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It’s the people, not the steeple


St. Peter’s Anglican Church in Wabush may be closing its doors, but the congregation isn’t going anywhere.

Photo by Ty Dunham/The Aurora
St. Peter’s Anglican Church will close its doors with a deconsecration service Wednesday, April 8, after serving Wabush for approximately 40 years, but Reverend Jolene Peters said the church community will remain strong.

A deconsecration service will be held at St. Peter’s on April 8 at 7 p.m., secularizing the building so it’s no longer a sacred space but available for secular use.

For approximately 40 years the parish served the community of Wabush.

But after years of a dwindling congregation — until it averaged just 20 people each Sunday — members of St. Peter’s brought up the need to close the doors at an annual meeting last May.

Reverend Jolene Peters said members agreed to wait until fall to make the decision, as low numbers were always expected during summer months.

The Bishop visited in area in September, when members voted to close the doors as of Easter, 2015.

 

Not an easy decision

“It’s not been an easy decision or one they made overnight, it’s been years in the making,” said Peters.

“I think they realized they couldn’t keep doing what they were doing with the numbers.”

Peters said it’s been difficult for everyone involved, but a necessary step.

“It’s sad to see it go, nobody wants to see a church close anywhere, you hope to see it open and thriving. I feel the same as the people, ready to make this decision but it is very sad.”

While it’s disheartening to see such a beautiful structure blend into the background of the community, Peters said the church will stay firm.

“The church is the community of people who come together, they support each other in the difficult times of life and they celebrate their moments of joy together. “They’re on the journey together as a community of Christian people.”

Since making the vote to close the parish, many have joined fellow Anglican members at St. Paul’s in Labrador City, and Peters said numbers there have strengthened.

“I think we’ll come out stronger through this. People are learning something more. We might not have two churches anymore, but we have one and we can still do our ministries and services.”

 

ty.dunham@tc.tc

 

 

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