Big day for St. Luke's Anglican
St. Luke's Anglican Church in Pembroke has much to celebrate, having paid off its mortgage and being consecrated as a house of worship. Here, Bishop Charlie Masters of the Anglican Network in Canada, left, and Pastor Tim Parent, St. Luke's deacon, pose for a picture inside the church.
It was a special day for the congregation of St. Luke's Anglican Church in Pembroke on Sunday.
They were celebrating not only paying off the mortgage on their Julien Street site within eight years, but the consecration of the church itself, solemnly dedicating the former catering hall into a house of worship.
Pastor Tim Parent, the rector of St. Luke's, said this is a great day in the history of the congregation, and there is much reason to rejoice. He said some of their former parishioners were able to come out to join them, as well as representatives of other churches and businesses who have helped them out over the years leading to this day.
A special guest is the Right Reverend Charlie Masters, the Bishop of the Anglican Network in Canada, representing 73 churches to date from coast to coast. He conducted the consecration service.
“We are very blessed in God's Grace,” Parent said. “The Church is the people, but we are grateful to have a home base to work from. Now it belongs to us.”
St. Luke's is still a young parish, officially recognized and welcomed into the fold on Nov. 23, 2008 by the Right Reverend Donald Harvey, Bishop Moderator of the Anglican Network in Canada.
For the first 11 months of existence they met in the Pembroke Seventh Day Adventist Church. Parent said in August of 2009 they purchased the Pembroke Catering Hall on 307 Julien Street in Pembroke from Cyril and Sandra Gosse, both members of the congregation. After a couple of months filled with hundreds of volunteer hours, the church had a grand opening of the new location on the weekend of Oct. 17-18, 2009, which culminated with their very first service there.
Bishop Masters said this has been an impressive accomplishment for St. Luke's, noting it is the first church within the Anglican Network in Canada to be totally owned by its congregation. Only eight out of their 73 churches even have their own buildings to worship in.
“This is a pretty big deal to transform the building and retire the debt,” he said. “It is a delight to be here for this and have the joy of consecrating this building.”