Posts Tagged ‘religion’
The spires of St. Dunstan’s Basilica, located squarely in the centre of downtown Charlottetown on Great George Street, are visible throughout the downtown area. The basilica of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlottetown, St. Dunstan’s is the core of Island Catholicism.
I didn’t take this photo of Charlottetown’s Trinity United Church (220 Richmond Street). Both my cell and my camera had run out of power, and my friend Stephen took the picture instead. I wanted one regardless, not least since this was the church I went to as a child. Charlottetown’s oldest church, it is listed on Canada’s registry of historic places.
The Wesleyans, or Methodists, had established a presence on Prince Edward Island in the late 1700s. They met in private homes until 1813, when they built their first chapel on the North side of Richmond Street, between Queen and Pownal Streets. They ceased meeting in this chapel in approximately 1835, when they built a new chapel on the corner of Prince and Richmond Streets. Their first service in the new chapel was held on the 9 July 1835 with the resident minister, J.P. Heatherington, leading the service. The building was approximately 42 by 55 feet long however, because of a rapidly increasing membership, the chapel was enlarged twice in 1840 and 1847.
Due to various revivals over the next decades, the congregation continued to grow in size and it soon became apparent that a new church was required. In 1863-1864, the congregation built the current Trinity United Church along the south side of the wooden chapel. It was a much larger, brick building that would seat 1200. Thomas Alley and Mark Butcher, both architects and members of the congregation, were chosen to draw up the plans.
The church was to be of a simple design. The reverend presiding over the laying of the cornerstone by the wife of Lt. Governor George Dundas on 25 May 1863 stated, “No rich carving in stone or fancy moulding will attract the eye… Its peculiar excellence will be its facility for the preaching and hearing of the gospel of our blessed Lord.” The dedication of the church took place 13 November 1864. This church was originally named the First Methodist Church, however after the Methodist Church became part of the United Church of Canada in 1925, the church was renamed Trinity United Church.
An article published last month in the Charlottetown Guardian by Sally Cole notes that the church will be celebrating its 150th anniversary next year.