Hands on ministry at Holy Trinity

The first Anglican priest resident in Sooke was the Reverend John Lancaster.

The first Anglican priest resident in Sooke was the Reverend John Lancaster. The year was 1963 and John and Miriam were newly married. A cottage next to the church had been renovated as a manse.

The young couple were just the right assets for the parish and for Sooke in that time.  Tall, dark and handsome John got right to work improving the church alongside the men of the parish.

This 1964 photograph, copied from the Grapevine (forerunner of the Sooke News Mirror) demonstrates hand mixing concrete for the basement floor of the original Holy Trinity Anglican Church on Murray Road. Holy Trinity celebrates its 100th anniversary this summer, and the Lancasters mark their 50th wedding anniversary this August as well.

Miriam joined in with other Sooke women to teach Red Cross swimming classes at Sunny Shores open air pool. John got right to work with the guys in the community, helping with All Sooke Day and the activities of Sooke Community Association. He served as a director, and in 1967 as chair of that organization.

1967 was Canada’s Centennial year, and it fell to John to chair Sooke’s Centennial Committee as well. His easy humour made him a favourite with youth groups who met in the refurbished church basement, and with the adults as well. He laughingly recalls  “I started out at All Sooke Day, clearing the picnic tables and picking up garbage, and rose through the ranks to become chair.”

John and family left Sooke in 1968, he then studied in Princeton, N.J. before joining the staff of Christ Church Cathedral in Victoria. They spent 1976 in St. Andrews Scotland, then returned to Victoria. He was then appointed Archdeacon of Quatsino and rector of the Church of St John the Divine in Courtenay.  Both John and Miriam, a piano teacher and church music director for many years, are now retired and live in Vancouver.

Elida Peers, Historian

Sooke Region Museum

Just Posted

Victoria-bound plane slides off icy Edmonton runway

Crew, passengers had to disembark via bridge stairs

VIDEO: Hundreds gather in Victoria as part of global Women’s March for equality

‘End Violence Against Women’ march theme for 2019

Mudslide closes viewing area at Sooke Potholes

Safety concerns have led to the closure

Second co-housing community planned for Sooke

Community described as a ‘new way of living’

WATCH: Medieval fighters train in Colwood

Fighters are gearing up for world championships in medieval combat

Want to avoid the speculation tax on your vacant home? Rent it out, Horgan says

Premier John Horgan and Sheila Malcolmson say speculation and vacancy tax addresses homelessness

CONSUMER REPORT: What to buy each month in 2019 to save money

Resolve to buy all of the things you want and need, but pay less money for them

UPDATE: B.C. woman and boy, 6, found safe, RCMP confirm

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

PHOTOS: Women’s Marches take to the streets across B.C. and beyond

Women and allies marched worldwide protesting violence against women, calling for equality

Anxiety in Alaska as endless aftershocks rattle residents

Seismologists expect the temblors to continue for months, although the frequency has lessened

Women’s March returns across the U.S. amid shutdown and controversy

The original march in 2017, the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, drew hundreds of thousands of people

Federal Liberals announce former B.C. MLA as new candidate in byelection

Richard Lee will face off against federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh

Most Read