Thomas Woolsey was born into a religious family-both his mother and
father were devout and his uncle, Reverend William Woolsey was an important
figure in the Methodist church. It was not until he was 17, however, that
Thomas Woolsey became an
active member of the church. Within a year he had
taken his first steps toward becoming a local preacher.
He subsequently moved to London and, while apprenticing to become a
printer, was accepted as a member in the
City Road Circuit, the head church of Methodism, where he served as a
preacher and class leader for the next 10 years. He was not
content to stay in London preaching to the converted, however, and soon made
plans to become a missionary.
Ordained at the same time as Ojibway missionary
Henry Bird Steinhauer,
the two young priests travelled to Western Canada to become the second
Methodist missionary team in the Saskatchewan District.