Introduction

From its inception, The Peoples Church has been steadfast in this one purpose: spreading the good news of Jesus Christ, here, and around the globe. We have always lived beyond our street address.

The Peoples Church has moved four times since it was founded. Through these moves, we have openly declared our dependence on God.

In late 2017, The Peoples Church received a letter of an intent from a developer outlining their desire to purchase our current property at 374 Sheppard Avenue East. We turn to God in this opportunity to seek his wisdom, discernment, and unity.

Massey Hall

1928 – 1930

Oswald J. Smith had pastored at several churches and regularly held mission conferences at Massey Hall. It was during this time he received the call to plant a church with a globally-minded, gospel-centred mission.

Gerrard Street

1933 – 1934

Having seen the conferences held at Massey Hall grow, Smith moved into this building and formed The Peoples Church. Still with a strong emphasis on mission but now with a permanent home.

Bloor Street East

1934 – 1962

After outgrowing their current church home, The Peoples Church moved to 100 Bloor Street East where the congregation continued to increase in numbers.

374 Sheppard Avenue East

1962 – Present

Seeing that Toronto was growing rapidly to the north, The Peoples Church purchased property at 374 Sheppard Avenue East and constructed a church. Today it remains largely unchanged from its original design and the city has blossomed around it.

1121 Leslie Street

Home of Sony Canada’s head offices, 1121 Leslie Street is currently a vacant lot zoned for commercial or place of worship usage. In close proximity to Thorncliffe, where more newcomers to Canada settle than anywhere else, it is currently ready to be built on.

The Opportunity

374 Sheppard Avenue East

  • We are established in this neighbourhood
  • None of the work required to move
  • $8-10 million investment needed to bring this building for maintenance and upgrades
  • Close to the 401, on a major street and close to a subway stop
  • About 30% of our congregation live within 5 kilometres of the church, it is their neighbourhood church

1121 Leslie Street

  • Larger property with more room for ministry and parking
  • Ability to build to suit our needs
  • A move that will include working with the city, builders and new neighbours
  • Occupancy at 374 Sheppard Avenue East until new building is move-in ready
  • Sufficient resources to build and have some left over

We Pray

As a congregation, we’ll pray and seek God’s direction. Together we’ll pray for:

WISDOM

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.
James 3:17

Discernment

9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.
Philippians 3:9-11

Unity

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
Ephesians 4:2-6

FAQs

Who are the developers?
Metrus Properties currently owns 1121 Leslie Street. They are a local development company, founded in 1972 with over 15 million square feet of industrial, retail and office space.
How will a decision be made whether to move or stay?
Since receiving the letter of intent from the developers, we have been asking God for wisdom, discernment and unity. In late June 2018 our board of directors will meet to decide whether we are being led to move or stay.
How long has this been under consideration?
The church received an initial offer in late 2017. The church regularly receives offers to buy this property but often they do not include the provisions that have been included in this offer.
What could the building be like?
If the decision is made to move, due diligence will be taken to find the right architect and determine what a new building would feature and look like. However we can safely say it would have more lobby space.
How might this affect parking?
The amount of parking spaces will be approximately double. In addition, a main transfer station that is part of the Eglinton LRT will be located just a few hundred metres from the new property and both north and southbound bus routes have stops directly outside of the new property.
If we move, when would it happen?
If we decide to move, the most likely date is sometime in 2021.
What could the developer potentially use 374 Sheppard Avenue East for?
Most likely it will become a mixed residential/commercial development.