Donald MacDonald

Donald MacDonald died this evening at home surrounded by his loving family.

Donald was an internationally renowned veterinarian who joined our church twenty-five years ago along with his late wife Carol-Ann and daughter Meredith. During his years with us Don served on several boards and chaired the Board of Finance and Administration.

After the passing of Carol-Ann, Don met and married Judy Gerred at the church. Together they rediscovered love and joy in each other’s company and we rejoiced as they shared their gifts and talents so freely in the fellowship of the church. We all treasured Don’s warmth, kindness and humour. Don and Judy were appreciated as leaders of our annual pilgrimage of sacred spaces and Don was also deeply grateful for his regular luncheons with a small group of men from the church.

But perhaps it was his remarkably positive response to the health challenges he faced in recent years that made the greatest impression on all of us. When John Fenton led our Coldest Night of the Year charity walk for the Yonge Street Mission again this year he informed the church that he was dedicating the walk to Don MacDonald who was his inspiration for the way he keeps fighting his illness with a smile and encouraging others along the way. It was hard to fight back the tears that day, because John was so right. Don truly was an inspiration to all of us and we thank God for him.

Don loved jazz and there have been times in the life of our church when great artists like Jackie Richardson, Guido Basso and John McDermott have all payed tribute to him for his friendship and support.

In the end Don spoke openly about his death and being ready to meet the Lord. He gave testimony to his faith and what a difference it had made in his life. We give thanks that our faith makes a difference not only in life but also in death. For Christ has conquered the grave and carries us home to the Father’s House.

Don’s roots were in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and he loved Cape Breton’s Song of the Mira which ends with these wonderful words of promise;

Now I’ll conclude with a wish you go well:
Sweet be your dreams—and your happiness swell.
I’ll leave you here, for my journey begins;
I’m going to be with them again,
I’m going to be with them again.

We will be together again.  Let us continue to keep Judy, Meredith, David and Gavin and the whole family in our prayers.  A memorial will be held at a date to be determined.

May this dear friend rest in peace and rise in glory.

In Christ,
Peter Holmes