A Centering Place
St. Columba by-the-Lake Presbyterian Church is a dynamic community of people seeking to live and explore faith in the midst of the challenges of today, where everyone has the opportunity to discover their spiritual centre.
The people of St. Columba come from many different faith and cultural backgrounds. We are a congregation committed to growing in faith through a contemporary and relevant interpretation of Christian tradition and scripture. We understand that while each of our faith journeys is unique, we all share a common road.
Our worship is a celebration of faith and community that is as inclusive for kids as it is to adults. We appreciate a contemporary view of scripture, heart lifting music, and stimulating preaching.
We value being active in issues both locally and globally, partnering with a variety of organizations and faith groups.
Located in Pointe-Claire, our building is a centre for many different groups including music teachers, dancers, a preschool, the West Island Women’s Centre, as a work place for intellectually challenged adults and much more. We are committed to opening our doors to serve our community and beyond.
Join us for worship on Sundays at 10h00.
For directions to St Columba click here.
Our Congregational Purpose is taken from Isaiah 61, used by Jesus as his own call to Ministry. We continue to be challenged by its implications for our own life:
God’s spirit has anointed us.
We have been sent to proclaim good news to the poor,
to release the prisoners, to restore sight to the blind, to free the oppressed,
to announce the year of Jubilee.
St. Columba by-the-Lake is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church in Canada and was established in Pointe-Claire in 1953. We are the third largest Presbyterian congregation on the island of Montreal with about 175 active members. We are diverse in background, belief, age and interest.
We are focused on serving the needs of our local and global community. Our building is a centre for community groups, providing affordable meeting space and rehearsal space for musicians. Some groups such as Extra Hands, a program for intellectually challenged adults, make use of our space every day to provide stimulating group activities.
We also look beyond our borders, supporting initiatives in the Developing World. Currently we continue to be committed to raising funds and awareness of the HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa to respond to one of the most compelling crises of our time.
Over the years, we have come to realize certain core values of the congregation.
St. Columbans tend to value highly:
- the search to understand the meaning of faith in our present context;
- openness and the encouragement to ask questions;
- inclusiveness and acceptance of the reality of diversity;
- social action & outreach;
- co-operation with others, including other congregations and faiths;
- the creativity and productivity that can result from team ministry, in many forms;
- worship that is meaningful for everyone, and innovative in style;
- preaching that challenges us to think hard about faith and life;
- variety and high quality in music;
- experimentation and risk taking;
- undertaking specific well defined projects;
- asking for focused short-term commitments of people’s time;
- questioning the status quo;
- operating with a minimal amount of hierarchy or formal structure.
Characteristics of our Ministry
Two qualities that best characterize ministry at St. Columba are creativity and the pursuit of excellence.
Imagine a congregation that:
- organizes worship on the theme “Uploading to the jPod” based on people’s suggestions of what they think Jesus should listen to in order to understand the human condition todayjPod_2
- holds a blues concert at a local nightclub in support of those battling the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Africa
- uses seasonal themes borrowed from titles of popular movies, songs and books
- develops a retail fair trade store as a way of being present in our community and helping the disadvantaged in the world
- pioneers using food as a vehicle for ministry in our community
As one member once remarked, “Many congregations think they are successful if they can repeat everything they have always done. At St. Columba we think it’s a failure if we do the same thing twice!”
Visitors to St. Columba are often struck by the superb quality of:
- our music :
- inspirational, eclectic, cool and catch your preaching :
- thought provoking, relevant, challenging and uplifting our kids’ programming :
- fun, creative, active and contemporary our outreach projects :
- ambitious, courageous, local and global.
We believe that God deserves our best. We strive for excellence in everything that we do.
St. Columba is proud of its excellent and qualified staff. The Rev. Ian Fraser has been minister at St. Columba since 1985, serving first as co-pastor with the Rev. Paul Scott until his retirement, and since 2000 as sole pastor. Michael McAuley grew up in the congregation and has been Music Director since 1990. Martina Tchipeff has been a member of St. Columba since 1988 and has worked as Kids’ Animator since 2011. Nadia Prevost is the newest member of the team, having joined in 2012.
Come and experience the St. Columba difference!