The number of acolytes was increased during Mr. McGann's rectorship, and all the pews in the church were declared free. The latter change is a far cry from William Pynchon's day, when a person was fined, if lie did not occupy the seat to which he was assigned.
The Sunday School was reorganized and renamed, The Church School. Mrs. Thomas Moxon was the first Director of Religious Education. It was in no small measure due to her splendid work and trained leadership during the difficult transition period, that this organization, which had contributed in inestimable measure to the spiritual growth of the parish, adopted successfully modern methods of study and administration.
A great national movement, the Nation Wide Campaign, with its every member canvass, and a great international horror, the World War, changed in great measure, the routine life of Christ Church, throughout the first years of Mr. McGann's rectorship. The part taken by our Bishop, our Rector, Assistant Minister and parishioners in the war is told in detail in another part of this work.
Easter Day, 1917, was memorable in the history of Christ Church. A record congregation was in attendance. The vestibule of both Church and Parish House, the sacristy, and the aisles were crowded with worshipers. There were about 1200-1300 persons present. During the sermon Mr. McGann asked the congregation to take a forward step and to abstain from the beverage use of alcohol during the period of the war. There was a moment's pause and then the entire assemblage rose to its feet and so pledged themselves. This was one of the few congregations in our Communion that made such a pledge and the event was given the widest publicity by the church and secular press. Mr. McGann received some hundreds of letters commending this action.
That Christ Church might have the first-hand knowledge, help, and inspiration derived from the personalities of well known exponents of modern religious thought in the Church,