicated on August 21, 1892. The church at Cadman’s Corner was dedicated on October 7, 1894. A church at Cape Spear was erected in 1886.

In 1882, Colin and Lucinda Van Bushkirk sold their house to the Methodist Church to be used as a parsonage.

On October 16, 1894, a number of people met at the home of Jonathan Allen in Cape Spear to discuss the building of a Methodist church in the community. It is unknown when the building was erected but by July 3, 1895, the church had a trustee’s board. Cape Spear Methodist Church became Cape Spear United Church in 1925.

In 1925, Bayfield Methodist Circuit became part of The United Church of Canada. Bayfield Methodist Church became Wesley United Church and the Methodist church in Cape Tormentine became Trinity United Church.

The earliest Convenanter congregation in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia was established before 1830. Construction may have started on a church building as early as 1829 and the first communion service was held on July 3, 1831.

A Reformed Presbyterian congregation was organized by the Irish Synod in Shemogue in 1828. In the spring of 1830, construction began on a church building but the building was abandoned due to difficulties in obtaining a title to the property. A new building was started nearby in Murray Corner and the church was dedicated in 1831 by Rev. Alexander Clark.

In the early 1870s, it was decided to divide the district into two congregations. Consequently, a church was built at Chapman’s Corner in 1870 and a new church built at Murray Corner in 1872. In 1876, the minister of the Reformed Presbyterian Congregation in Shemogue along with 62 other people successfully petitioned the Presbytery of Wallace of The Presbyterian Church in Canada to allow them to be organized as the Congregation of Shemogue and Port Elgin of The Presbyterian Church in Canada. Chapman’s Corner remained a Reformed Presbyterian congregation but became a congregation of the Presbyterian Church in Canada in 1905. After this, a church was erected at Oulton’s Corner and became known as Zion Presbyterian.

The church at Murray Corner was destroyed by fire in the early 1920s and work commenced on a new building in 1922. The new church, which is now known as First Church, was dedicated on August 19, 1923.

In 1923, Rev. Leard, the minister of the Bayfield Methodist Circuit, suggested that he no longer serve Cadman’s Corner Methodist Church so the Little Shemogue Session agreed to take on the Cadman Corner congregation and evening services were held there.

The Bayfield-Little Shemogue Pastoral Charge is located on the eastern end of Westmorland County, New Brunswick. Preaching points include Bayfield (Wesley), Murray Corner (First), and Cape Tormentine (Trinity). Historic locations included, Little Shemogue, Cape Spear, Oulton's Corner, Cadman’s Corner, Chapman's Corner, and Upper Cape.

When the Presbyterian, Methodist and Congregational churches united to form the United Church of Canada in 1925, First Church, Zion Church, Port Elgin, and Tidnish became United Churches under two pastoral charges -- Bayfield and Little Shemogue. Bayfield Pastoral Charge contained the appointments of Bayfield, Upper Cape, Spence Settlement, and Cape Spear. The pastoral charge of Shemogue, Port Elgin, and Tidnish contained the preaching points of Oulton’s Corner, Tidnish, Murray, Corner, Chapman’s Corner, Cadman’s Corner, Port Elgin, and Shemogue. On July 1, 1927, Little Shemogue became a separate pastoral charge consisting of Murray Corner, Zion, Oulton’s Corner, Cadman’s Corner, Shemogue, and Chapman’s Corner. The church at Shemogue appears to have closed as a preaching place in 1953.

In June 1961 the two charges were united to form Bayfield-Little Shemogue Pastoral Charge consisting of the preaching points of Murray Corner, First Church, Bayfield, and Cape Tormentine. The churches in Upper Cape, Cape Spear, Cadman’s Corner, Chapman’s Corner, and Oulton’s Corner were closed around this time. The church in Spence Settlement was closed in 1963.


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