Landmarks, Monuments & Built Heritage of the West

St. Mary's Church

St. Mary's Church was located in Mountain Road, Manitoba.  The church was a local landmark.  It was designed and built by famed Ukrainian architect Father Philip Ruh.  The church played a very important part in the lives of the residents of Mountain Road.  People attended church here every Sunday.  It was the site of many picnics and recreational activities.  Everyone admired its unique design and structure.  But on August 19, 1966, the church was struck by lightning, caught fire and burned to the ground.

Can you imagine how the people of Mountain Road must have felt seeing their much loved and respected church on fire?  Do you think they felt sad when there was nothing left of the church?  Do you think they felt angry?  Do you think they were worried that they would be without a church for a long time?

Watch the video of the St. Mary's Church on fire.  The video also shows the church before it caught on fire and the remains of the church after the fire was put out.  While watching the video also listen to two residents of Mountain Road who had close ties to the church tell stories of how the church was constructed and the effects the loss of the church had on the community.

Think of a landmark or popular place or building in your community or neighbourhood.  How would you feel if that place was damaged through vandalism or completely destroyed by a fire?


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