Editorial: The people really were for the steeple

steeple-webAs Prairie Gold Scaffolding Ltd. workers began the process of tearing down their framework last Wednesday, residents and visitors once again got the opportunity to see our historic St. Jean Baptiste Church without the green netting that has protected workers and obscured our vision since May.

A $500,000 restoration project for St. Jean Baptiste Church is now completed and the approximately 80 feet of scaffolding that had risen from the pavement to the top of the historic church has been removed.

Those of us who work downtown had the benefit of seeing the steeple emerge as each piece of steel was lowered to the ground. The cross, now gleaming in white. The steeple, now a respectable and refurbished grey that glistens in the sun. The icon of Christ now glistening in gold beneath the base of the steeple. Whether of the Catholic faith, another denomination of Christianity or simply respectful of the importance the century-plus church represents to our community’s history, the restoration of the church now stands testemant to a shining moment in time in our commnity, a time when we all came together to raise the money that allowed the job to get done.

The St. Jean Baptiste Parish received a $250,000 Western Diversification Grant Mar. 12, the maximum matching dollars available for the $343,538.97 raised in the community last fall over a period of seven weeks. A year after that fundraising initiative and an historic facility stands restored for future generations of Morinvillians to recall the time when the community came together to preserve our past.

-SD

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3 Comments

  1. And now for the return of the 12 noon ringing of the bell!!!

    I sure hope that the bell will be set to ring again at noon, and perhaps at six pm. too.

  2. Agreed Joe!

    That I remember from the 60′ becasue it meant I was in trouble as I was late for lunch!

    The little red head.

  3. Please share the good news of the importance of this story with the former Anglican Bishop of Edmonton, Victoria Matthews. In her current position as Bishop of Christchurch NZ, she’s pressing hard to demolish her quake damaged, but fully restorable Cathedral. The healing and identity that springs from the restoration of a familiar , beloved landmark is far greater than the dazzle of a bright new building that quickly becomes dated and passé.

    Well done Morinville.

    Have a look at http://www.ThePeoplesSteeple.org to see the proposal to replace Christchurch’s steeple with help from friends in Canada, UK and US

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