Saturday, August 29, 2009

A "Little" Church on the Prairie

About 1.5 hours east of my place is a small place called St. Elizabeth. There was a town there at one time, but all that's left is a church. The church is one mile off the highway, surrounded by trees, so all you can see from the highway is the steeple.


While Brad was working one week he happened to be close to the Church. While waiting for the backhoe to get to the next place they needed to be, Brad decided to have lunch by the church and take a look around. As luck would have it, the people who look after the church were there that day & he got to talk to them and have a tour of the property and the Church!! A week later we happened to be close enought to make a side trip so I could take some pictures and see it too. The church is always open.

The church was originally a wood structure, but it burned down and in 1951 this church was built to replace it. The whole church is built using cinder blocks. As people's children grew and moved away the membership dwindled to the pointwhere they finally had to close the church.




After being empty for a number of years it was sold to an individual, who lived in it with his dogs. He had cattle on the yard and basically didn't take care of the church or the property. In 1997 Manitoba had a large flood which affected the church & property. The government paid for the flood damage but wanted the person who owned the Church to build a dike around it which would be very costly.




At this time a group of people who grew up going to the Church decided to get together and see if they could purchase the church from the owner. After paying the man $12,000 they owned a Church. Apparently it took weeks of work to find the small cemetary and the yard in the weeks & trees that had taken over. They painted the inside, and the benches donated by a museum (that used to be the living quarters for the Grey Nuns in Winnipeg).






There is a small room off the entrance full of newspaper clippings and history of some of the original members, the fire, and the present church.


Now the Church is used once a year. People from all over who grew up in the area and attended the church show up one Sunday a year for a service, lunch and get together. On the East wall are plaques with the names of people who have donated money to support the church.


It's amazing what some people can do when they put their minds to it, aren't afraid of work, and know the importance of Church, family and history. If you are ever in Manitoba, come for a visit and we'll go to see this amazing Church.

8 comments:

  1. What a beautiful building and spirit of those who bought the church back and restored it. And thank goodness for homecoming Sunday's. They keep you humble!

    Thanks Audrey!

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  2. Love blog post - I really enjoyed reading about this church and the pictures are so neat! Thanks!

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  3. Thanks Audrey, like the story of this church..

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  4. What a great looking building. Love seeing pictures like this and hearing the history behind them.

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  5. wow thats really cool
    and it looks nothing like i had expected on the inside....its immaculate now, amazing

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  6. I love looking at old churches...there is so much history about them.

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  7. What a wonderful place! Your photos turned out really well. I love the way the sky looks in the background. These are postcard-worthy, Audrey!

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