The Canaan Congregational Church has been graced with a rich diversity of theological leaders. Most recently Rev. Patty Fox was our Designated Term Pastor, serving both Canaan and the West Stockbridge UCC churches. She shepherded us through virtual, outdoor, and hybrid worship required by the pandemic. Under her leadership, following an Appreciative Inquiry study, Creating Space Arts and Spirituality Collective was born. Rev. Fox accepted a full-time position in Camden Maine in early 2022.
Rev. Patty Fox came to us in June of 2020 following the sudden and unexpected death of Rev. Dr. Charles Close in April of 2020. Pastor Charlie was with us for the tumultuous time of the electrical fire that burned our church and the discernment that followed, culminating with the building of our new facility. We are grateful he lived to see the achievement of the new sanctuary he championed and led worship there for several months before the pandemic forced closure of all public places. Rev. Close was well known in the Conference, having served many churches in the New England area, and in many Conference-level positions including on the Board of Directors.
Rev. Mark Longhurst accepted his first call to the Canaan Congregational Church. During his years with us we enjoyed Taizé meditations, Theology on Tap at the local pub and we opened the Sanctuary Gallery, a venue for local artists held in the church building. He went on to serve full-time at the Williamstown Congregational Church for many years. A deeply contemplative theologian, he is now Managing Editor for Fr. Richard Rohr’s Center for Action and Contemplation’s Daily Meditations Team.