Holy Trinity Anglican Church circa 1920.

Holy Trinity Anglican Church circa 1920.

Holy Trinity serves Sooke for 100 years

Elida Peers writes about the history of Anglican church

With today’s modern heating that we take for granted, perhaps it’s good to remember that after Sooke’s Holy Trinity Anglican Church was built 100 years ago, someone had to get up early to light the furnace before Sunday service.

While many parishioners have shared that chore over the years, one who stands out is Sid Gates, a Britisher who lived with his wife Maggie near the brow of the hill on Otter Point Road that looks down towards the harbour and Murray Road.

This 1920 photo shows the shingled facade of Holy Trinity Church on Murray Road in its infancy.  Retired from a lifetime of farming and dairying, it was in the 1940s and 50s that Sid Gates rose in the dark, walked with a lantern the four blocks down to the church, got the furnace well started, walked back up the hill and made his wife a cup of tea.

Maggie Gates had been a British Nursing Sister in the First World War and met Sid in France where he had been injured in the service. When they retired to Sooke, Maggie taught Sunday school and was a member of the church’s Women’s Auxiliary.

Readers who have lived here more than the last decade will recognize the venerable church, consecrated in 1913, that served its flock until it was razed by fire in 2005.  The tall, gable-roofed structure was built in 1912 by the Richardson brothers.

Many were drawn to watch sadly as the unexpected blaze devoured the building.  I recall standing by our town’s mayor of that day, who had tears in her eyes.  Hard as it was for the parishioners to accept the shock of the loss, they pulled themselves together and by 2007 a fine new structure stood proudly in its place.

Not only did the parish’s men and women rebuild, they saw to it that the church continued to house community activities such as the weekly Vital Vittles lunch that has become a tradition.

Nowadays the group is making plans to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Anglican Church in Sooke, with special events ahead throughout 2013. Sid and Maggie Gates would be proud!

Elida Peers,

Historian

Sooke Region Museum

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Shore RCMP responded to 164 calls for service over the last weekend, including numerous violent assaults. (Black Press Media file photo)
West Shore RCMP responds to 164 calls for service over weekend

Calls included numerous bear spray assaults and domestic violence incidents

Sewer construction will mean limited access to West Shore Parkway from Sooke Road for the next week. (Courtesy of the City of Langford)
West Shore Parkway access limited from Sooke Road

Crews working on sewer construction for the next week

The Capital Regional District has issued a boil water advisory for the Wilderness Mountain Water Service Area in East Sooke. (Katja Just - Pixabay.com)
Boil water advisory issued in East Sooke

It’s better to boil and be safe than sorry you didn’t. The… Continue reading

Victoria police are looking for a 38-year-old man after he allegedly assaulted and choked a missing 15-year-old victim in Beacon Hill Park Tuesday night. (Black Press Media file photo)
15-year-old choked in Beacon Hill tent, Victoria police assaulted while intervening

Police searching for 38-year-old suspect, two officers injured in altercation with park residents

Janitors at Uptown Shopping Centre voted to strike April 20, citing increased risk from the pandemic, minimum wage pay and no paid sick days. (Black Press Media file photo)
Janitors at Uptown Shopping Centre in Saanich vote to strike

Workers say they’re working in high-risk conditions with near minimum wage pay

A large crowd protested against COVID-19 measures at Sunset Beach in Vancouver on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. (Snapchat)
VIDEO: Large, police-patrolled crowds gather at Vancouver beach for COVID protests

Vancouver police said they patrolled the area and monitored all gatherings

Canadian driver Paul Tracy pulls out of the pits during the morning session at the Molson Indy in Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, July 26, 2003 (CP/Richard Lam)
Vancouver is considering hosting a Formula E race using electric cars

The race would be part of a three-day event focused on climate and sustainability

Chart from the April 20 B.C. budget shows sharp dip in real estate sales early in the COVID-19 pandemic and the even steeper climb since late 2020. (B.C. government)
Hot B.C. housing market drives property transfer tax gains

B.C. budget boosts tobacco, sweet drinks, carbon taxes

President Joe Biden holds a virtual bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
U.S. to help Canada with more COVID-19 vaccine supply, Biden says

The U.S. has already provided Canada with about 1.5 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine

B.C.’s 2021 budget is trending in the right direction to support farmers, says the BC Fruit Growers’ Association. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
BC Fruit Growers’ Association gives thumbs up to provincial budget

BCFGA general manager said budgetary investments put farming industry on a good trajectory for recovery

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson leaves the assembly with Premier John Horgan after the budget speech Tuesday, April 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Paid sick leave for ‘hard-hit’ workers left out of provincial budget: BCGEU

‘For recovery to be equitable it requires supports for workers, not just business,’ says union president Laird Cronk

In this image from video, former Minneapolis police Officer Derek Chauvin, center, is taken into custody as his attorney, Eric Nelson, left, looks on, after the verdicts were read at Chauvin’s trial for the 2020 death of George Floyd, Tuesday, April 20, 2021, at the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minn. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Court TV via AP, Pool
George Floyd’s death was ‘wake-up call’ about systemic racism: Trudeau

Derek Chauvin was found guilty Tuesday on all three charges against him

Most Read