BELLEVILLE – After exactly 37 years of service, Rev. David Mundy is preparing to retire on June 30.
Mundy, 62, has been the lead minister at Bridge Street United Church  for only four years, but has been a part of the United Church of Canada since he was ordained at 25 years old.
Rev. Mundy grew up in Southern Ontario and graduated from the University of Toronto in a master of divinity program. He lead various congregations before arriving in Belleville several years ago, including some in Newfoundland and Nova Scotia.
“Churches are marvellous places for people to come together. For worship on Sunday morning, but also to come for that purpose of reaching out to others and caring for others,” he said when asked about what he is going to miss most about Bridge Street United.
After the worship service this past Sunday, members of the church talked about how his retirement is going to affect them.
“I am going to miss his presence in the room. He clearly commands the room – he has a soft, gentle but clear nature,” said Mitchell Cox, the music director at Bridge Street.
Over the last several years, Mundy has made a difference both in his congregation and in the community by leading worship every Sunday, but also introducing services such as Inn From The Cold  and End of the Month Meal programs that are available for everyone in need.
“One of the spurs and stimuli that Rev. David has brought to the church is being a mission church rather than an institutional church,” said Ian Sutherland, a parishioner.
Mundy says one of his proudest accomplishments is being heavily involved in the program to settle Syrian refugees. He said the idea surfaced after the now famous photo of the young Syrian boy on the beach flooded social media.
Bridge Street United currently sponsors a family who first starting arriving in December of 2015.
“We realized once the family was here and established, that they had 18 other family members still in Lebanon,” said Mundy.
The last family of five out of the total 23 members will be arriving in Belleville on Valentine’s Day, and Mundy said it isn’t stopping there.
“We now know the grandparents are coming right around the beginning of March. So all 23 will make their way to Canada which is wonderful,” he said.
Although the services that Mundy has helped introduce have made a positive impact on the community, parishioner Kay Summers says the thing that she will miss most is his overall character.
“He is such a caring person with a warm personality. He cares for every person in this congregation. He knows us all by name and he’s just been a delight to have in this congregation. We’ve been very lucky and we’re going to miss him very much.”
He said his proudest accomplishment throughout his life as a minister is the fact that he has been able to maintain family relationships regardless of his other community and religious commitments. He has three children, and one of his sons followed in his footsteps and is currently a minister in London, Ont.
Mundy is retiring earlier than he had originally planned to while he still has his health and energy. He plans to travel out to Atlantic Canada with his wife and spend more time outdoors hiking and canoeing.