We are very happy to announce that Brett Main has agreed to take on the role of Interim Faith Formation Coordinator for Children and Youth while Shara Benavidez is on maternity leave.  Brett is a member of St. Andrew’s and a candidate for the Ministry of Word and Sacraments, studying at Knox College.  He has been a member of the Faith Formation Ministry and has also led adult study groups at St. Andrew’s and has done a placement with Rosedale Presbyterian Church.  Welcome Brett!

We are also welcoming back Elizabeth Ferrer as the Nursery Coordinator.  Elizabeth has worked with us for several years and brings a background in Early Childhood Education and teaching.  We are delighted to have her in the nursery again.

In-person programs for the Church School and the Nursery will begin on September 12 at 10:30 a.m.  For this week only, the children will meet in the Great Hall while youth members will join the rest of the congregation in the Sanctuary.

Beginning September 19th at 10:30 a.m.   The Nursery (0-2) will occupy Room 206 and the Church School (3-10) will meet in Room 207.  The Youth class will meet in the Board Room.

We follow all COVID-19 protocols of the provincial government and the St. Andrew’s Health and Safety Committee.  Children should be brought to their rooms and registered with contact information before 10:30am.  Parents and caregivers should pick up children at their rooms following the service.  Children can bring their own water bottles but should not bring their own toys or snacks.  All children JK and older and all adults will be required to wear masks and social distance.  Everyone entering the premises will be required to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer.

If you have any questions or would like to help out with the program, you can contact Brett at churchschool@standrewstoronto.org.

Please Note:  For any parents or guardians arriving after 10:30am, when the Simcoe Street doors will be locked, please call Brett Main’s cell phone and he will let you in.  If you do not already have Brett’s number, please contact him at:  churchschool@standrewstoronto.org

Church School Online:

Some of the children have been enjoying Church School at home.  Here is a selection of some their lessons….




Youth Gatherings (Ages 11 to 17)

This Fall, Youth will study the Nooma program and will meet in the boardroom at 10:30am on the 2nd, 4th and 5th Sundays of the Month.  On the 1st Sunday of the month they will join in worship in the sanctuary and on the 3rd Sunday of the month they will assist in the Nursery and Church School.  We will continue to monitor and adapt all our programs and protocols as necessary.


For Parents or Caregivers:

If you have any comments or questions about these in person programs or other programs for children and youth, please contact Brett Main, the Faith Formation Coordinator for Children and Youth at  churchschool@standrewstoronto.org


Volunteering Opportunities (18 up)

We are looking for volunteers interested in becoming part of our team for 2021-22 (Sept-June), here some of our positions:

  1. Nursery Assistants: Assistant to Nursery coordinator on Sunday mornings for ages 0 to 3
  2. Church School Leaders:Leading Children’s gatherings via zoom and/or support weekly lessons for ages 4 to 12
  3. Youth Leaders:Leading youth group (ages 11 to 17) via zoom/virtual gatherings or in-person, small group activities and/or events
  4. Intergenerational Annual Event Volunteer-Advent&Christmas Season- members interested in helping with the preparations for the Christmas Pageant and/or during the Christmas Play (November-December 2021).

For all volunteers interested in working with children and youth ministries, we require a minimum of one time a month commitment and you must successfully pass the application process to work with vulnerable populations. Volunteers interested in the annual event must submit an application to work with vulnerable populations. Please contact Judy Neal at jneal@standrewstoronto.org or Rev. Bob Faris at b.faris@standrewstoronto.org

Parents Resources

The Synod of Central, Northeastern Ontario and Bermuda is committed to supporting and resourcing congregations and presbyteries so that all of our churches might thrive. Tori Smit serves as the Regional Minister for Faith Formation. Visit Tori’s blog for the latest resources and ideas  www.cnob.org


Hope and Reconciliation in Isaiah

Sunday Morning Bible Study has now resumed.  Please note the new time of 9:00am.  Participants can join in person in the Boardroom or by Zoom.  All COVID protocols will be followed in the in-person session.  If you are new to the Sunday Bible Study and would like to join by Zoom, please contact Rev. Faris.

This Fall we will be using a resource from the Kerygma series which looks at major themes in the second part of the Book of Isaiah.  Often referred to as the “Fifth Gospel” Isaiah presents a vision of hope and reconciliation for God’s people who have returned from exile in Babylon.  They are themes that are significant for both Jews and Christians and in the Church are often interpreted in light of the Incarnation.  They are also themes that resonate with us in our world that is so in need of hope and reconciliation.  Join us for this exciting series!

We will be using a resource book that is available to participants for $35.  If you require any assistance with this cost, please let us know.  To register and purchase a resource book, contact Rev. Faris at b.faris@standrewstoronto.org.


Who’s in Your Family Tree?

Jesus’ genealogy in Matthew’s gospel usually just gets passed over as a long list of names.  But like most family trees, it contains some interesting information and we discover some people we might not have expected to find there.  We will pay special attention to the women we find in the genealogy: Sarah (not named), Ruth, Bathsheba (not named), Tamar and Mary. The Study will run on Thursday evenings for five weeks, starting October 21 and finishing on November 18.  We will begin at 6:30 and finish by 8 pm.  You can attend in person in the Board Room (you must be fully vaccinated) or via zoom.  Please register at:

2020 St. Andrew’s Church Study Award

Congratulations to our two recipients, Brett Main and Florence MacGregor.

Brett is a student at Knox College and has been certified as a candidate for Ministry of Word and Sacraments by the Presbytery of East Toronto.

Florence is a student in the Masters of Pastoral Studies program at Emmanuel College and will be graduating this year.

Both are active participants in the life of St. Andrew’s.  Congratulations to them both.

Sunday Forums

Sunday Forums are held at noon following worship and continue throughout the year. We offer speakers who bring us information, insight and their expertise on a variety of topics that, we hope, you will find both interesting and useful.

2020 Forums offered the following:

Mental Health in the Time of COVID

Thank you to all who joined us for an on-line Sunday Forum on November 29 at 11:30am with Kate McGee, the Executive Director and Chaplain of Boarding Homes Ministry.  In these extraordinary times, we all face stresses and challenges which we have not had to confront before.  Kate spoke about taking care of our own mental health and recognizing challenges that others face as well.

If you did not have the chance to join us on the 29th you may watch Kate’s forum at: https://youtu.be/xE5MqYxgU2E 


Theology and Ecology

Thank you to all who joined us for an on-line Sunday Forum on October 25,2020 at 11:30 when Hannah Scanlon spoke about the intersection of “Theology and Ecology” – the focus of her doctoral research at the Toronto School of Theology.

You can find out more about Hannah by listening to her “Faces of Faith” interview on the YouTube recording of the service for October 4.  https://youtu.be/8zafFyFqOcs


2019 Forums offered the following:

  • The Rev. Dr. Kristine O’Brien joined us on our 189th anniversary Sunday and brought us up to date on what is happening at Crieff Hills Retreat Centre.
  • The Presbyterian World Service and Development (PWS&D) was represented by both Susan Viegas and Kristen Winters, who spoke about the life-enhancing work of PWS&D and specifically about their recent Monitoring and Evaluation mission to Ghana.

2018 Forums covered such topics as:

  • “Evolution in the Works” whereby Toshio Ushiroguchi-Pigott presented a tour of the Don Valley Brick Works as an eco-tourist destination
  • A presentation by the members of the group who participated in the congregational exchange visit to Trinidad and the celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Presbyterian Church of Trinidad and Tobago.
  • Kate McGee, Executive Director and Chaplain of Boarding Homes Ministry, spoke about the legacy of the late Rev. Rodger Hunter and all the new things happening under her leadership.
  • Maria Hadzis, the National Volunteer Coordinator of Prison Fellowship Canada (PFC) spoke about PFC’s vision and mission in light of Jesus’ words in Matthew 25.  She also discussed the church’s role in restorative justice and challenged us to examine how we are fulfilling Jesus’ mandate to love “the least of these”.
  • Vivian Kwok from the “Our Doors are Open” project at the Ontario College of Art and Design University spoke about what it means to be part of a sacred space that is accessible to all.