Sunday, December 22, 2013

                                                                                                                           December 22, 2013

3255 Edgemont Boulevard

Highlands United Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

"Highlands United Church activity began in July 1946, but it was not constituted a Pastoral Charge by the Vancouver Presbytery until September 26, 1950. At that time, the church was called Capilano Highlands United Church; (built on Hillcrest)  the name was changed to Highlands United Church in February of 1951." (Link 1.) 

The present Highlands United Church on Edgemont Boulevard was designed by the architect R. William Wilding and originally consisted of a narthex, sanctuary, and lower hall used for the Sunday School and social activities.  "A landmark in Edgemont Village, this church expresses its verticality through the use of a tall structural A-frame roof framed with laminated beams.  The church is reached by a bridge at the upper level.  The exterior is clad with vertical rough red cedar boards; the roof was originally clad with cedar shingles to evoke the surrounding woods and mountain views. The interior of the nave features exposed laminated beams, and is dramatically lit through the use of coloured glass, mostly amber, in small slit windows. A large skylight illuminates the altar area.  It opened in November 1958. Cost of the building was $150,000. " (Link 3.) 

The sanctuary seats about 350 members of the congregation.  The balcony seats an additional 100.

Sanctuary Balcony with Colored Glass
In 1961 1000 children were attending Sunday School and more rooms were needed.  In 1963 and 1964  an Christian Education Centre was added.  It consists of a two floor wing of classrooms and a gym with classrooms above. This formed a central courtyard. (See photo below.)

Courtyard formed by 1963-64 addition.

In the 1990's the District of North Vancouver gave Highlands United Church, Heritage status.

In 2006 the first phase of an upgrade to the church was started.  Last year the Sanctuary Chancel was renovated.  The slat reredo was replaced with a block format wall featuring a tall LED cross.  The color of the LED can be changed according to the religious season of the year.  The present blue is the color of Advent.  Banners to the left of the cross can also be changed with the season. The present Madonna and Child with blue accents is for Advent and Christmas.

2013 Reredo with LED cross and banners

Christmas Banners to the left of the LED Cross

Today's congregation numbers around 400 to 500.  The Sunday worshipers number around 300 to 400.  They enter the Edgemont Avenue  bridge leading to the stained glass doors to the Narthex and Sanctuary.

Edgemont Entrance to Narthex and Sanctuary

Stained Glass Doors to Narthex and Sanctuary

Nativity Exhibit and Craft Fair

In November 2013 Highlands United Church held their fifth annual Nativity Exhibit and Craft Fair.  An orange and green nativity scene, of the wise men following the Star of Bethlehem to the Christ Child, was mounted on the roof of the church.

Wise Men, Star, and Manger Scene

Over 200  nativity scenes were displayed in the Lower Hall. These were shared by members of the congregation.  They were from all over the world. 

From Hope B.C. Canada

From Northern Canada

From Puerta Vallarta, Mexico


(For more about the history of Highlands United Church see 
  Blog Post 1/26/14.)

Thank you: To congregation member, Alan,  for information on the history of 
                 the church and the renovation plans.
Photos: Taken in November 2013 by SW.
Link 1:;rad
Link 2:
Link 3:


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

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