Moderator of the United Church of Canada

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The Moderator of the United Church of Canada is the most senior elected official within the United Church of Canada. He or she may be a lay person or a member of the Order of Ministry and is elected to a three-year term by commissioners attending the church's triannual General Council. The current Moderator is the Right Reverend Dr. Carmen Lansdowne, who was elected to the office at the 44th General Council in July 2022, [1] and installed on August 7, 2022.



The Moderator's authority exists by his or her ability to influence the direction of the denomination, rather than any sort of direct power to unilaterally enact changes. Duties of the Moderator include:

History of the office

When the United Church of Canada was founded in 1925, General Councils were biannual, giving each moderator a two-year term of office. (The first exception was the first moderator, George C. Pidgeon, who only served for one year. The second was the 43rd moderator, Richard Bott, who had his term extended to four years when the 44th General Council was postponed by one year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. [3] ) At the 1994 General Council, the commissioners voted to make General Councils triannual, thus increasing the moderator's term to three years. [4]

Although most moderators have been ordained ministers, this is not a requirement of office, and to date, four moderators have been lay persons. If the moderator is ordained, he or she is styled the "Right Reverend" while in office, and the "Very Reverend" afterwards.

Current and past Moderators

TermIndividualGeneral CouncilLocation
2022 to Present Carmen Lansdowne 44thVancouver BC
2018–2022 Richard Bott 43rdOshawa, ON
2015-2018 Jordan Cantwell 42ndCorner Brook, NL
2012-2015 Gary Paterson 41stOttawa, ON
2009-2012 Mardi Tindal 40thKelowna, BC
2006-2009 David Giuliano 39thThunder Bay, ON
2003-2006 Peter Short 38thWolfville, NS
2000-2003 Marion Pardy 37thToronto, ON
1997-2000 Bill Phipps 36thCamrose, AB
1994-1997 Marion Best 35thFergus, ON
1992-1994 Stan McKay 34thFredericton, NB
1990-1992 Walter H. Farquharson 33rdLondon, ON
1988-1990 Sang Chul Lee 32ndVictoria, BC
1986-1988 Anne M. Squire 31stSudbury, ON
1984-1986 Robert F. Smith 30thMorden, MB
1982-1984 W. Clarke MacDonald 29thMontreal, QC
1980-1982 Lois M. Wilson 28thHalifax, NS
1977-1980 George M. Tuttle 27thCalgary, AB
1974-1977 Wilbur K. Howard 26thGuelph, ON
1972-1974 Bruce McLeod 25thSaskatoon, SK
1971-1972 Arthur B. B. Moore 24thNiagara Falls, ON
1968-1971 Robert Baird McClure 23rdKingston, ON
1966-1968 Wilfred C. Lockhart 22ndWaterloo, ON
1964-1966 Ernest M. Howse 21stSt. John's, NL
1962-1964 James R. Mutchmor 20thLondon, ON
1960-1962 Hugh A. McLeod 19thEdmonton, AB
1958-1960 Angus J. MacQueen 18thOttawa, ON
1956-1958 James S. Thomson 17thWindsor, ON
1954-1956 George Dorey 16thSackville, NB
1952-1954 Alexander A. Scott 15thHamilton, ON
1950-1952 Clarence M. Nicholson 14thToronto, ON
1948-1950 Willard E. Brewing 13thVancouver, BC
1946-1948 Thomas W. Jones 12thMontreal, QC
1944-1946 Jesse H. Arnup 11thLondon, ON
1942-1944 John R. P. Scalter 10thBelleville, ON
1940-1942 Aubrey S. Tuttle 9thWinnipeg, MB
1938-1940 John W. Woodside 8thToronto, ON
1936-1938 Peter Bryce 7thOttawa, ON
1934-1936 Richard Roberts 6thKingston, ON
1932-1934 T. Albert Moore 5thHamilton, ON
1930-1932 Edmund H. Oliver 4thLondon, ON
1928-1930 William T. Gunn 3rdWinnipeg, MB
1926-1928 James Endicott 2ndMontreal, QC
1925-1926 George C. Pidgeon 1stToronto, ON

Source: [5]

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  1. "United Church elects Carmen Lansdowne as 1st Indigenous woman to lead a religious denomination in Canada" . Retrieved July 25, 2022.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "The Manual" (PDF). United Church of Canada. 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 11, 2013. Retrieved August 17, 2012.
  3. "General Council 44 Has Been Postponed".
  4. "Overview: Historical Timeline". The United Church of Canada. March 3, 2010. Archived from the original on November 29, 2010. Retrieved March 10, 2010.
  5. "Record of Proceedings of the 42nd General Council, 2015" (PDF). The United Church of Canada. United Church of Canada. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 2, 2017. Retrieved January 21, 2017.