Funding secured for completion of St. Eugene Mission Church restoration

The St. Eugene Mission Church is a step closer to its former glory after receiving funding to complete a restoration project.

  • Jul. 31, 2015 2:00 p.m.
St. Eugene Mission Church

St. Eugene Mission Church

For the Townsman

The St. Eugene Mission Church is a step closer to its former glory after receiving necessary funding to complete a much-anticipated restoration project.

Western Economic Diversification Canada today announced a $75,000 contribution to the restoration of the church, which has been a pillar of the ?aq’am (St. Mary’s Band) community since its construction in 1897. While significant work to replace the foundation of the building was completed in 2011, safety and conservation concerns have forced the church to remain closed for more than a decade.

“The Community of ?aq’am has taken great care over the years maintaining the iconic St. Eugene Church; this heritage building is a testament of the pride we take in our history,” explained Nasukin (Chief) Jim Whitehead.

“I am eager for ?aq’amnik to see the St. Eugene Church restoration take place.”

The funding will be used for various repairs to the building, including the replacement of siding, re-stabilization of the chimney and repairs to the roof, in addition to several upgrades to exterior structures and landscaping. The final stage will see the interior statues of the church repainted and restored to represent their original beauty.

Many other individuals and organizations join Western Economic Diversification Canada as benefactors to the extensive project, including a recent $37,500 contribution from Columbia Basin Trust and more than $15,000 worth of donations from individuals. In 2010, Teck Coal Ltd. provided $100,000 to ensure the successful completion of the foundation repair phase.

To learn more about the St. Eugene Mission Church Restoration Project, contact Jodi Gravelle, Chief Operating Officer at (250) 426-5717 or by email at jgravelle@aqam.net