Church History

ChurchHistory
 1900

Mr. George E. Sanders, a surveyor with the AND Company and a Church of England Lay Reader, conducted Church of England Services in 1905 or early 1906.  His granddaughter, Marguerite is a member of our choir today.

The first baby was baptised in Grand Falls in July of 1906.  William Paddick was baptised by Rev. Llewellyn Godden visiting from Exploits.

The first resident Church of England clergy, Rev. Henry Uphill, incumbent of the Mission of Grand Falls, held his first service on September 8, 1907.  In 2007, it was learned, thanks to Mr. Corey Sharpe of Grand Falls-Windsor, that on October 23, 1907, Rev. Uphill wrote Synod about the need for churches in Grand Falls, Bishop’s Falls and Norris Arm.

The Mission of Grand Falls was comprised of Grand Falls, Badger, Millertown and Millertown Junction On January 11, 1909, the decision was taken to apply to the AND Company for land to build a church.  Prior to this, services were held in the Town Hall. Between June 1909 and April 1910, a rectory was built by the Church Council
 1910 On April 12 1910, the Grand Falls Church of England Council decided to borrow $2,000.00 to begin building a Church.  Mr. Vincent S. Jones loaned the money, free of interest.On or around November 27 1910, the first Service was held in the new, unfinished, Church. December 4 1910, the Right Rev. Llewellyn Jones, Bishop of Newfoundland and Bermuda confirmed 26 people. December 10 1910, the first Select Vestry was elected: V.S. Jones, Eldred Sheppard, Thomas Brown, L.R. Cooper, T.S. Pooke, George Sanders, E.H. Berteau, Mr. Corner, John H. Willett, Rev. J. Whittle and Rev. W.W. Clarkson.   Left:  Sunday School class heading to confirmation on December 10, 1910, led by George A. Saunders; Sunday School Superintendent. August 1911, Grand Falls - including Millertown, Millertown Junction and Badger, was constituted a Parish and the Rev. Mr. Clarkson became the first Rector. April 7 1912, the pulpit, which was made and donated by Mr. Thomas Brown, Rector’s Warden, was used for the first time.  It is still being used in our church today. Left:  Ladies of the first Holy Trinity CEWA after a tennis game with T.E. Loder in 1912. During 1913 and 1914, work on the Church continued and a bell was purchased.  Completion of the Church was urgent as there was overcrowding and many people were unable to find seats. On June 12 1914, the Right Rev. Llewellyn Jones consecrated the Church of the Holy Trinity at 7:00pm.  The Duke of Connaught attended the service. The cemetery was consecrated at 4:00pm. In 1917, the Envelope System of supporting the work of the Church was introduced. On August 13 1918, the newly elected Bishop of Newfoundland and Bermuda, the Rt. Rev. William White visited Grand Falls and confirmed thirty-five persons. In 1919, men were asked to cut Birch firewood to supplement the supply of coal. The great need for a Parish Hall was brought to the attention of the Select Vestry by the Ladies’ Society who said that no work whatsoever would be done by them until a decision on a Parish Hall was made.  It was decided on February 25, 1919 that a committee be appointed to start the erection of a Parish Hall. Three hundred copies of a report of dues collected for 1918 were sent out to the congregation. October 23, the ladies sponsored a sale of work at the Town Hall. Games were played such as a voting contest for the most popular young lady (five votes for a dollar) or also 5 cents each.  Also, guessing beans in a jar and a  guessing contest of members in an upcoming election. A Garden Party was held in August 1919 with games,  sports and swings for the children. At the close of the year it was decided to borrow $1,500.00 at 3% interest for the Parish Hall Building Fund.              
 1920 The year 1920 began with the Select Vestry sending $3,000.00 to the Home and Foreign Mission Fund and raised the Rector’s salary to $1,200.00 per year. On April 12, 1920 a decision was made permitting dancing in the Hall. Permission was given to use the Parish Hall as a school until their own building is ready. During 1920 work, was done on the ladies’ vestry at the East end of the Church. The new pipe organ was dedicated and used for the first time on Sunday July 23, 1920. Memorial Service was held at Holy Trinity on August 17, 1922,  in memory of Viscount Northcliffe, who died in London on     August 14. On February 14, 1924, it was decided that owing to the annoyance during services caused by boys congregating in the transepts,  Mr. E. Bishop and Mr. A. Wells consented to take up their places in the transepts to keep the boys in order. On August 24, 1924, it was decided to build a school at the Railway Station for children who were too young to attend the Grand Falls School.  Mr. George Day, Mr. Jacob Bragg and Mr. W.J. Brown were elected to undertake the work. The cemetery committee reported that they had located a suitable site for a cemetery about one half mile along the Botwood Road. In 1925, the Rector announced a special collection for the Choir Fund so that Surplices could be purchased for the lady members of the choir. The suggestion by the Rector that a Social Club be formed was endorsed by the Vestry. The loose collection for Sunday, December 13, 1925,  was given to the Great War Veterans Association. A collection for the Orphanage Fund was taken up in Church on Sunday, December 31, 1925. The year 1926 saw the planning and fencing of the new cemetery.  Mr. H Windelor agreed to lay out the plots while Messrs. Sheppard, Noel and Eveleigh were appointed to decide on the size of the plots. Also in 1926,  it was decided to purchase a bicycle for the use of the Rector. A ruling was received from the Bishop to the effect 'that the proper procedure re. the resting of corpses during the Funeral Service in our Church,  is with the feet towards the altar'. On November 27, 1927 , Rt. Rev. William White dedicated a stained glass window donated by Mr. Thomas Brown.  When the old Holy Trinity Church was demolished in 1961,  the window was installed in St. Alban’s Church in Windsor. Any family requiring a cemetery plot would be required to pay $1.00 to a maximum of $5.00, if their contribution of $2.00 had not been made to Cemetery Fence Fund. As the new furnace was not performing satisfactorily, it was thought that too much coal was being put in at one time.  The janitor was asked to feed the furnace more often but with smaller quantities.  Mr. Jonathan Ralph was appointed Inspector of Furnaces on February 1, 1927. In March of 1927, a letter was sent to members of the congregation asking for donations: “in order that, architecturally, the building may become a completed structure with aisles, bell tower and spire and that sufficient accommodations for the appropriation of sitting on terms hereafter to be decided may be a possibility”. “As Church men we should take laudable pride in our Church.  At present it is unworthy of us.  It  gives visitors the impression that we are backward people, and compares unfavourably with some Churches  of our own and other denominations here and elsewhere in Newfoundland. “We believe too that the family pew for resident Church members is the ideal; although we adhere firmly to the principle of some unappropriated pew for “ the stranger within our gates “. In May of 1927, the Rev. W.E.R. Cracknell engaged as an Assistant Priest to help with the work at Millertown and Buchans. During 1928, many references were made to the nonpayment of church dues and to church attendance. The congregation was sorry to learn that the Choirmaster, Mr. Albert Burke, was going to England on holiday as he was not enjoying good health. At a meeting of the congregation on April 28, 1928,  the Rector read a letter from the Bishop proposing a rearrangement of the parish.  Grand Falls requires a Rector full time and so Badger, Miller Town, Millertown Junction and Buchans would be made a separate Parish. During 1928,  the roof of the Chancel of the Church was shingled. On November 12, 1928, Vestry congratulated People’s Warden, Mr. William Earle, who was elected to the House of Assembly. On May 12, 1929,  the Rector, Rev. T.E. Loder who served from November 1912 to  May 1929, preached his last sermon. On May 26, 1929,  the Rev. E.M. Bishop preached his first sermon after succeeding the Rev. T.E. Loder. On June 5, 1929,  the Rev. E.M. Bishop was  inducted as Rector of the Parish. On August 8, 1929, the annual garden party was held with net proceeds of $538.00.  Thanks were expressed to the Rev. Father Finn, Mrs. William Petrie and the L.O.L. Association for their assistance. In October, a new furnace was purchased for the Church. Sunday, December 1,  a special collection was taken in response to an appeal from the Parish of  Barr’d Islands and Joe Batts Arm.  Special envelopes were printed and distributed.    
 1930 The year 1930 opened with some favourable reports. The membership of the C.L.B. had increased to 82.  Mr. C. Hall, chair of the Finance Committee, reported that there was $5,658 on hand.  However, some of the congregation were paying less than $5.00 to the Church.It was decided to appoint Mr. Allan Noel and Mr. George Hellings as the first Envelope Secretary and Assistant.The people present at the AGM started the practice of donating Sunday School prize money ($58.00). This practice continued for many years. On March 13, 1930, the Rev. E.M. Bishop held a special service in the Station School at 4 pm. This is the school, located opposite St. Joseph’s R.C. Church, that was planned on August 24, in 1924. On May 7, 1930, a meeting was called to consider an extension to the Church.  When completed, the seating capacity would double.  Additions included north and south aisles, the entrances and towers and spire.  Members of the building committee were Thomas Brown, Samuel Lane, E.I. Bishop, Allan Noel, Samuel Pond, C. Hall, T. Sutton, John Lane, A. Hiscock, Joseph Lane and Joseph Noseworthy.  Cost was approx. $10,500.  A great deal of free labour was given for the excavation work. On November 23, 1930, a service of Consecration was conducted by Rt. Rev. William White, Bishop of Newfoundland. On August 15, 1932, Select Vestry passed a resolution which included a protest against the looting that has so openly been carried on in the case of recent burnings of buildings. In 1934, a new Rectory, at a cost of $13,000.00, was constructed on the site of the old one. A loan of $10,000.00 to finance the house was paid off completely in 1945.   In December 1934, a Social Club for the young men and women of the parish was formed. In October 1935, Miss Pearce, who had been the organist for 14 years, resigned. Mrs. W.J. Short assumed the position as organist. Mr. A.J. Martin, Choir-Master, resigned. It was decided to publish the Parish list of individual amounts paid to the Church. It was done before in 1919. January 19 to March 25, 1936, Rev. H. Hodder assumed the duties of Rector, while Rev. T. E. Loder visited England for medical treatment. In 1937, a stained glass window was given in memory of Mr. Charles H. Hayward by his family.   Commencing in 1937, all collections were credited to one account, namely Holy Trinity Church Fund while Christmas Day, Good Friday and other special collections would be earmarked. Before that, there was a separate account for each part of the Parish work. In 1937 part of the Church roof was reshingled, lighting was improved and repairs done to the chapel. It was decided to borrow $300.00 at 3% int. to carry out repairs to the Parish Hall. November 10, 1937 was observed as the Rector’s Silver Jubilee as a priest. December 5, 1937 saw the Right Rev. Philip Abraham confirm 95 persons.  Arches were built and flags flown in honour of his visit. In 1938, the Parish Hall was destroyed by fire. It was decided to build a two story concrete block building.  Insurance on the building that was burned amounted to $8500.00.  The new hall would cost $19,000.00.  The debt was paid by 1944. On June 4, 1939, a Church Banner, which was created by Mrs. Vincent S. Jones, was presented and dedicated.  The Banner depicts “The Adoration of the Magi” and is taken from “A Book of Hours” Flemish, second half of the fifteenth century.  The banner is still used in processions today.              
 1940 January 1940 saw the opening of the new Parish Hall. At the AGM held on February 21, 1940,  the Rector stated:  “Some claim membership in Holy Trinity Parish but do not support the work of the Church”.  It was agreed that the Church Wardens would draft a strongly worded letter and send it to those people. July 10 , 1940 saw the following rule put into effect at the Parish Hall:  Poker in any form is prohibited Another item which was mentioned for the first time, was the fact that at the next Synod,  the matter an assessment for the Clergy Retirement Fund would be discussed. A new furnace was installed in the west end of the Church by Mr. J.M. Sheppard, Mr. T. Sutton, Mr. J. Davis and Mr. S. Granter, free labour. In 1940 the Executive Committee of the Diocesan Synod enlarged the boundaries of the Parish of Grand Falls. It now embraced Grand Falls, Badger, Rushy Pond, Windsor, Bishop’s Falls, Rattling Brook Depot and Gander.  The Bishop appointed the Rev. D. Batten to assist the Rector. Rev. E.M. Bishop held his first service in Gander on September 3, 1940. December 8, 1940 saw the unveiling and dedication of the Memorial Window to the memory of  Edward Marsh and Mary Marsh. It was announced on January 4, 1941, that Mr. Vincent S. Jones, Managing Director of the Anglo-Newfoundland Development Co. Ltd. had been honoured by His Majesty the King in the New Year’s Honours List.  Mr. Jones was now Sir Vincent, a Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.  The Honour was in recognition of his personal contribution to development of a great industry.  Sir Vincent and Lady Jones were faithful members of Holy Trinity Church. Church finances improved during 1942. In the Summer of 1943, the Rev. E. M. Bishop was asked by the Bishop if he would accept the position of Archdeacon.  The Select Vestry agreed with the Bishop making the appointment but had reservations: Could a suitable permanent curate be obtained?  Would the Diocese help with the curate’s stipend?  Could a house be obtained for the curate?  The Bishop answered yes to the first two questions.  Bishop Philip Abraham visited Grand Falls on August 8, 1943.  He agreed to the appointment of a permanent curate and to help with his stipend. In 1943, Maj. L.R. Cooper resigned his office in the C.L.B. and he was succeeded by Maj. William J. Short . In May of 1944 Rev. Roland Farwell was appointed curate.  Members of the congregation loaned the Church money at 3% interest to purchase No. 5 Exploits Avenue to house the curate. The congregation congratulated Rev. E. M. Bishop on his appointment as Archdeacon.  In addition he received fifty telegrams and one hundred letters extending best wishes. The first service conducted by the Rev. Farwell in Holy Trinity Church, was on May 7, 1944. Since his appointment as Archdeacon, the Venerable E. M. Bishop had visited twenty-one communities in Labrador and forty in Newfoundland. On May 7, 1945, a special Thanksgiving Service was held for the end of the war in Europe.  The order of service was issued by the Archbishop of Canterbury and reprinted for use in this country. In 1945, a coffin truck was obtained and paid for from a legacy of the late Mr. E. Osmond. The bad behaviour of young children in church was noted. Complaints were received of the disappearance of articles left in coats in the  porches (no evidence of a connection to previous statement) In 1945, the balance owing on the construction of the Rectory was paid. The generosity of Dr. Walter Gear was recorded in Select Vestry minutes.  Although he was not a member of our congregation, he gave a monthly donation to the poor of the parish. The congregation was pleased that the award of the Order of the British Empire had been given to Mr. L. R. Cooper,  a member of our congregation. In 1945,  upon their departure from Grand Falls,  Sir Vincent and Lady Jones were presented with a set of photographs of the Church and Church property. In 1946,  Mr. James Lind presented a four year landscaping plan to Vestry.  It was decided to implement the first stage of the plan, which involved roads and retaining walls. There were 452 contributors in 1946.  The AND Company started an Employee Pension Plan.  Some of the pensioners left town and Church contributions were reduced considerably. In 1947 it was noted that the Parish Church Association, St. Hilda’s Guild and the Windsor C. of. E. Sewing Class were particularly active. Early 1947 saw the  the loan for the clergy house on 5 Exploits Avenue, repaid. It was discovered that the collar beams were coming out of the rafters of the Church.  Repairs were effected by installing tie rods. In 1947, the C.L.B. observed the 25th Anniversary of its formation in Grand Falls, and in that year, the Old Comrades Association was formed.  A C.L.B. Band was organized in 1947 and Company Colours were presented by Mr. Philip Grouchy in memory of his son, Philip, who lost his life in World War II. In 1948 in the Parish of Grand Falls, the staff was increased by one priest, in the person of the Rev. John Moss, who resided in Gander and served Gander and nearby places. On December 1, 1949,  the new Parish of Gander was constituted with the Rev. John Moss as its first Rector.  This meant that the Ven. E.M. Bishop was relieved from the oversight of Gander, which he had exercised since 1938. As of Dec. 1, 1949,  the Parish of Grand Falls extended from Badger to Bishop’s Falls.  Later, Badger became part of the Parish of Buchans. The Anglican Young People’s Association ( AYPA ) was formed in 1948. On June 12, 1948,  Mr. Philip Grouchy, Vice-President and General Manager of the A.N.D. Company and a member of Holy Trinity Church, was listed amongst those honoured by His Majesty the King in His Birthday Honours List.  Mr Grouchy received his well merited award, the C.B.E., for his work in shipping throughout the last war and for his fine work in the town of Grand Falls. On August 15, 1949, Rev. Roland and Mrs. Farwell left the parish for Lennoxville P.Q. Mrs. M. MacPherson was hired to do clerical work, formerly done by the Rector. Also in 1949,  the Parish welcomed Rev. R.S. and Mrs. Sheppard to Grand Falls.  He held his first service at Holy Trinity on October 18. On Sept. 7th at the General Synod in Halifax NS,  the Newfoundland Diocese became part of the Anglican Church of Canada
 1950   June 4, 1950 ,the Canadian Prayer and Hymn Books were introduced for use at Holy Trinity on Trinity Sunday. In 1950 the Parish contributed to the Manitoba Flood Relief. In 1951 a new lighting system was completed for the Church. Mr. James Lind, Mr. L.R. Cooper,  Mr. R. Blake and Mr. A. Gillett  and Mr. Wm. Morrow were active on this project. In 1951 Select Vestry began paying 3% of the clergy’s stipend to the Clergy Retirement Fund. Sunday, July 1, 1951 was a special day in the life of the Parish when the  War Memorial Shrine was dedicated by the Right Rev. Philip S. Abraham,  the Bishop of Newfoundland. The funeral of Mr. L. R. Cooper, O.B.E. took place on October 3, 1951. He had been an active member of Holy Trinity for forty years. It was decided not to move Sunday School to the morning. Children do not get up to attend church on Sunday morning because they were up late Saturday night listening to the hockey broadcast. Later,  ( in the 1980’s)  children came in large numbers to the morning Sunday School. The proposal to purchase an electric stove for the Parish Hall was discussed,  but it was decided that an electric stove would be too dangerous. Therefore the coal stove remained in use. In the Winter of 1952,  at the request of the Bishop, Holy Trinity Parish sent the Rev. D. P. Graham to minister to the people of Gander Bay.  Rev. Graham left Grand Falls in March 1952. Mr. Thomas Brown, a valued member of  Holy Trinity,  passed away at the age of 78,  and was laid to rest on May 9, 1952. He was the designer and builder of the Nave of Holy Trinity Church. He supervised the construction of the Parish Hall, the Rectory and the school at Windsor. He made and donated the pulpit still used at Holy Trinity to day. On July 1, 1952  the Church of England people at Windsor formed a separate congregation. A new school was built and two rooms were reserved for church services. Previously, they were members of the Grand Falls congregation. The new congregation would be part of the Parish of Grand Falls. In 1952,  the Parish Church Association and St. Hilda’s Guild became the Women’s Auxiliary. There was an active branch of the Junior Auxiliary, with 52 members from 8 to 12 years of age. A special service was held on Sunday, May 31, 1953,  it being the Sunday preceding the Coronation of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, the Second. The Ven. Archdeacon E. M. Bishop suffered a severe illness in 1953 but was able to be present at annual meeting on March 29, 1954.  His Silver Jubilee as Rector of Holy Trinity was celebrated on May 23, 1954. On June 12, 1954, Mr. and Mrs. George Saunders celebrated their 60th Wedding Anniversary.  Mr. Saunders was the first superintendent of Sunday Schools from 1910 - 1939. In 1954 the C.L.B. had a membership of 75  and a brass band of 20 with Capt. M.A.C.  Willar O.C. The A.Y.P.A. of 1953-54 had a successful year with Howard Miller as Pres., Warren Down, Secty., and Jean Mercer Treasurer. On December 19, 1954,  the Rector announced that a contract had been signed with the Wells Organization to conduct a canvass for pledges for a new church. On  January 31,1955 it was reported that Holy Trinity Congregation had 399 wage earners and that pledges for 150 weeks were made by 373 persons for a total amount of  $147,861.00. The remainder would not pledge but were willing to contribute. March 13, 1955, the Ven. E. M. Bishop announced that he would be resigning on June 30, 1955. A letter was written from the congregation expressing its regret that he found it impossible to carry on his work as Rector. The Archdeacon and Mrs. Bishop were presented with a cheque from the people. Archdeacon served the Parish well for over 25 yrs. The Rev. R. S. Sheppard succeeded the Ven. Archdeacon E.M. Bishop as Rector of Grand Falls Parish. He was inducted on July 3, 1955 and conducted his first service  as Rector on July 10, 1955. In the Fall of 1955 the Parish was extended to include Grand Falls, Windsor, Bishop’s Falls, Badger, Springdale, Rushy Pond, Coffee Cove, Little Bay and King’s Point. The Rector announced that the Rev. Ray Brett would be ordained to the Priesthood in June 1956.  It was decided to present him with a gift when he left the Parish. Rev. A. T. Tulk, who was living in Bishop’s Falls with his son Dr. G.D. Tulk, assisted in the Parish during the Summer.   On August 31 we were visited by Bishop DeMel of  Ceylon ( now Sri Lanka ).  Bishop De Mel and party were met at the Exploits Ferry, Bishop’s Falls and a motorcade of about 35 cars proceeded to Grand Falls. As of  September 30, 1956,  the amount of $58,728.00 had been paid into the Church Building Fund. Rev. R. P. Walters conducted his first service as the new Assistant Priest on September 30 1956.  He remained here until September, 1958 and was succeeded by  the Rev. C. Haynes. It was decided to have one service at 9:30 am  on Sunday October 28, 1956.  This would permit  members of the congregation to listen to a special radio broadcast from St. John’s. The broadcast was of the Consecration and Enthronement of  the Right Rev. John A. Meaden, as Bishop of Newfoundland taking place at 10:30 am  and 6:30 pm. At a meeting on October 25, 1956,   it was pointed out by Mr. James Lind that it was the duty of the Vestry to do something about the lagging church finances and that, as a Vestry,  they should make a strong plea to the people in this regard. The Rt. Rev. John A. Meadon, Bishop, visited Grand Falls from November 25 to 28, 1956. Confirmation Services were held. A reception for the Bishop and Mrs. Meaden was held in the Town Hall, with Clergy and Civic Officials as special guests. The annual meeting of the congregation was held on February 18, 1957 with 200 members  attending. In June, 1957 the Select Vestry re-organized the whole financial system. What was known as the  'Wells Campaign'  came to an end.  Under the new system all contributions to the Church would be made through one envelope.  From these envelopes will come the money needed for ordinary operating expenses of the church, rectory, clergy house and parish hall, as well as stipends and salaries, diocesan appeal and diocesan assessments. Contributions to the Building Fund would continue to be credited to the Building Fund. Mr. Reginald Blake was appointed accountant for this new system. Mr John Cater was appointed assistant,  with Mr. A.M. Noel as Envelope Secretary. October 13, 1957- a special congregational meeting passed a motion ‘to engage a firm of architects to prepare plans of a church suitable to the congregation’. The first ordination service in Holy Trinity Church was held when the Rev. Jacob Rogers was ordained on November 2, 1958. A Mission was conducted by the Right Rev. R.L. Seaborn in Holy Trinity Church from November 30 to December 7, 1958. The services were well attended. May 6, 1959 - The Rt. Rev. R. L. Seaborn led a ‘Breaking of the Ground’ Service for the new Church. June 1959 preliminary plans of a new church were presented to the congregation. The plans were approved in principle and Vestry was authorized to proceed with the ‘dismantling of the old and the construction of the new church’. The spire was removed. The bell was stored in the basement of the Parish Hall and later installed in the new church of St. Alban’s in Windsor. Early in October, 1959,  a contract was signed with the firm of Craig, Madill, Horwood, Abram and Ingleson to prepare final plans and supervise construction of the new church                   
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