Churches of Leduc

Pipestone Flyer

Peace Lutheran 1936

 

    In the mid 1750’s Anthony Henday returned to York with tales about his journeys to the west. He had volunteered to explore the lands to the west in hope of improving his image. Henday had been a fisherman, net-maker, and a general laborer. What the Hudson Bay didn’t know when they hired him was he had been outlawed as a smuggler and had come west to escape a trial.

    By the end of his travels Henday had penetrated deeper into the west than any other explorer and contributed much of Hudson Bay’s knowledge of the lands it claimed and the First Nations peoples who inhabited them. It would be this knowledge that would drift back to the east and encourage others to follow his trail.

    By the middle of the 1800’s a number of churches had established missions among First Nations cultures. The first missionaries to come were Oblates of Mary Immaculate soon followed by efforts by Anglican and Methodists missionaries.

    By the 1890’s the churches began to address the influx of homesteaders from the USA and Europe. Father Leduc would be instrumental in the establishing the first church for Leduc when St Benedict’s opened its doors in 1896. The church would serve Leduc residents until the 1920’s when the need for a bigger church was recognized and St Benedict’s would be replaced, in 1930, by St Michael’s built near the church’s original site. 

    Eventually St. Benedict’s would be dismantled with much of the material being used in the construction of the Peace Lutheran Church in 1936.

    Father Leduc’s efforts drew the interests of other churches and their missionaries. Alexander McDonald would hold Baptist services in the log cabin of Mr. and Mrs. Hiram Hamilton, before seeing the construction of the Leduc Baptist Church in 1903. To fund the building of the church Rev. McDonald mortgaged his own home. In 1907 to recognize his efforts the Baptists of Edmonton build the McDonald Memorial Church. In 1943 the church changed its name from Second to Temple. Unfortunately the original Leduc Temple Baptist Church was destroyed by fire in June 1950, a few months before the Leduc Hotel explosion. The church was rebuilt and dedicated in the spring of 1951. In 1980 the church moved to its current location in Southfork.

    1898 saw the establishment of one of the first “United” Churches when the Methodist and the Presbyterian congregations working under the guidance of Rev. Dr. David G. McQueen built a church in Clearwater and St David’s in Leduc.  It would take the Methodist and Presbyterian Churches until 1911 to officially join to become the United Church, but the members living in Leduc had already realized that they had far more in common and the benefits of combining forces to built a church. In 1906 a big imposing man of over six feet stepped off the train with his wife to begin a six-year mission as the minister of St David’s. Rev. T. Thompson Reikie would not allow the mud of the spring or the deep snow of winter to prevent him from making his rounds to Clearwater, Ellerslie, and places in between as well as Leduc. By the time Rev. Reikie left in 1912 he was already recognized as one of the first “United” ministers long before the formal uniting of the churches in 1911.

    In 1900 the St Peter’s Evangelical Lutheran Church began services in Nisku. That same year a falling tree injured a Mr. John Borys while he was clearing a site for the first Russian-Greek Orthodox Church, St Mary’s, shortly after Rev. Pavlo Tymkiewicz had consecrated the land. 

    Rev. Henry Allan Gray would work in the Conjuring Creek with the English families that had come from Kansas to establish homesteads and over the years other Anglican ministers followed him. Eventually he oversaw the opening of the St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Leduc. Rev. Gray would become Edmonton’s first Anglican Bishop. By 1904 the St Paul Anglican Church had joined the growing number of churches serving the residents of Leduc and area.

    Today Leduc has over a dozen churches and with the rapid growth in population with people coming from all over the world there is little doubt that even more religious groups will develop their places of worship. They may start, like our forefathers did in the homes of settlers, but eventually, as their numbers grow they will find the opportunity to build a permanent place to worship and join the community of Leduc’s churches. 

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

Just Posted

Alberta Health Services' central zone jumped from 162 active COVID-19 cases to 178 on Friday. Five additional deaths were reported provincewide, bringing the toll to 323. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
622 new COVID-19 cases set another daily high Friday

Province confirmed 622 additional cases Friday

City of Wetaskiwin Mayor presenting the AUMA Above & Beyond Award to John Maude and Susan Quinn. Ren Goode/ City of Wetaskiwin.
Wetaskiwin County residents win the AUMA Above & Beyond Award

John Maude and Susan Quinn are being recognized for their role in Wetaskiwin’s sustainability.

Alberta children whose only symptom of COVID-19 is a runny nose or a sore throat will no longer require mandatory isolation, starting Monday.
477 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in Alberta on Thursday

Changes being made to the COVID-19 symptom list for school-age children

There were 410 COVID-19 cases recorded in Alberta Wednesday. (File photo)
Alberta records 410 COVID-19 cases Wednesday

Central zone dropped to 160 active cases

Shaun Isaac, owner of Woodchucker Firewood in Trochu, is awaiting a new shipment during a firewood shortage in the province. All of the wood he has left is being saved for long-time customers who need it to heat their homes. (Contributed photo).
Firewood shortage in central Alberta caused by rising demand, gaps in supply

‘I’ve said “No” to more people than ever’: firewood seller

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole rises during Question Period in the House of Commons in Ottawa on Wednesday October 28, 2020. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Conversion therapy ban gets approval in principle, exposes Conservative divisions

Erin O’Toole himself voted in favour of the bill, as did most Conservative MPs

Pilots Ilona Carter and Jim Gray of iRecover Treatment Centres, in front of his company’s aircraft, based at Ponoka’s airport. (Perry Wilson/Submitted)
95-year-old Ilona Carter flies again

Takes to the skies over Ponoka

Children’s backpacks and shoes are seen at a daycare in Langley, B.C., on Tuesday May 29, 2018. Alberta Children’s Services Minister Rebecca Schulz says the province plans to bring in a new way of licensing and monitoring child-care facilities. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Alberta proposes legislation to change rules on child-care spaces

Record-keeping, traditionally done on paper, would be allowed digitally

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau shakes hands with US Vice-President Joe Biden on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, December 9, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
A Biden presidency could mean good news for Canadian environment policy: observers

Experts and observers say even a U.S. outside the Paris agreement may ultimately end up in the same place

People take a photo together during the opening night of Christmas Lights Across Canada, in Ottawa, on Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019. The likelihood that most Canadians will enjoy a holly jolly Christmas season of gatherings, caroling and travel is unlikely, say public health experts who encourage those who revel in holiday traditions to accept more sacrifices ahead. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Ho, ho, no: Experts advise preparing for a scaled-back COVID holiday season

Many of the holiday season’s highlights have already been scrapped or are unlikely to take place

Sen. Kim Pate is shown in Toronto in an October 15, 2013, file photo. The parliamentary budget office says a proposed law that would give judges discretion on whether to apply a lesser sentence for murder could save the federal government $8.3 million per year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel
Judicial discretion for mandatory minimum sentences for murder would save $8.3M: PBO

The result would be fewer people in long-term custody at federal correctional institutions, experts say

Husky Energy logo is shown at the company’s annual meeting in Calgary on May 5, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Husky pipeline spills 900,000 litres of produced water in northwestern Alberta

The energy regulator says environmental contractors are at the site

Most Read