More than 130 members, friends and visitors gather at the William Pouchie Memorial United Church in North Side Sunday to celebrate the church’s anniversary.
But obviously missing from the programme was the year being celebrated.
That’s because there are several key dates that link the forerunning Presbyterian Church to the Cayman Islands and North Side.
The Rev. Thomas Redpath was one of the original ministers who oversaw the Presbyterian Church, serving from 1896 until 1908, which means North Side congregants were meeting 116 years ago. But the first North Side Presbyterian Church was erected in 1903, setting the anniversary at 109 years. Then again, the first Cayman minister, Rev. William Pouchie of North Side, was appointed to succeed Mr. Redpath in 1909, putting the anniversary date at 103 years. But then again, the first Presbyterian ministers, which included Rev. James Elmslie – for whom the harbour front United Church is named – arrived in 1846, making the church’s foundation here 166 years old.
The William Pouchie Memorial United Church is a congregation of the United Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands (Presbyterian, Congregational, Disciples of Christ).
Services included a history of the church, recounted by North Side MLA and church member Ezzard Miller, special songs, scripture readings, Rev. Rohan Forrester’s sermon titled Remember, Rejoice and Rededicate – followed by a re-dedication liturgy from the minister and congregation.
Also participating in the services were Lay Pastor Ormond Williams and Rev. Arthur Henriquez and former ministers Rev. Godfrey Meghoo, and Rev. Otto Menko.
Coffee and nibbles followed the service in the Fellowship Hall.