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St. Stephen's Anglican Church
Bay St. George, Nfld.
Picture taken from Turbulent Tides, A Social History of Sandy Point
In 1835 Archdeacon Edward Wix made his second visit to the West Coast of Newfoundland to appoint a clergyman and to assist in the building of a Anglican Church at Sandy Point. In 1841 Rev. William Meek arrived at Sandy Point to supervise the building of the church, new school and a mission house. St. Stephen's Anglican Church was completed in 1845
Bishop Edward Field arrived with his entourage of two priests and a deacon to consecrate the new church. Later that afternoon the Bishop dedicated an ancient burial ground in the community.
The Parish was set up in 1874. Its boundaries covered the area which embraced the entire Port au Port Peninsula to Mattis Point. Early records indicate that Msgr. Thomas Sears looked after the area and later a Father Joseph Veronneau came around 1876. Father McInnis later followed him. Father M. O'Rourke served the parish for roughly twenty years until 1899. As time went on new parishes were built. The first was the Parish of Port au Port. In 1937 the Parish of Stephenville Crossing was created.
Stephen Gallant was the first of the Acadian immigrants to be born in Stephenville and was brought to Margaree, Nova Scotia to be baptized. The first record of a baptism for St. Stephen's Parish belongs to a Samuel Hynes, son of W. Hynes and Caroline Marche baptized on October 2, 1874. It was Father P. W. Brown who succeeded Dean M. .O'Rourke who built the first school at Mattis Point around the turn of the century.
His successor was Msgr. P. F. Adams who came to Newfoundland from the Gaspe Peninsula in Quebec and served as parish priest from 1906 until 1937. It was during his time that the church which was built around 1909 was destroyed by fire on October 19, 1969.
After the fire of October 19, 1969, a committee was set up to plan the building of the present church. On May 29, 1971, the first Mass in the new church was celebrated and on 4 June, 1994 it was officially blessed by Bishop Richard T. McGrath. Celebrations marking the 25th anniversary took place in 1996.
Today the Parish has approximately 6,000 parishioners.
History taken from Diocese of St. George's internet sight. Picture taken from Turbulent Tides, A Social History of Sandy Point
Contributor / Coordinator:
West Coast District
Brenda Janes, Codroy, NF
Page Revised: July 2002 (Don Tate)
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