Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Arthur Newey Thompson (1929-2004)

Cleric, columnist, author.

Born at Toronto, Ontario on 4 January 1929, son of Arthur Chinnock Thompson (1897-1969) and Grace Louise Pearce (1895-1976), he received his early education in the Toronto public schools and earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto (Trinity College) in 1952. He then studied divinity at Wycliffe College, and after graduation was ordained into the Anglican Church of Canada on 1 May 1955. He then completed a three-year curacy under Rev. Robert Dann at St. George’s Anglican Church-on-the-Hill in Islington, Toronto. At that point the opportunity presented itself to join the DEW Line as a Protestant chaplain for the eastern Arctic. For one-and-a-half years, he travelled from site to site, from the eastern tip of Baffin Island to Cambridge Bay, visiting the personnel and taking services.

In 1959, he moved to England to write a doctoral thesis on the history of the Church in western Canada. It was at St. John’s College Cambridge that he met Gwyneth Mary Hawkins (1934-2014), whom he married on 1 October 1960 and later had three children. They moved back to Toronto in 1962, and in 1964 he became Rector of St. John’s Anglican Church in Kingston. He moved to Winnipeg in April 1969 to become Rector of St. George’s Anglican Church. His final parish appointment was at St. Philip’s Anglican Church from which he retired in 1995.

For almost a decade, he contributed a column on religion to the Winnipeg Tribune. He also wrote several books for church laypeople and sometimes volunteered as a priest-in-charge in places as far afield as Timmins, Ontario. His last such appointment was at St. Chad’s Anglican Church at Winnipeg. He took a special interest in clerical education and was a tireless fundraiser. He served for almost forty years as a trustee of Wycliffe College, was an honorary Doctor of Divinity of the University of Emmanuel College in Saskatoon, and a Canon of St. John’s Anglican Cathedral in the Diocese of Rupertsland. He was a life-long scholar, with a special interest in history and served as a reserve officer in the Royal Canadian Navy for more than a quarter century.

He died at Winnipeg on 26 March 2004 and was buried in the St. John’s Anglican Church Cemetery at York Mills, Ontario.

Sources:

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 30 March 2004.

“Arthur Newey Thompson,” Thompson McMullen Family Tree, Ancestry.

Arthur Newey Thompson,” FindAGrave.

This page was prepared by Lois Braun.

Page revised: 7 March 2021

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. We acknowledge that the collection contains both reputable and disreputable people. All are worth remembering as a lesson to future generations.

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