“My prayer is that, as you celebrate the past and look forward to the future, God would continue to direct your path in advancing the kingdom,” challenged Lt-Colonel Susan van Duinen on the opening of the new Etobicoke Temple in Toronto in November. Lt-Colonel van Duinen, divisional commander, Ontario Central-East Division, led the weekend of celebrations, supported by Majors Kester and Kathryn Trim, corps officers, and Major Roxanne Jennings, area commander, Ontario Central-East Division.

Despite frigid weather, the Saturday ribbon-cutting and stone-laying ceremony attracted a hardy group of congregants. Toronto city Councillor Doug Ford assisted with the ribbon-cutting and was joined by Toronto Mayor Rob Ford for the tour of the facility that followed.

A dinner was held that evening, featuring music from the Yorkminster Songsters, Laotian musicians and the Etobicoke Temple Band. The band led with the march Etobicoke Celebration, accompanied by visuals of the temple's demolition and construction.

On Sunday, Lt-Colonel van Duinen spoke on “being the temple of God.” The service also included a senior soldier enrolment and a period of rededication.

The $5.6-million project will serve both corps and community, with a large worship centre and ample space for community and recreational services, including music and gospel arts rooms, a kitchen, classrooms and a gymnasium. With a new closed-circuit television system, the church can accommodate up to 900 people.

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