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The Churches of the Burgoyne Valley

churches of the Burgoyne Valley collage

Introduction by Chris Arnett.

Emily Hepburn (St. Paul’s)
Terri Manuck (St. Mary’s)
Sharon Hawke, Bev Cartwright (United Church)

“Going to Church”
Future Considerations

Accession Number 2005029001 Interviewer
Date October 12, 2005 Location
Media digital recording Audio CD
ID Duration




Unknown Speaker 0:00
have a meeting of the Historical Society tonight or today and we're really privileged to have four speakers from the three churches in the Fulford valley here, the Burgoyne Valley, whichever you like. And we heparins going to be speaking on a St Paul's Catholic Church, which was built about 1880 and concentrated 1885. And then Terry Manik. Aromatic will be speaking on St. Mary's Anglican Church directly across the road, which was built in 1894. And Bev Cartwright and Sharon Hawk will be discussing the history of the Bergling United Church, which is really called the union Church, which was built in 1887. by Charles Horrell before we begin, though, I just like to, to point out because these are free, you know, religious institutions that were established in the late 19th century, but I just like to remind people that valley has been of spiritual significance to, to people for 1000s of years. And we chose this picture to start out with showing St. Mary's in the foreground here and the mountain, Mount Maxwell, the original even mount Maxwell, at some, and it figures prominently in the mythology of the haka meeting, and speaking people, and it was a place of high spiritual significance featured in some of the one of the more important creation myths of this area. And so I just like to point out that continuity in religious traditions, it was, if you will, part of the the native Indian church, we look at just the next slide. And just to bring it up close to our times, I think it's significant, you know, we're this year, we are marking the 100 and 20th anniversary of the beginnings of St. Paul's, and the native people of this area. Were quite instrumental in the establishment of this church. I know that Emily will probably get more into this subject, but many of the, the architectural features of the church were brought from couch and bay from a place called Comey akin the old butter Church, which some of you may know, and it was brought here. Well, this this, this picture was taken may 10 1885, showing the concentration of the church and just recently, with the help of Frank Newman and the discovery by Emily have a really good print of the scene. As I've seen, it's familiar to many people. We're just beginning to, we're able to enlarge it and actually see who these people are, and we're beginning to identify some of them. I've made some tentative identifications. This gentleman here, this white guy, father, Don Kelly, who was very active in the Roman Catholic Church in the 18, late 19th century, on Saltspring, and particularly on keeper Island. This lady here, Barb may be your great grandmother, Susanna triggy. This gentleman may be Michael jaws. Dave Parris just informed me that like, a wife and daughter are up here on the steps. Bob Aikman, who all you know, is that his father, and this fellow wearing a white hat, these people over here the other day, I went through the Saltspring Island archives, and looked at some of the pictures of the Hawaiian people. And it's my feeling that women here, five sisters from the family of the now kind of family, so we have the Hawaiian people over here on the left, and a group of Native people here on the right, but we hope to identify all these people within the next few months or so. Anyway, so that's my little introduction and without further ado, because I know we're all anxious to go see the little churches I know myself, I've never haven't been in any of them. I'd like to turn it over to Emily and.

Unknown Speaker 4:46
I'll just go explain the format briefly so that you'll understand what our little up and down show here is. We've divided our presentation into a number of topics, and we will each speak on one topic and then move on to the next. So that as I say, there's a little bit of up and down here, but we thought it was made most sense to do it that way. We're going to start with the history of the three churches. And I'm going to repeat some of what Chris said, because if I leave it out, I'll get lost in my notes. The story of the construction of St. Paul has been told so often that there are numerous versions, whether the crossing to Saltspring was made in Raging waves, or in waters as calm as Sampson narrows ever gets. The basic story remains constant in the 1870s, visiting preset mass in the residence poems, the first being in the home of Mr. EJ Betancourt at his chapel in Vesuvius Bay in 1878. And it was in 1880, while father Don Caylee was the missionary priest ministering to the Gulf Islands, that the construction of St Paul's Church began. Since the largest population of Catholics lived in the South End Fulford harbour had been chosen for the church. James Mahoney from Genoa Bay was the contractor and Bill WIMS, one of the black settlers who had recently acquired property on Isabella point was the man responsible for clearing the land. He also worked for Joe as clearing his land to it's interesting to note that the five acres that belonged to the Catholic Church were donated by a John Shepard, which began a pattern of generosity via a non Catholics that has continued throughout the years. Mr. Betancourt along with a number of residents worked on the church and the list of those people. Kind of like the who's who of the Catholic registry, stick Purser John papen. Berger, John King, Michael childs senior John Maxwell, Joseph intead, a tremendous, as well as William McDonough and the other members of the Hawaiian families who had come north in the employ of the Hudson's Bay Company, and remained on on pre emptive land. Cowichan Indians were responsible for transporting much of the building supplies and furnishings from the abandoned St. Anne's Church in the couch and valley on Vancouver Island. And just imagine this site as canoes loaded with lumbers, doors, windows and an altar were transported through Samson narrows to Burgoyne Bay, a sudden change in weather may have made this crossing even more dramatic. And it fell to Bill Williams to transport these materials on a stone boat pulled by oxen through the valley up to the church site. Although some historians have included the church bell on the list of items brought from St. Anne's that matter is in debate, Bob believes that actually the bell had came at a later time. And one of these days when we have to go up on our church roof to shift the bell if someone rings the bell incorrectly, it has to someone have to go up there and turn it back again. So the next time that happens, I'm going to get them to read the date on the bell and hopefully clarify some of this story as to the David bells origins. It's doubtful that it even took five years to build the church, but it did take that long to get Charles sorry John Charles Segars the bishop to Fulford harbour in order to consecrate the church in 1885. Maybe he had heard some of those stories about paddling across the fence the narrow, however he did eventually make

Unknown Speaker 8:52
Well, I feel like cramming for a History test. And here it is, and you're all my examiner's. They Burgoyne Methodist union Church, the first Protestant church on Salt Spring Island, was built by Charles Horton during the spring and summer of 1887. The land was purchased from Mr. Arthur Robinson for $5. Mr. Robinson owed what was later the US farm and debt was then owned by the Capella. The Board of Trustees consisted of Edward Lee, Henry Pollard, David Jenkins, Henry Rocco, William for Edison, and Thomas Mowat. They were not all Methodist, but they believe that a church for all what's needed. The first missionaries who came to Salt Spring Island, were based in Nanaimo and came. Usually about every Every two months by canoe or by boat, towing a canoe, and that was about 40 miles. They then travel by foot, visiting the settlers, which took several days, then they would hold the service and administer the sacraments. Dr. Ebenezer Robinson was one of the first missionaries to visit Salt Springs. Now I know there's a bit of confusion as to whether he was the first or if there was another minister who was the first there. After several years of holding services in homes, he secured an old deserted and the word in the history is a log check. Which was built on a piece of land set apart by the governor of BC for public use. There is no mention of where this log and now I use the word cabin was

Unknown Speaker 11:13
nothing to say whether it was banned or Central or Okay, so maybe it was then at at Central. When this became too small to use, they held services in the school until the church was built.

Unknown Speaker 11:36
The church was dedicated on Sunday, August 28, by Dr. Robertson. In 1899, Saltspring on became a separate church. The island was served mainly by student ministers in the first years, it was probably not possible for the congregation to pay a minister with family and speaking of the early ministers, and we just stand up and it's the daughter of Reverend Allen, William Allen, who was the minister on Salt Springs from 1928 to 1933. So and and it's a member of CW and she's the youngest member we've got.

Unknown Speaker 12:38
A Parson nature was built in 1920. It was no longer used to house the ministers. So then it was rented out. The parsonage was sold in 1928 for $250. In 1920, Mrs. Margaret Reed organized the first ladies aid app for going now we you see W was originally called the ladies aid.

Unknown Speaker 13:14
And we became the United Church women.

Unknown Speaker 13:23
Thank you.

Unknown Speaker 13:37
I'm just going to tell you a little bit about the history of St. Mary. A couple of little things su mo told me to add to this is that when St. Marisa was first built, the minister used to come over and he used to sleep on the pew, which I expect was a little uncomfortable, and at some point, she said they built a shack on the property somewhere that had a little wooden bedstead in it. And he used to come and sleep on that when he stayed overnight. But I only found mention of that and one little thing and so I don't know if it's gospel in 1889, all this land on both sides of the road here with owned by Mr. John Sparrow, and his 19 year old son Baptist was shot and killed in a hunting accident. There's several versions of that. One was that it was a hunting accident. One was that it was pet glampers One that it was murdered because of somebody's pet lamping which I thought was pretty high price to pay for a deer but there was nowhere to bury him and so he donated one acre of land across the road for a cemetery to bury his son The church. They didn't start fundraising until Reverend Haslam began fundraising in the 1890s. And by 1894, he had raised $400 towards the building fund. And that year Reverend Wilson became Rector lumber was purchased and brought to Fulford harbored by scow from Victoria, where it was unloaded onto what is now drum and park beach. On Easter Monday, March the 26th 1894 16 volunteers with five teams of horses, moved the building materials to the church site. And contractor Fred Raines and his crew assembled the church in a in four months, and it was ready for consecration on June the third 1894. The total cost for the building materials, the seating, the chancel furnishings and the Oregon was $705. In 1899, the bell tower was built. In 1901, the church was painted white, and a stained glass window was installed. Now the story is that the stained glass window came from St. Mark's Church at Central because they had installed a new window called the Victoria window to celebrate Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee. If anybody knows any different, we'd like to hear from you. In 1902, the pulpit reading desk and lectern, added 1903 A new bell and a new organ were installed and the interior of the church was stained 1904 A chancel rail and carpet were put in 1937 The Women's Institute planted an oak tree grown from a Windsor Park acorn to celebrate the coronation of King George the sixth. Only two trees were planted here. One is at St. Mary's and one is still on the school grounds at what is now the Ganges elementary school. And I sat under that tree for many years and as did Duncan and everyone else who went to school again G. In 1944, the lich gate was built to commemorate St. Mary's Golden Jubilee. And it has since been rebuilt. I think also, there's a different Bell now to and that concludes our, our early history and I'm going to lead into furnishing them renovations and then turn it over to Beth. Probably in the early 80s The church was was jacked up raised and a new foundation was put under it because the foundations were rotten. A Sunday school room was added to the original church I think in the 50s because I went to Sunday school in there and I'd have been nine or 10 Goodness. The kitchen was installed by the guild in 1994 for St. Mary's 100th birthday. Oh, I see I've got St Mary's 1009 birthday. But actually it's 100 a flower and bought storage area and a toilet and sink have been added. Mr. J monk, built the font from Oak trees cut and dressed on his property at Beaver point. And when you go over have a look in the vestry because the stained glass windows were donated by the Emsley family in memory of David Ansley and they came from the old iron church, St. John's on Douglas Street in Victoria and they predate 1860 the pews came from the original old wooden cathedral chapel in Victoria. Thank you

Unknown Speaker 19:23
renovations, when the church was originally built the stove, I don't know if you have a picture of it. The stove was at the front of the church later and oil stove was in stall on the east side of the building. And the chimney was moved to that side. There was no cap on the chimney. So when the wind blew through the valley, there was a downdraft down the chimney and it filled the church with smoke. So they had to open all the windows and the doors to let the smoke out. Now, years later When the UC W started having their Christmas carol service, they wouldn't put up with this smoke. So the old stove got removed and baseboard heaters were installed in 1938 The church was extensively renovated and the belfry removed and we think we don't have a date, we think the vestibule was added them. Now if somebody would like to contradict me, please do. Nobody noticed any difference. Well, I must be right. And the window, which was above the door, was moved to the front of the church. And in 1988, a stained glass window, which was designed by Dennis Marshall was installed and it was dedicated to the cliff's the family. con i concrete foundation was put in place in about 1975 for the and then for the 100th birthday in 1987. A new Belfry was constructed and I think there was a picture of the belfry being installed it was shown earlier and it was constructed by camera and lease and erected on the roof with the aid of a BC Hydro crane. The wooden sign was replaced by a granite slab in 2000. The sign was designed by the UC W and carved by Warren Langley.

Unknown Speaker 21:50
I put a number of pictures in the front entryway because I think they speak volumes about the renovations to St Paul's over the years and will save me from explaining it all. First Edition that you can see was the addition of the front porch and the sacristy and knees we know happened before 1908 Just based on the photographs. While father Lariviere was the pastor a furnace was installed in the basement of the church and parishioners were expected to take turns getting up early so that the church would be warm for the arrival of everyone at for now. With the advent of electricity. The furnace was abandoned in favor of heaters suspended from the ceiling. John Phillips recalls how that if you were tall, they your head roasted but your feet froze. Not only did John that but John also explains that there were no pews in the in the church except for the front row. The remainder of the church was just simple benches. Eventually, though, power the pews were installed and the drafty church was insulated. And that's the most visible change to St Paul's the addition of the stonework. In 1966 Norman Shaw of Fulford harbour resident was hired to face the church with this concrete product for the purpose of insulating the building. The wainscoting and the interior wall at the front of the church were also covered and the mural was added. Mr. Shaw's daughter told me on a recent visit, that it was the only artwork that her father ever did. The little white church that had been on navigation maps for many years had become a stone church, which continues to stand as a landmark on Fulford Harbour. St. Paul's also became handicap accessible to a certain extent, long before it was legislated. When Auntie Mary Brennan found it difficult to climb the many steps to get into the church. They simply brought in Phil and covered the bottom stairs, making it easier for Mary to get into the church. In the 1970s, the church began to sag in one corner, and the post convenes had to be strengthened in the 80s and 90s. Parish minutes. parish council minutes make reference to frequent visits to appraise the condition of the foundation. However, she's still standing after 25 years, and during that time, St. Paul has seen many comings and goings, which leads us to our next topic of going to church. While it's our intention in this section to mainly talk about parishioners going to church I think that the stories of the priests travel is also worth a mention. The clergy who served St Paul's traveled the Gulf Islands by canoe, generally a two weeks circuit, depending on weather conditions. The story of father Kramer illustrates the risks that face some of them on some of these trips, while father was rowing To the Soviets from the south end, he was caught in a riptide incense and narrows. His boat was thrown against the rocky shore and shattered, forcing the priest now wet and shaken to scramble Overland. Fortunately Mr Betancourt found the days priest and took him in. Masses St. Paul's was celebrated about once a month, and the Sundays were very special in the Catholic community. The ballot St. Paul's rang out then as it does now inviting the parishioners to worship. The eighth common house was one household with buzzing with activity in preparation for Sunday Mass. One Catholic priest father sheelane, and an Anglican minister see Cecil Abbott often stayed with the increments. I think they felt sorry for the poor minister. He was expected to sleep on the pews, so they took him in. So the acre mints hosted the priest and the Anglican minister, and Bob says he recalls very vivid and lively conversations at the dinner table between these two gentlemen. Bob also says that he and his brother had a great time playing jokes and tricks on the priests and that they frequently got into trouble. However, I can't tell you what they did because Bob just chuckled and said that will come out in my book. Dorothy dogs also recalled father mage staying at the acre mins Phil much was a missionary priest who worked amongst the Gulf Islands and for him coming to Salt Spring was a real break. And so he enjoyed the hunting and the outdoor expeditions with the apron voice. When I asked Val about her church goings, she recalls that her mother sewed them very special dresses for their confirmation. The family generally walk to the church and bail sum that up by saying it didn't seem so far away them.

Unknown Speaker 27:19
Well I was born and raised Fulford so we used to walk to church. And one of my fond remembrances is DESE Dane and her husband, Doug, Betsy dean of hospice. It was named after her she was our Sunday school teacher and her husband I recall a mum might remember what the name of this thing was. Set up this incredible PA system that that totaled over the out of the bell tower every Sunday morning. And it rang appeal it was a carillon. Does anybody remember that? Yeah, you could hear it all over Fulford Harbour. But I guess it was a tape or something. Doug was heavily into that kind of thing. He was a ham radio operator. And I don't know what all and I don't know when the carillon was removed because I left Salt Spring in 1965, only to come back a few years ago. has to remember hats and gloves. The scramble to find a pair of gloves and little velvet hats with veils and nylons with little seams up the back of your leg. And they weren't supposed to have any runs in them. On Sunday morning, I remember I got confirmed because I didn't want to go to Sunday school anymore. But it didn't realize what problem it was going to represent from that point on. One little story, Elizabeth Dean and I set off one morning for Sunday school. We both lived that way. And her mother had come over I suppose and gotten the Sunday school room all nice and warm. And Elizabeth and I had a brainstorm. We went down on the beach at the Catholic Church and we walked all the way over to the head of the harbor on the mud flats in our good shoes and socks. And when we got to the church Betsy was so mad at us she wouldn't let us in. I might say we smelled a little and because my mother left on the side of the road on the way down to Fulford we walked back to Fulford on the beach so that we wouldn't be seen so that we could spend our time at Patterson store. We always have had a resident Rector so the by that time we had three churches on Salt Spring and St. Mary's in a few years back with a going concern. We are congregations getting smaller or smaller, but we'll get into that later, but that was going to church for me. Nylon hat gloves.

Unknown Speaker 30:17
As previously mentioned services were held in the early days when the minister arrived on the island in 1904. The parsonage was built across the road from Burgoyne church, in hopes of attracting a minister for an extended stay. However, with money for salaries of scarcity, the ministerial position seemed only to attract the young new graduates, and they stayed roughly for about a year's time. We can only assume services were held regularly with a resident Minister shared through the Saltspring circuit, which included beaver point, Burgoyne, Vesuvius and divide. During the war years services were held once a month, and once all settled down after 1945 services returned to twice a month in the early 50s. As young families grew, so did the Sunday school, reaching a zenith of 23 children in 1953. However, with transportation improving and the lack of teachers for the Sunday School Ganges became the church of choice. The U CW operated at varying degrees of activity level over the years, and in 1967 was consolidated with Ganges. By 1972, the Beaufort area spirit was showing and they reinstated their use CW as an individual unit, and continued to operate actively to this day. In 1972 73, the church services were held again at the little church and then petered out again. And in 1982. Some of us tried again to hold regular services, but the attempts failed, the attendance was quite low and got to be almost nil. So roughly all go to Ganges those that want that service. Nowadays, however, our you CW group holds a Christmas carol service each December, ever since 1990, which is extremely well attended. And we have one summer service. For that we've been holding ever since about the same number of years. We've We've got basically the two services in a in a year. Although folks now come to the little valley church and fancy cars and SUVs, the feeling of community and strength gained from gathering together is every bit as strong as when they came by horse and buggy. And it's very evident as we move into our little topic on celebrations. Just what that community spirit you can, you can always feel it when we when we gather at the church. We had in 1987 in August, the end of the summer, we had our 100 celebration 100th anniversary celebration. It was it was wonderful. There's pictures in on the table back there, all the newspaper clippings from the driftwood and and it was very well attended. As I remember, there was some dispute as to who was the most senior member of the congregation that day, Jesse Toynbee stood up and then Maggie Lee stood up and she says, I think I'm older than you Jesse. And both were in their 90s at the time, and we had the all the ECW which is the mainstay of the little church now not whatever happens there, it happens through through the little, the little women's group. And, and so we're quite active, but we all dressed up in period costumes. And there's, again, a few pictures on the table back there. But all enjoyed the fellowship we tend to in summertime, we would At that celebration, as in other summer celebrations that we have, we have a little bit of tea and cookies outside after the service and it just it's a very nice time for for people to to you know visit together and look at the cemetery and that and we had a little incident one time quite a quite a number of years ago and the church fence needed a bit of repair with us. And I remember a lot of the men folk Ronnie Lee included and they were all standing around talking about the fence and they all got their little pen knife out and started picking the paint off the fence and I thought well boy, you know, maybe we should have another Sunday service. We wouldn't have you know we'd have this halfway halfway done by then. But anyway, that didn't happen. But we feel that every service in the little church is a celebration it it seems to bring out the good in people and in these, they certainly enjoy it. Terry, I'm sure you have some celebration stories about St. Mary's.

Unknown Speaker 35:21
We're in the same boat we are down to now. One service a month. Our guild is I think there's about five of us left. We try really hard to Yeah, keep things going. When when celebration that we're very fond of is south and Christmas, which is always the Sunday before Christmas. And it's a carol service and the Christmas story and it's all the churches always fall for that. And it's wonderful to see. And we have a Christmas Eve mass. And we're, as I said, trying to have one service the month years ago. We had this was shot farm next door to the church. And we used to have a summer garden state shots, which was wonderful. It was a tea I remember a cakewalk. And the guild used to hold strawberry teas for fundraising. Sometimes they had them at the church. Sometimes they had them over here at the hall. In 1994 St. Mary's celebrated its 100th birthday with a huge party at the Fulford Hall. There was Barbara lamb barbecue done by Mike Byron. And a lot of people came in costume. I remember Kathleen was wearing a dress that's now what over over 100 years old it was given to her by one of the shots, Gladys Shaw. And I saw some pictures. I think there's some on the board at the back of old cars people arrived in old cars. But the 100th birthday was was particularly memorable for one thing, the hysterical society was present. And Jack Webster interviewed God. And I'm sure that somewhere that must be on videotape. And if you ever get a chance, it's worth seeing. So as Sharon said, every every Eucharist that we have now is a celebration so we're usually the first Sunday of each month.

Unknown Speaker 37:45
The church picnic was the highlight of celebrating in the Catholic community. Valerie members riding a buggy to attend the picnics, which were held on the point in front of the church. Of course the road was a narrow lane, and there was very little traffic on the foot for Ganges road. Dorothy also recalls how beautiful the point was before that road was widened. The photo of Mary Jane Fisher's wedding in 1908 captures a very elaborate celebration at St. Paul's. Mary Jane was the eldest daughter of Maria McCoy and George Fisher. Following the church service, everyone went to wrestle Island, the bride's home for a picnic. How delightful it must be to picture them traveling by canoe to and from Russell island in this wedding garb. At another wedding in the 70s St. Paul's also had posted a beautiful bride. But this time when Marcel Marcotte arrived at the church to wed Leo colasoft, she literally could not get through the church door. The style of the day was a hoop skirt. And her hoop was so large that they had to take the door off the church to get her inside. The photographs of the dedication in 1885, as well as the anniversaries, Rick records, very special celebrations. And they certainly are worth 1000 words. We have the one photo earlier of the 1885 celebration for the dedication of the church and I encourage you to look at it on the table. We also had a 100th anniversary celebration in 1980. At that time since our church is so small, the celebration was held in record part so the church was the backdrop to the celebration. At that time, Mark Fitton was one of the main organizers of the event. And the main focus for her in preparing for this celebration was that we would celebrate and remember the pioneers who had contributed so much to St. Paul's and to the community over the years. Among the guests on that occasion, were former power Sisters and descendants of the families from this picture. Last month we celebrated our 120/5 anniversary. Once again, we recalled and celebrated the contribution of those early families. And once again, having the descendants of those people made our celebration very special indeed. St. Paul's role in the lives of the Catholic community down through the years can be summarized by the expression from cradle to grave. And so now we will look at the cemeteries of our churches. St. Paul cemetery is divided into three sections. The historic section beside the church is the one you are all most familiar with. In the section at the opposite end of the parking lot, you will find the graves mostly of the second generation of many of the pioneers. And we have an upper section, which I put down as currently in use, and I thought, well, the other two are also still in use. Unfortunately, many of the graves in our historic section are unmarked. It was actually quite surprising to see all the white crosses in an early photo that I got from Lucille Marcotte, and Val told me the story about how this came about. In the early 1930s. A parishioner winning with a scythe to cut the overgrown grass and weeds. The wooden markers were in the way and many had fallen over. So he simply removed them so he could get on with the job. Dorothy Aikman, and Molly Carlin drew a map to the best of their memory. So we do have some records. Recently though, I went through the burial records in our church office, and I found over 50 names that have unmarked graves. Yesterday while I was playing bridge, someone asked me if I was going to talk about the bodies that were buried under the full for Ganges road. And I thought, I better go home and do some homework here. So I made some phone calls to Dorothy and to Val again and to Bob to try to get clarification of this story. And what happened was, when the road was widened, they did actually have to excuse three grades from the cemetery beside the church. However, these graves these bodies were interred in the upper section, the second section of the cemetery, and there is no one under the full for Ganges road. We hope it's very strange in the telling of this story that Bob told me that this job was left to the road crews. Not a usual day's work for a road crew but when you consider that the road crew was Teddy Kremen, who was the road Foreman and Michael jives who because he owned the horses did the road work? It may be it's a little easier to appreciate it. But I must say I have a really hard time with thinking of the road crew as being responsible for this job. When you visit the cemetery, you will notice that many of the graves of the Hawaiians are decorated with Shell beads. This practice is similar to our tradition of putting flowers on a grave. However, I've always find it quite remarkable that the shell beads are very rarely disturbed on these graves. These necklaces don't wander off the way many things on this island that aren't meal bound wander off. They remain as a wonderful tribute to the people who contributed to the building of St. Paul's and to Salt Springs early settlers.

Unknown Speaker 43:56
I'm going to read from Mary Davidson's history of the Burgoyne church with regard to the cemetery. The first person to be buried in the Burgoyne church graveyard was Robert Ewan McLennan, who died of blood poisoning in 1901 at the age of 21 years. His monument, the only tall pinkish red one in the churchyard, was brought from Scotland around the horn and up the Pacific coast by sailing ship. It contains also an inscription on each side for his parents, Alexandre and Elizabeth Beth McLennan, who are buried on either side of him. Nearby are His brother, Robert Murray, sister, Anne Elizabeth. She, her surname major was Stewart and nephew William Stewart. The second burial to perform was at the Burger King church was that of a small girl, Enid Bell, who died in 1915. And she was the daughter of the minister at the time, and I guess he lived in cross the road. Among them McLennan Graves is a stone slab with no headstone or inscription. It's a mystery grave that could have been a body moved from a previous site, perhaps a Williams or a Maxwell child, or originally buried on the Maxwell firm, but no one knows for sure. Now, we still have cremation plots available. And in the winter, the west side of the churchyard is underwater. So we don't really promote plots on that side only on the east side where it's much drier.

Unknown Speaker 46:11
Well, we still have lots of room at St. Mary's, so y'all come. We also have many unmarked graves in our cemetery. Mr. Shaw, who lived next door, felt badly many years ago about the number of graves that had no headstones and no markings. And so out in his barn, he carved a mold out of wood. And he poured cement crosses, and you will still see a number of them in the cemetery. Some of them have been destroyed over the years they fell over, they removed last. The cemetery is in fairly poor condition. I don't know what can be done about it. I think that a lot of the Pioneer cemeteries look like this. And certainly a lot of the old cemeteries in England look like this. I don't know whether anything should be done about them. I think maybe they should be left alone. The only thing that I would like to see in regard to the cemeteries is something done about the unmarked graves because it would be nice to know that somebody is there. We can have our own unknown soldiers. Have a have a look around St. Mary's to Baptist Pharaoh's grave is just outside the church door. There's a set of three with cement covers and his I think it's the middle one, isn't it? Just outside this just up from the doors. Some some of our cemeteries have been vandalized over the years. So that leads us into our final little topic, which is vandalism. Some of the cement crosses that I was just talking about were destroyed. That way some of the headstones have been cracked and broken because of vandalism. It's an unfortunate thing that today, we have asked that the churches be locked. We started that back in about 2001 There's been many break ins over the years I was reading the Old guild books in the last few days and it just seems like twice a year anyway it says another break in another break in this destroyed that destroyed things pulled off the wall stomped on old pictures destroyed. prayer books destroyed him books destroyed. We had a very bad one happened in 2001 when several youngsters I guess went into the church and got the big fire extinguisher and they fired it into the keyboard of the organ up onto the beams all over the altar the pulpit, the pews, the floors, the carpets, and of course that's very caustic. That was not the first time that that had happened. But it was the last time because we had asked for the church to be locked after that. It required a great deal of cleanup because it's caustic you can't add water to it. You can't vacuum it because you can't breathe it so we had to hire someone with a special vacuum cleaner that filters underwater to vacuum it took six hours then it took the guild about five hours to wash and clean the rest of it up in 2000 and for with the coming up the freedom camp they felt free to knock open the front door bust into the vestry rip the locks off of the lock cupboards and somebody stole the wine. Now, it's interesting that they did not take anything else. Because years ago in break ins, they stole everything that was were stealing. We lost the candlesticks, the pot and the cross the arms plate that had been handmade, it was over 100 years old. So pretty well, anything that meant anything is gone. And now, the things that are there we guard a little more carefully. I take home the holy hardware when it's not in use a Rottweiler Yes, that's right. So, luckily, we were the only church in the valley that was not set fire to and Bev and Emily are going to tell you about that for their churches. And we think that the reason for that in 1997 the same morning was there was something going on in the Fulford Hall. And there were people out on the road when this person had set fire to St. Paul's and went by St. Mary's. He, he bypassed St. Mary's and set fire to the United Church up the valley. So we were fortunate in that regard.

Unknown Speaker 51:27
Really, the Burgoyne church has been very fortunate in terms of vandalism. Over the years since I've been part of the looking after the church, which is about 25 years, we've had just a handful of problems, a few people sleeping in the church at night and things like that, or people that that felt that, you know that it was theirs to use as they wanted. But really, we feel we feel lucky that we we didn't have much trouble, we never kept it, kept it locked. We talked about it once in a while. And then as Terry mentioned, and then the fire came, and it was August 1997. And our We were devastated. We there was no structural damage that occurred, but it woke us up to the fact that maybe, you know, we needed to do something. And so we we did start locking the door, and I live very close. And so I'm able to have it open, you know, I unlock it in the morning, and I like it at night and we're we're happy to be able to do that because we feel that it's, it's nice for people to be able to come in if they can, but it's not always. It's not always possible. So, unfortunately, it has it has changed for us. You know things we have a guestbook in the in the vestibule that it's wonderful to read what people write down and how many people enjoy to to be able to walk into an open church and just be there by themselves and do what, what they feel they want to do. But things the fire changed that. We were extremely lucky with the fire as the way the firemen told it to us. They were headed to one they got the call for St. Paul's that St Paul's is burning. And so they sent one fire truck down via Stuart road and the other truck came the main road. And so the firemen when I when I was talking to him, he said you know you had about five minutes left and then all the varnish was dripping off the walls by this time and he said five more minutes and you're you're literally your church would have been up in flames. But he said when we were going by. We weren't intending to stop at your church. We were going to St. Paul's and he said so my my friend as I slow down because we saw smoke coming from the back of the where the chimney is in that photograph. He said I saw a smoke coming from it. And my cohort said this isn't the church that's burning. It's the one down at St. Paul's. But he said a fireman has been ingrained in you you don't pass smoke. And so we stopped and he said and it was very lucky that we did because so it was it was very devastated pretty much. There was incredible water and smoke damage inside. But we did with it was kind of an interesting coincidence because we had intended we had had put plans in place to fix the roof was and it was one week before the roof was to be to be replaced that the that the arson happened and so it's kind of the the community just I mean it was all everything just came together at the same time and in the community just it was just overwhelming for me as part of the the what do we do about this now a crew we had incredible community support come and help us with the roof and we regrouped it and then we managed you know with with the help of the insurance to to redo the inside and it just you know if you have a chance this afternoon to stop by and see it I'm sure that it looks like it was built yesterday it's it's beautiful inside now all all redone and so I don't know if you say the arson was a mixed blessing but it's you know it's it's looking beautiful inside now and so we do we do keep it locked I hate to see the lock but also I we don't have a lot of things in the church that are movable you know for anybody to come in and pick up and take away it just we our little sign outside says you know enter to pray leave to serve. So we kind of hope that that might make a guilty conscience for somebody that wants to do damage but anyways, we we do try to keep it open as much as we can for for folks and and we just cross our fingers. That's it we don't have any more. More troubles

Unknown Speaker 56:53
Elsa and Arthur Drummond received quite a shock when they arrived at St Paul's on July the third 1993 To clean the church. They walked into a scene of major destruction and inventory list senseless damage beyond belief as well as the theft of some of the churches sacred vessels and linens. relieved and grateful parishioners celebrated a rededication of the church three weeks later, the altar and the furnishings were replaced and Thaddeus Shepard big had begun the job of repairing all the statues. An article in the island Catholic News by the President of the parish council summarized to the event. The members of the Catholic community have been profoundly shocked and hurt by this senseless violation of our heritage. St Paul's Church. However, we have been tremendously comforted by the outpouring of love, and the help of wonderful people of all faiths. On Saltspring, the outer islands and communities on Vancouver Island and beyond. St Paul's also fell victim to the devastating fire in 1997. And now you're gonna get a Catholic version. Bow clearly recalled hearing the sirens that day, she encountered the fire chief Mr. Wag on the road, who told her of the fire at the church. Apparently the report had come in that the Catholic Church was on fire. And the Ganges firemen rushed to Our Lady of Grace Church, only to find it was the wrong Catholic Church. So they headed for St. Paul's, but of course stopped along the way when they saw the smoke coming out of the United Church. Some of the fire crews stayed there and the rest went on to St. Paul's. In the church, the altar was burnt, and there was mainly extensive smoke damage. This act of arson necessitated the replacement of the windows that had been brought over from Cowichan Bay in the 1880s. And when we were doing a recent cemetery cleanup, we were still finding broken glass in the church yard and it was just so amazingly thick that it just brought home again how terrible that was to lose this wonderful part of the history of our church. St Paul's was once again the subject of violence when our church doors were cut with a chainsaw in September of 2004. No one even entered the church. They just cut the lock out of the door, presumably to make a statement. Earlier that summer we had been criticized openly for locking our church. Once again expressions of outrage over such an app, as well as support and generosity of islanders heartened our parishioners. The response to these bad times are poignant reminders of the island is generated or off the tee and affection for the historic buildings. And there are some pictures and as I say pictures, say volume so make sure you have I looked at the pictures, and I included the inventory that was taken in the first act of violence because the vandalism was as truly senseless. We're not really ending on an awful note. Maybe we shouldn't have left vandalism to the last. However, I think when we were preparing to celebrate our 120/5 anniversary, and we were making up a guest list, Val drives was saying we have to be sure to invite the firemen and you know, she wanted to be sure that Bill Pat, Bill, Pat, Bruce Patterson was there, because Bruce was the one that had actually gone into the church and started the first of the firefighting that had to take place that day. And her focus was again on the notion of these were terrible acts, but they did bring out a realization to the parishioners about how very special our church is, and as well how special it is to all of the islanders. And that's why I'm going to close on behalf of all of us talking about our future considerations. Arthur three churches are rich with a history that encompasses much of what has contributed to Salt Springs unique character. In her recent book on Maria McCoy, Jean barman speaks eloquently of the importance of telling our stories. She says, we may not be responsible for the big events, but we are affected by them. And we influence the settings where we make our lives. Stories about the everyday are as important as stories of drama and glamour. Today, we've shared with you both kinds of stories, versions of same stories. This sharing is Gene says is important for makes us a part of the past, and it helps shape our future. The pioneer spirit that led to the construction and the preservation of the churches is the history of our islands, our history. Maintaining these churches is a challenge worthy of our time, talent and treasure. Justice in the past, we need to come together and work regardless of our church affiliation. And we encourage all of you to participate in our cemetery cleanups, our work bees and our restoration projects. You are welcome to be a part of St. Mary's St. Paul's and Burgoyne United's history. Start today by visiting our churches following this presentation. But I will close with a caution. You may come under the spell of what it's obviously become our passion. And then who knows.

Unknown Speaker 1:03:00
Just like to thank all of our speakers for their interesting and very well prepared material. And just on a personal note, Fred rains who built that church also own and built our place upon road. So there's Community Links everywhere. So thank you very much and do enjoy your visits to the churches.