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Church History

In the fall of 1881, S.C. Grab preached the first sermon of the Rye Evangelical United Brethren Church at Miss Annie Blasser’s house on the Old Nipissing Road in Rye, Ontario. It was not until 1884 that the first spiritual class was formed and the church was officially recognized. The first recognized pastor was C. Bolender.  His descendants were at the first worship service of Almaguin Evangelical Missionary Church, which is the continuing ministry of Rye Evangelical United Brethren (E.U.B.). In 1894, the first church was built in Rye on land donated by the McLaren family. It was a log structure that in later years was covered in siding.  They had a wood stove for heat.  In 1895 the church cemetery was started. In 1968 the E.U.B. in the United States merged with the United Methodist Church.  In eastern Canada it merged with the United Church.  In the west the merger was voted down, and the E.U.B went on its own taking the name Evangelical Church. They started talks with the Missionary Church of Canada on a merger.  The Missionary Church of Canada and the Evangelical Church officially merged in 1993, although they unofficially worked together for quite a few years before this. Rye E.U.B. voted not to join the United Church.  They ended up suspending operations but not closing the church.  In the early 1980s, the Rye congregation convinced Rev. George Peck to come back and pastor the church.  He was a pastor of the Rye E.U.B. before  the merger and had transferred his credentials to the Missionary Church.  In 1982 he held the first service of what would become known as the Almaguin Evangelical Missionary Church.  The first resolution passed by the church was that the name of the church was to be Almaguin Evangelical Missionary Church and to be known as the continuing ministry of Rye E.U.B.  All members of Rye E.U.B. became members of Almaguin Evangelical Missionary Church. On May 5 1989, the current church building in South River was dedicated to the ‘Glory of God’.  It is here that the body of Christ known as Almaguin Evangelical Missionary Church meets for worship and fellowship.