Less than two months after BSS was founded in 1867, the man for whom the school is named, Bishop John Strachan, died in Toronto and was honoured with one of the largest funeral processions the city had ever known. The first Anglican Bishop of Toronto is buried in St. James Cathedral, on King Street East.
It was at St. James Cathedral this past November 1 that BSS Head of School Judith Carlisle, alumna Rev. Mary LEWIS 1965 and BSS Chaplain Rev. Cathy Gibbs gathered with others to honour Bishop Strachan on the 150th anniversary of his death. The evening featured a variety of speakers, including Bishop Strachan himself (in the lively form of an actor), who shared poignant and candid reflections on his life, from his birth in Scotland, to starting up a private school in Kingston, ON, to his role standing up to American troops in 1863. “It was such an informative and entertaining evening,” says Judith. “We learned a lot about this forceful and dynamic character, and it was a wonderful chance for me, as a newcomer to this city, to meet an eclectic and engaging group of people.” Bishop John Strachan had a lifelong commitment to education and learning, with a deep love of books – traits our own students, some 150 years later, embrace at BSS. There is a plaque marking the site of Bishop Strachan’s home at Front and University, the office, as it happens, of past BSS parent Courtney Betty, who kindly spoke to us for an article in The Link. Learn more about Bishop Strachan on Historic Toronto’s site.