On the outside - a traditional Norman-style church, joined to a modern glass-enveloped Parish Centre. On the inside - the church has been completely refashioned and is beautifully illuminated by skylights outlining the roof. The architecture reflects the congregation - rooted in history, but wide open to the present world.
The membership is diverse and is made up of a healthy mix of seniors, empty-nesters, and parents with young children and teens.
The theme of being "a caring community” is a key goal of all of the members of the parish.
St Thomas' identity is expressed through "sincere hospitality,” which is extended to "all” persons as we seek to celebrate the Lordship of Jesus Christ through our worship, learning and discussion and diversity of opinions.
In being tasked with sharing his love with others, many members of the church family find themselves leaders in outreach programs active at local, national and international levels.
St Thomas’ offers a challenging adult learning environment, an exciting programme for the Christian development of children and youth, and many social events 'just for fun.' All members are encouraged to offer their talents to strengthen our common ministry. Even those 'shut-in' participate through prayer support.
The Parish of St Thomas’ was established in Belleville in 1818 whenthe first church was consecrated byCharles Stewart,the second LordBishop of Quebec. For almost two hundred years, generations of faithful have worshipped atSt. Thomas’ and have gone out fromits walls to serve their community.
The first St Thomas’church was a brickstructure completed in the 1820’s. It was soondeemed inadequate to the growing population andthe second St Thomas’was erected in 1858. Lessthan 20 years later, that building was partially destroyed by fire and it was rebuilt on the original plan in the 1870’s.This building remained largely unchanged until the night of April 20,1975,when fire once again totallygutted the church, with only the severely damaged exterior walls and bell tower remaining. The congregation rose to the task and chose to rebuild the churchwhile preserving as much of theoriginal building as possible. Architects were contracted to drawup plans for the present building, including its roof that ‘floats’ abovethe reconstructed and reinforced walls.
After the reconstruction, the exterior remained unchanged while the nave and sanctuary werecompletelyrenovated,now flooded with lightthrough theglass that connects the new roof to the old walls.St Thomas’ rose from the ashes ofdestruction to find new life in yetanother generation. The contrastbetween the traditional exterior and contemporary interior, reflects theway the congregation largely seesitself to this day.
Major work was again undertakenin 1990 when the cemetery wasexcavated and a new Parish Hall wasconstructed. The hall isconnected to the church and contains the parish offices.
St Thomas’ also has a mission church, the last in the diocese.StPaul’s has a strong and faith-full history, dating from 1874.
St. Paul's Mission is located at 35 St Paul Street, Belleville, between Church Street and John Street, South.
Worship is the one thing that we all do together – it is our central activity as a community. It is our time to praise God, to hear God’s word,and to be fed as we share in the bread and wine.
What can you expect from worship at St Thomas?
We worship together using the Anglican Book of Alternative Services, which is a contemporary language service book.
The 8:00 Sunday service and the 10:00 Wednesday services are 'said,' meaning they don't have any music.
The 10:30 service is the principal Sunday morning service at St Thomas'. We gather to sing, to pray, to hear from the scriptures, and to share in communion with one another and with God around the Lord's table. If you would like someone to sit with you, let one of the greeters know. If you have any questions before your first visit, feel free to contact the office.
Music is integral to worship at St. Thomas’. We worship in the Anglican Liturgical context and style. Singable, solid, engaging music music of different styles, genres, and methods of performance are used to support and enhance the worship experience. At St. Thomas’ we are proud to have a talented choir, chime choir and several contemporary worship leaders. We have an extensive and diverse list of talented musicians in the parish, many with experience leading worship in different settings.
Music ministry outside of the worship service is important for the community and fellowship, including Sunday school, youth group, vacation bible school, pastoral care, and other community gatherings. We are proud to be the host church for the Hastings & Prince Edward Regional Chorus and the Belleville Choral Society.
St Thomas’ is fortunate to have a 1977 Gabriel Kney organ*, an electric Yamaha Clavinova piano, a piano and a set of chimes. Our extensive music library is supported through appropriate licensing agreements with three music resource groups.
Special services occur at different times of the year and are usually announced in church and on the calendar page of the website.
Kids are welcome to stay in church or participate in the special programming for kids (nursery - teen). If you'd like to go with your child to Sunday school, you are most welcome to do so. In any case, the kids come back into the church just before communion starts. If you have any questions, you can contact our co-ordinator of Family, Children and Youth Ministries.
Parking is available around the church, with an entrance off of Church Street. There are entrances on three sides of the church, all of which will be open on Sunday morning. Just come in the door closest to you and follow the crowd. Wheelchair accessible Washrooms are in the hall.
St. Thomas’ Anglican Church is committed to excellence in serving all community members including people with disabilities. For a full description of our Accessible Customer Service Plan please select and download from the bottom of this page.
If you're interested in more information about St Thomas' history as a parish, its buildings, its worship and its programs, please explore the rest of this website. You can select and download the full Parish Profile from the bottom of this page.
We look forward to welcoming you at any time.