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Mill Pond Medical Centre receives special blessing

December 22, 2018   ·   0 Comments

By Wendy Gabrek

The Mill Pond Medical Building received a blessing on Thursday, December 13, from Rev. Kim McArthur.

The purpose of the blessing was to recognise the benefit to the community, celebrate the accomplishment of the completion of the building, and to acknowledge the ability to serve the community through the medical offerings of the collective residents.

Rev. McArthur, of St. Andrew Anglican Church, told The Times, “We are blessing this building by asking God to protect the people who work here, and make the grounds on which this building sits sacred. This will bring the Peace of God to the space, so that God may work through these people, in the various ways they work, and help to meet the great needs of the community.”

Rev. McArthur was accompanied by Deacon Pam Alderson, and said she wrote the blessing specific for the purpose of blessing the Mill Pond.

The blessing was commissioned by building Project Manager Antonio Leal said he was pleased to have been open during construction, and wished to acknowledge the work that had gone into making this six year project a reality.

Leal, who saw the Mill Pond from conception, through permit stages, drafting and construction, also advocated for a medical building at Kingsmere Retirement several years ago.

“How and why things come about is unknown,” he said, referring to a sequence of events – and people coming together, almost cosmically – to make his dream a reality.

Leal thanked community members, such as Kate Mooij, and the doctors to took residency in his building. He also quoted Susan Gail, saying, “All good things are worth waiting for.”

Town of New Tecumseth Mayor, Rick Milne, thanked Leal for his contributions to the community, and said, “I am so happy for you Tony. You took it, and you carried it through. We are so blessed to have this new medical centre, and all of our residents are so happy.”

Rudy Steinmar then spoke from a patient’s perspective.

“This is the season of love, peace and good will to all and I cannot think of many places that are dispensing more of that,” said Rudy. “I cannot think of any other organization that not only prescribes but also practices love, peace, compassion, patience and understanding than the medical profession of which the pharmacist is a partner.

“Speaking from experience, as my wife, during her illness was a recipient of this care, love and compassion and after her passing in May of this year, I became a recipient of this love and compassion during my days of grieving. And when you see pictures of war-torn countries around the world, it is the medical profession who risk their lives to help, heal and fully engage in providing love and compassion, in addition to medical expertise, at the risk of their own suffering. And often with nothing else available but love, care and compassion which in my opinion is foremost on the mind of every medical practitioner…We as Canadians of this great country and this wonderful community of New Tecumseth are very blessed to have this medical centre as well as Stevenson Memorial Hospital and, not to forget, when everything else fails, we have Matthews House Hospice.”

Author and historian, Ralph E. Braden spoke on the history of the building property, and stated, “As a local historian I am always eager to be present where new history is taking place in and around my home town of Alliston.”

“This fine building overlooks the part of the Boyne River where Alliston’s founder, William Fletcher, dammed the water to create the mill pond, which would provide the source of the power for the town’s first industry, a saw mill which turned the virgin forest into building materials. The year was 1848.

“When the founder was laying out the streets of the little village in the forest he set aside locations for basic necessities that the settlers would need in addition to the mill. He wanted to attract a blacksmith, a store keeper, a carpenter, a teacher, a clergy person, some pioneer farmers and labourers. Once these were in place he had high hopes of attracting a medical person and a druggist. With the passage of time, all of his dreams came true.”

Alliston, named for Fletcher’s hometown in Yorkshire, England, was home to many great medical minds, including Sir Fredrick Banting, the co-founder of insulin (for which he won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1923); and Sir William Osler, the first chief of staff at the famous John Hopkins Hospital in 1893. Without the arrival of the railroad in 1905, and the development of the hospital in June, 1928, it is uncertain where the town would be today.

Rev. McArthur gave the blessing following the commentary.

“I am an Anglican Priest which is Christian and I know we are a gathering of many faiths here today,” she began, not knowing when she wrote her words that the building had been a Mormon Church in previous days, and therefore the ground was already hallow.

“Today I have been given the honour and privilege of coming to pray God’s blessing upon you, and to ask his favour and blessing upon this place, which is sacred.

“We stand on hallowed ground, people enter this place coming in their vulnerability, in their hopes and in their fears, in their weakness and strength. As they look to you and your healing expertise, your God given gifts and your generosity of spirit in sharing yourself for their help.”

“…May this medical centre become known, far and wide, as a special place where the professionals are known for their great skill, compassion, kindness and help. May all who enter seeking help feel your peace Lord God that passes all understanding, eve through the valleys of the shadow of death, up and into the hills of great glory, restoration and hope…”

“And finally, God of life and love, knit this medical team into one. As you come together in your healing endeavours may your strength be magnified in its unity. May your healing team always be one that walks in unity and strength, support and kindness to one another…”

Rev. McArthur then blessed the building by anointing it with holy water and placing the sign of the cross on the front door.

“Let us mark the entrance with a holy anointing. God is our beginning and our end, may God accompany all in their going out and their coming in.”

Following the blessing guests were invited to stay for refreshments and camaraderie.


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