Dear members:

    It has been almost a year since the previous issue of The Meetinghouse has been published.  The usual activities of CFHA have continued during this interval.  In addition, much effort has gone into upgrafing member on-line capability. This issue will provide details of these activities, plus some familiar features such as Canada Tells and Transcription Tidbits. You will also find information on the upcoming Annual General Meeting. This year, n addition to, another great program and keynote presentation, the business meeting will deal with organization transition considerations. Please plan to attend our friendly and informative annual gathering.

Earlier this year we marked with sadness the passing of Kathleen Schnitz-Hertzberg, the surviving co-founder of CFHA. It is remarkable to realize that it has been 47 years since Kathleen and Grace Pincoe, both members of Toronto Monthly Meeting, created the Association and supported it during the early years. Please see the tribute to Kathleen in this issue.

We also note the recent passing of Life member Arnold Runners. Arnold contributed to CFHA in many ways. From time to time Arnold would mail in a simple hand written note expressing appreciation for the wok of CFHA. These were always gratefully received. 

Last fall marked the passing of CFJA supporters Jo Vellacott. Jo used her considerable talents as a researcher and writer and her concern for feminism, and for justice issues to contribute three informative articles to the Canadian Quaker History Journal.

We also note the passing over a year ago of long-time member Bert Ross. Bert was a frequent participant at our AGM sessions in recent years, and a very active member of Yonge Street Monthly Meeting.

    Communications technology, social norms and knowledge have all undergone immense change in the past 47 years. Tendencies to obscure, ignore or modify historical narratives are not new or unique to present day spokespersons. What is new and unique is the pervasive capability of current technology to alter and establish public understanding and perspective of the historical record. Present day social experience appears to strongly recommend that a solid working knowledge of historical information and an ability to critically discern embellishment, exaggeration and denial is a skill much needed by modern citizens. Development of an informed perspective is a shared social responsibility not to be relegated exclusively to the experts and specialists in the subject.

    Although under-appreciated, Canadian Quaker history is a no less important component of Canadian history. CFHA has sought to provide free public access to the contents of extensive original Quaker documents, and has promoted awareness and appreciation of little-known but significant Quaker contributions made to the collective Canadian experience. Arguably, the benefit of such work and the need to do more is greater now than at the start. We hope you agree, and that you will continue your interest in and support of CFHA activities.

In closing let me add that this will be the last planned issue of The Meetinghouse as we transition to a new electronic blog format. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all who have generously contributed and supported this newsletter over the years. A special “Thank you” is due to the contributors to this issue. They include: David New lands, Joyce Harris, David Zavitz, Heather Ioannou, June Pollard, Carman Foster, Heather Somers, Evelyn Schmitz-Hertzberg and Randy Saylor. Special thanks are also due once again to Tim Chisholm for his masterful layout and formatting. 

Summer is now fully upon us, and a very pleasant one in recent weeks. There is a lot of information in this issue. I hope you enjoy it and that we will see you  in person or in spirit when we gather next month.

    Cheers! And Best Wishes,

    Gordon Thompson

Categories: Meetinghouse


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