Minister: Rev. Laurie McKnight
Office Hours: Monday, Tuesday – Thursday mornings, or by appointment.
Laurie enjoys serving the community in this corner of Sandy Hill with this family of faith because of the diversity of this neighbourhood and because of their goal to become an intercultural church. She has served United Churches throughout Ontario in both urban and rural settings since 1983 and has been serving SPE since 2009. Her education was received from Queen’s Theological College in Kingston (MDiv 1998), O.I.S.E., University of Toronto (M.Ed., 1986) where she pursued studies in Adult Education and Community Development, the Centre for Christian Studies (1982) where she received training for Diaconal Ministry and Queen’s University (B.A.,1974 in Psychology). She is currently completing her training in Intentional Interim Ministry to develop her skills for transformational leadership as we face a changing church and society. She has pursued studies in music – piano, flute, guitar and choral singing – and currently enjoys singing soprano in the church choir and the Nepean Community Choir.
She brings her experiences as a woman, daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, storyteller, preacher, musician, educator, and counsellor to this ministry as she seeks to be faithful to a gospel of God’s compassionate unconditional love. Too that work of interpretation of the scriptures she brings her imagination, humour, compassion, openness and passion for social justice. Her hope is that people will find a sense of belonging and acceptance through the St. Paul’s-Eastern community so that the way Jesus Christ may be known, and the life and healing of the Spirit will be experienced.
Organist / Music Director: Paul Grose
Paul was born in 1965 in Newfoundland where his father was serving his first pastoral charge as a United Church minister. Paul’s family moved back to Ontario when he was three, and he began studying piano at age seven. His lifelong connection with church choirs began in the Thamesview United Church junior choir in Fullarton, Ontario, also at the age of seven. While a teenager, Paul’s family went to Kenya for United Church mission work, where Paul had the opportunity to perform with an African choir, sparking a lifelong interest in African music. In 1989, Paul received an Honours Bachelor of Music, specializing in history, theory and piano, from McMaster University. Upon graduation, he studied for two years at Nanjing Teachers’ University in China on a student scholarship, learning to play traditional musical instruments including the pipa, xiao, banhu, suona and guzheng with teachers such as Min Jijian and Min Xiaofeng. After returning to Canada, Paul apprenticed on the pipe organ with Geoffrey Thomson at St. John’s United Church in Stratford, Ontario, and has held music director positions at a number of churches since then. Paul has been a member of St. Paul’s-Eastern in Ottawa since 1995, serving as Music Director from 1995 to 2005, participating as a regular choir member for a number of years, and then taking up the Music Director position again in 2014. Paul especially loves a cappella music, and has a wide range of musical listening interests, with favorites including Joni Mitchell and Miles Davis. Paul and his wife took up ballroom dancing as a hobby in 2013.
Church Administrator: Patrick Saumur
Office Hours: Monday and Friday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Thursday 8:30 a.m.to 12:30 p.m.
Children’s Ministry Coordinator:
Custodian: William Potts-Halpin