History

Background

The year 1883, when the first St George’s was established in Winnipeg, was an exciting and vibrant one for the city. According to the Hudson’s Bay Company Land Commissioner the population was closer to 30,000 than 25,000. Old Fort Garry was being demolished so that Main Street could be widened. A good many emigrants, almost all from Ontario, were arriving. Main Street was the business district with large buildings being erected, including the Empress Hotel, which many Winnipeggers will remember. The St George’s Society was flourishing and the first Department Store in Western Canada opened at Broadway and Main.

William and Lydia school house, 1883.

William and Lydia school house, 1883.

In The Beginning

Families living west of Main Street had to attend St John’s or Christ Church, so they decided to start a new one.

1883
First St George’s established at William and Lydia in a converted school house. The Rev. James O’Meara, priest-in-charge

1886
Second St George’s established at Isabel & Bannatyne – a charming looking church.

The first priest of the second church, The Rev. Josiah Jesse Roy, was a direct descendant of Abraham Martin, on whose property the Battle of the Plains of Abraham was fought. It was said that he “promoted temperance with an intemperate zeal”.

Isabel & Bannatyne location, 1894.

Isabel & Bannatyne location, 1894.

1894
Cornerstone laid for a new church at Isabel Street and Bannatyne Avenue.

From North to South

The demographics of Winnipeg were changing rapidly. A decision was made to move the church to a more residential area.

1916
‘Mission church’ established at Grosvenor & Wilton.

1918
The Reverend Henry David Martin inducted 29 December. Arrived in September but could not conduct services until December owing to the Spanish influenza.

Mission church, Grosvenor & Wilton, 1916.

Mission church, Grosvenor & Wilton, 1916.

1921
Annual meeting reported 30 baptisms, 7 weddings, 22 confirmations, ll funerals and an average Sunday School attendance of 250.

1926
New church built, incorporating the old one, doubling the capacity.

1930s
Social role of the church important. The church was the community and the community was the church. Active mission ministry in used clothing and food. Vesper Hour was broadcast by CBC from St George’s every Sunday at 4 ‘clock. In 1934 there were 631 Easter communicants.

Rebuilt Mission church, Grosvenor & Wilton, 1926.

Rebuilt Mission church, Grosvenor & Wilton, 1926.

1940s
The Rev. George Dowker inducted as Rector in January 1940. His ministry had many sad moments which were spent consoling families whose relatives had been killed in World War II. In 1941, 142 parishioners were reported on active service. Lieutenant Governor R.F. McWilliams, in 1943, unveiled plaques stating the names of the 15 parishioners killed during the War 1914 – 1918, and the 204 men who served during 1939-1945.

1944
The Church was declared free of debt.

1954
New Parish Hall formally opened with its Honour Roll of 42 men who gave their lives in the Second World War.

Church interior, 1926.

Church interior, 1926.

1956
Stewart M. Thomson succeeds Donald Legatt as Organist and Choirmaster on 1 January, 1956.

1957 -1958
Cornerstone for the new church laid. First service held Palm Sunday, 31 March 1958. surmounted by an aluminum cross. The Interior walls are Tyndall stone and the pillars of Italian mosaic glass tile.

The Sixties and Seventies

St George’s continued to be a vibrant Christian community.

1962
The Reverend F. Roy Gartrell, who had served St George’s since January of 1945, resigned to become Dean of Ottawa. In June George Stegen appointed Rector.

1964
14 of the choir boys entered solo classes at the Manitoba Music Festival. Only three of the solos received marks under 80.

1965
A choir of 30 girls sang at the 9.30 service.

1966
Inauguration of the children’s ‘Midnight Communion’ at 7.00 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

1969
The Rev. Dr Arthur N. Thompson appointed Rector

1973
Consecration of St George’s and the burning of the mortgage

1976
St George’s boy choristers won first in four out of five classes entered at the Winnipeg Music Festival

1983 – ST GEORGE’S CENTENNIAL YEAR

1984
The Rev. Dr Arthur N. Thompson resigned effective 30 April

84/85
The Rev. Canon Ralph Baxter appointed priest-in-charge

1985
The Rev. William R. Duff inducted as Rector

1986
Book of Alternate Services used for the first time in August

1993
New kitchen completed

1993
Purchased Steinway Grand Piano

1997
The Rev. William R. Duff retires

1998
The Rev.Canon J. A. (Tony) Harwood-Jones inducted as Rector

THE NEW MILLENNIUM

2003
New website developed

2005

        St George’s sponsored a family of seven from Uganda.

Stewart M. Thomson retires after 50 years as Organist and Choirmaster

The Rev . Canon J. A. (Tony) Harwood-Jones retires

Venerable Donna Ball appointed Interim Rector

Rick Morgan appointed as Organist and Choirmaster in July

2006
Provided new water supply for the village of Bulo, in Central Buganda Uganda, at a cost of $60,700.

2007
The Rev. Lyndon Hutchison-Hounsell appointed as Incumbent Priest

2008

Celebrated the 125th Anniversary of the Parish, and the 50th Anniversary of the present church.  Installed a new boiler

2009

Water system in Uganda extended to Kiddimule at a cost of $30,000

2011 
Parishioners vote 96% in favour of blessing same-sex marriages

The choir sang the daily services in Lincoln Cathedral (England) in August for 1 week

2012

Breaking Down Barriers – the bus pass project was established with Norquay School in the inner city.

The Rev.Lyndon Hutchison-Hounsell started a new appointment in London, Ontario

2013

The Rev. Brent Neumann appointed as interim priest

2015

The Venerable Simon Blaikie appointed as our new Rector.

2016

June – the church sponsored the Alzaayat family of four from Syria.