Sunday, March 3, 2013

2641 Chesterfield Avenue-2000

St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

The story of St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church originates with the establishment of two North Vancouver Presbyterian Home Mission's in the early 1900's.

The first Presbyterian Home Mission started in 1903.  The first building chosen for worship was Dorman's Shack on East 13th Street. (See Blog Post 9/2/12.)

"This shack was built of shakes, was 15 feet square, and had a seating capacity of 25 people.  The congregation sat on wooden planks nailed to logs..." (REF 1.)  The first sermon was, "Where there is no vision, the people perish." (REF 1.)  

 100 block of Lower Keith Road East

A year later they built a church to seat 100 facing Victoria Park on the 100 block of Lower Keith Road East. (See Blog Post 11/18/12.) 

By 1912 the church had grown and the congregation built a new church at 10th and St. George's Avenue. (See Blog Post  1/9/11.) (REF 1.)

St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church-2000
10th and St. George's Avenue

In 1925 the United Church of Canada was formed by the uniting of the Congregational, Methodist, and those of the Presbyterian church that wished to join.  St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church was renamed St. Andrew's United Church.  Presbyterian congregation members that didn't wish to join the United Church moved to the Oddfellow's Hall-the IOOF Hall-of the  former St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in the 100 block of Lower East Keith Road. (1930 Fire Insurance Map at Blog Post 3/25/12.)

In 1934 the congregation moved from the Odd Fellow's Hall to their new St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church built at 121 East 12th Street. (See Blog Post 2/13/11.) They worshiped there until 1952 when they joined with St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church to form St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church at 2641 Chesterfield Avenue.  

121 East 12th Street-2000

The second Presbyterian Home Mission started in 1910.  Their first services  held services in the Exhibition Hall/Exhibition Hall at East 23rd and Lonsdale Avenue.  "This mission was known as "North Lonsdale Presbyterian Church"... (REF 1.)

1908 Horticultural Building/Exhibition Hall-NVArchives

 In that same year "Alexander Philip and Robert Fowler presented the congregation with the deeds for three lots...This is the site, at the southwest corner of (West) 27th Street and Chesterfield Avenue, which our present church buildings occupy... The plans, drawn up by architect Alexander Law, specified the dimensions of the building as 24 feet by 24 feet.  It was built by carpenter W.J. Campbell for about $1138.00.... In November of 1910,...the congregation walked from the Exhibition Hall up to the church one evening carrying lanterns to light the way." (REF.)  In 1915 the name of the church was changed to "St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church". (REF 1.)  The church site was on the north side   of the three donated lots-adjacent to 27th Street-where the church hall now sits.  

1910 Church
(1955 Photo)

"When the vote on Church Union was taken (1925) at St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church the members reject it with a 75% majority,  thus they were able to retain their church building and all its 1952 St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's joined together to give our church the name it bears today....In 1955 the former  St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church on East 12th Street was sold....the congregation of St. Andrew' and St. Stephen's approved plans for a new sanctuary that would seat 250 people...the estimated cost was $29,500....At this time there were 204 members and 211 Sunday School pupils.  the new sanctuary is the same one we use today." (REF 1.)  This building sits on the south side of the three lots donated in 1910, adjacent to the lane.

1955 Church Sanctuary-2013

The ceiling of the 1955 sanctuary is supported by laminated beams.  The side windows are clear glass.  Two carved wooden doors, each with one leaded glass window are at the entrance to the sanctuary narthex.

1955 Sanctuary-2013

"In 1961 it was decided that a Christian Education Building was needed at an estimated cost of $60,000....the labour for this new building was provided by the men of the congregation.  They tore down the old church which had stood on the site for 50 years, and on November 7th of that year the new building was dedicated too the glory of God." (REF 1.)

1961 Church Hall on right-2013
(Site of the 1910 church.)

On the upper level is the large hall for social events and a big , kitchen.  "On the lower level there was a caretaker's suite, a room for the nursery, washrooms, and a large room for meetings...." (REF 1.) In 1996 this space became the church office. (REF 1.)  This space has recently become the Prayer Room.

Prayer Room-2013

"By 1990 the need for more space for church activities became critical....The Board of Managers had started planning to excavate the basement area under the church hall to provide for Sunday School classrooms....In May of 1993, the new basement facilities were dedicated to the glory of God." (REF 1.)

2012 Centennial Banner-2013 
Hanging on rear wall of Sanctuary
Made by women of the congregation

Reference 1: History of St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church
                 pages 1-15 out of 23, given to SW January 2013 by Angela Edmonds.
Reference 2: City of North Vancouver Heritage Inventory 1994.
Thank you: To Church Administrator Angela Edmonds for a tour and history
                 of the church.
Photos: Top Photo-copy of photo hanging in church hallway,.
                 BPhotos taken in January 2013 by SW.
                 Photo from REF 2. Blog Post 3/25/12.
                 North Vancouver Archives Photograph Bu P392.1.


God, be with the persecuted Christians through out the world. Amen

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