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Perspectives by Rev. Duncan Perry



Peace, Is It Possible?

I’ve been thinking about peace a lot lately. I’m not sure why. It may be because several of my family have been experiencing some serious health problems. I expect that happens as a family ages. It may be because my wife and I are going through a significant transition in our lives. Whatever it is, I pray for peace for all involved.

I was reading my Bible, as I do every day, and a verse from the letter Paul writes to the Colossians seemed to grab my attention. It is found in chapter three verse 15. It says, “Let the peace of God rule in your heart.” I began to meditate on that, and I would like to share today what came to my mind.

In my dictionary the word ‘rule’ has the following meaning: to exercise authority or dominion. These are words that really got me thinking.

We all face crisis in our lives, we go through tough times, a doctor breaks bad news to us, or we lose a spouse to death, or we get a notice that we no longer have a job. Can we, when we go through theses times, have peace?

I was reminded of the words of Jesus found in John’s gospel chapter 14, verse 27. “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you, not as the world gives do I give unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

Jesus spoke these words to His followers. They were experiencing turmoil in their lives. Jesus had told them that He was going away and they were distraught. Did they experience the peace He gave them? 

As we follow their lives through the Book of Acts, we find that indeed they did. Even though they were threatened, beaten, imprisoned and even put to death, we see peace reigning in their lives.

In the verse I mentioned in the beginning, what it really means for the one whose hope and trust is in the Lord Jesus Christ is, whatever we may experience in life, peace will override the fear, anxiety, doubt or uncertainty that may threaten us, because for the child of God, our peace is Christ who lives and reigns in us.

Is it realistic in our day? Yes, I believe it is.

Back in the 1800’s, a man by the name of Horatio Spafford, a business man in the United States, lost everything he had. So he put his wife and children on a steamship to send them home to England while he cared for the remaining details. 

On the voyage home, the ship hit an iceberg and went down. Only his wife from his family survived. His children drowned in the cold Atlantic waters. Upon passing the place of the disaster, Horatio was made aware that this was the place where his children had perished. We are told he went back to his cabin and penned the words of the well-known hymn.

When peace like a river attendeth my way,

When sorrows like sea billows roll,

Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,

It is well, it is well with my soul.

What could have caused bitterness, rather resulted in the composition of one of the greatest hymns ever sung. How could that be, you may ask? His heart was ruled by the peace of God. And that, my friends, is God’s will for every one of us. Why not ask Him to come in today and give you that peace.

Rev. Duncan Perry,


Pentecostal Tabernacle


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Mini rink in Morrisburg to fill the bill temporarily

Under the premise that something is better than nothing, Donnie Lewis, Manager of Recreation and Facilities for the Township of South Dundas has erected a small outdoor rink in Morrisburg for the enjoyment of the younger children of South Dundas.

The 32 by 56 foot long rink, which falls well short of a regulation ice surface for hockey, has been put in place at the west end of the arena, along Trillium Street.

Although the entrance, to what will be the ice surface, is currently located on the west ‘street’ side, Lewis is planning to relocate it to either the north or south end, for safety reasons. A safety net has also been erected.

Lewis says, the season was getting along and it was becoming apparent that a decision on a location for the outdoor rink in Morrisburg would not be forthcoming from the municipality.

He and Ben Macpherson, Recreation Program Coordinator for South Dundas, identified five possible locations only one of which seemed to get a favourable response. That was at the Morrisburg beach area, which Lewis,  says he felt was a bit out of the way and would be too open to the elements.

The other identified locations were between the two ball diamonds in the Waterfront Park, an area in the Earl Baker Park, in the greenbelt between Highway 2 and the Pinkus Plaza and behind the former Parks Building, just west of the arena.

The latter was the most favoured by Lewis as it is protected from the elements, has lighting, water and is close to the arena. 

Lewis says the current rink is just a temporary solution for this year, and that he has enough rink boards available to build a regulation size rink when a location is selected.

Previously the outdoor rink in Morrisburg was located on the south lawn of the old Morrisburg High School. “It was maintained for many years by John Schenk who did a fantastic job,” said Lewis. “John put a lot of long hard hours into maintaining the ice surface, and he transported a lot of water.”

The high school rink location had to be given up to make room for the revamping of the high school. At the time that it was dismantled, Lewis discovered that the boards were in very poor condition and could not be reused.

The boards for a new rink in Morrisburg have been completely rebuilt by students in the Cornwall College Blossoms program. This is a program that teaches students the trades through hands on experience.

“They came here and built four by eight foot board sections,” says Lewis. “We purchased the materials and they provided the labour. I believe there were 11 of them. It worked great for me, and it was great for them.”

“The new boards are made of recycled rubber which is five eighths of an inch thick. They should last forever. In fact we did the outdoor rink in Dundela in 1998, using the same material, and we haven’t had to do any maintenance on them.”

Lewis confirms that with the addition of the small rink in Morrisburg, South Dundas will have five outdoor rinks operating  this winter, weather permitting. They include the rink in Riverside Heights under the care of South Williamsburg Recreation, the rink in Williamsburg under the Williamsburg Recreation Association, the rink in Dundela under Wes Moore, the rink in Iroquois under Andy Majors, and now the rink in Morrisburg under Chris Phifer.

“Each of the rinks have their own schedules, and most are open at night and on the weekends,” says Lewis.

As for the Morrisburg mini-rink, he hopes that all children in South Dundas will make use of it. “I didn’t put it up for adult hockey, there just wasn’t enough space. But I put it up for the children of the township.”

Its size should lend itself nicely to younger skaters and to perhaps young hockey players who don’t need a big ice surface. Its location the arena’s west end shields it from wind, and also makes it convenient should the children wish to go indoors to get warm or enjoy a snack.



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New price tag for old high school


 South Dundas council met with the project managers and the contractor who will be renovating the former Morrisburg Collegiate Institute November 27, at a special council meeting to better pin down the cost of the renovation of the old high school.

From the new information and small project changes outlined in a post-tender addendum document that the project team has been preparing over the last couple of months, council now knows that the cost of the renovation project will be $4,093,882.

The team has been working to find savings within the project originally tendered at $3.8 million.

They identified areas of savings through small structural changes, such as keeping an existing stairwell, the use of metal siding on a small portion of the building and changing the elevator specifications.

The document also reflected changes to the project made by council that will add costs.

Council decided that they want the brick on the entire building re-pointed for the sake of both longevity and appearance, which is an added expense.

The project managers and contractor were asked to provide council with a more accurate cost estimate for abatement costs, and within the context of that work they found some added project expenses.

“We didn’t expect the abatement costs to be that high,” said Ron Rivet of True North Group, the project managers. 

“Asbestos was the least of our worries,” he said, explaining that almost $150,000 of abatement costs will have to be spent on mitigation measures for the lead paint, which is throughout the building.

The abatement costs for the asbestos in the building will be about $34,000.

Whether the building is renovated or demolished, the municipality is on the hook for the abatement costs.

“Actually, if you demolished the building it would be a much higher cost,” said Dick Markell, president of Bourgon Construction, the contractor hired to renovate the building. He estimated that in the case of demolition, the abatement costs would likely triple.

“What you will have when we are done is a building that is pretty close to new, and in some ways better than new,” said Markell explaining, “New buildings are not designed and built like this building was built.” According to Markell, the structure of this building is much like that of a hospital.

Once Bourgon Construction gets the official go ahead from council, likely in the form of a resolution at the December 3 council meeting, they expect the project to be complete in nine to 10 months.

“The structure’s up, so the hard part is done,” said Markell. “I’m hoping to get in the ground before Christmas. Getting the services in before the frost gives us a huge jump on the project.”

The contractor was asked about the handling of hazardous material, in close proximity to a public school.

“Anything that is air borne is tarped. We have industry standards that we have to follow,” said Markell. 

“Bourgon has an excellent safety record. That’s one of the reasons we chose them for this project,” said Rivet.