Monday, March 15, 2010

The Blind River Bethune Connection

St. Andrews: Bethune Connection

St. Andrews United Church stands on the corner of Center Street and Michigan Ave and over it's better than 100 years of existence has witnessed a lot of history.

What is not commonly known is that Dr. Norman Bethune, the Canadian physician who invented the mobile blood transfusion system, a variety of surgical instruments and a man who attained near sainthood status in China, lived in Blind River as a child. His father was the Rev. Malcolm Nicolson Bethune a Prebyterian minister. In 1907 he served as minister at St. Andrews. Norman would have attended the local school.

In 1925 St. Andrews church changed when 70 percent of members of the Presbyterian Church of Canada joined the United Church of Canada.