Sunday, February 24, 2013

2260 Philip Avenue

Posthumous (2015)
Capilano United Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

Capilano United Church is nestled near the northern border of Pemberton Heights, the high residential bluff in the south western section of the District of North Vancouver.  North of the church is the Upper Levels Highway, the homes in Capilano Highlands, and then the peaks of Grouse Mountain. 


"Capilano United Church was established as Capilano Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Canada, and served by a student from the Presbyterian College in Vancouver, Westminster Hall. Services were held in the community schoolhouse until the construction of the Capilano Union Church in 1925. It was formally instituted as a United Church in 1927 and in 1938 became a part of the North Lonsdale-Capilano Pastoral Charge. In 1957 the charge was divided and Capilano United Church became a charge on its own. A Christian Education Building, to house an active Sunday school program, was added to church in 1961..." (Link 1.)

In the sanctuary, the cross below the round stained glass window and the baptismal font were both made by Joe Lightheart, an early member of the congregation.  He cut the inlay pieces for the cross with an old Singer treadle sewing machine with needle replaced by a saw blade. The communion table was a donation from a different congregant. (REF.)

The round stained glass window is also a cross. It was designed in the 1990's by congregation  member Doug Bentley.  Its symbolism also includes references to the North Shore mountains and trees. (REF.) The colors pink, yellow, blue and green echo those on the top sections of the side windows.  the original round window also included these colors, but was made up of eight pie shaped pieces.

All the triple side windows include the pink, green, yellow, and blue colors along the square panels of the top frame. However, the square panels of the bottom frames are different on the north and south sides of the sanctuary.  The south facing windows are opaque to diffuse the sunlight. (REF.) The north facing windows are clear allowing the congregation to be inspired by the trees and mountain view.

Clear Glass North Windows of Sanctuary

The west wall of the narthex is floor to ceiling colored glass.  It is shown in the interior photo below as well as on the exterior wall in the top photo. 

West Wall of Sanctuary Narthex 
(See left exterior side of church in top photo.)

"According to the little history that was written up about the church, with information taken from the church archives, on March 25, 1925, the congregation voted to build the church building at a cost of $2,000...  The church building was opened and was filled to capacity with over 200 people on October 1, 1925..." (REF.) The actual building of the church was done by members of the congregation.  The land for the church was donated by B.C. Electric. The church site at this time was near the end of the B.C. Electric Tram line.  The narthex addition on the west side of the church seems to have been built in the 1950's.  The church entrance was changed to the south side of the building.  At some point the original church was lifted and a basement added.

Thank you: To office help Dianna Wilson for a tour of the church.
Reference:   E mails from Board Chair Sandi McIntosh Kocaba with references
                 from her mother Gerry McIntosh and her mother's "little church
                 history book".
Photos: Taken in 2013 by SW. Link 1:
Link 1:;rad

Note: Spring 2015 the church was bought by  North Vancouver District and will
            be used as a Community Center.


God, be with persecuted Christians throughout the world. Amen (SW.)

Sunday, February 17, 2013

                                                                                                       February 17, 2013

                                                         1400 Sutherland Avenue

Evangelical Free Church
North Vancouver, B.C.

The Evangelical Free Church was the original building on the corner of Sutherland Ave. and East 14th Street.  It can be seen as the right, lower building in the photo above.  According to the City Directories at the North Vancouver Archives The North Vancouver Evangelical Free Church first met in the home of its pastor the Rev. Emil G. Axene at 1416 Sutherland Ave. in 1949.  In  1952 a separate building  is listed for The North Vancouver Evangelical Church.  It is listed as being on the east side of the 1400 block of Sutherland Ave.  The minister was Rev. E. G. Axene. 

1960 Fire Insurance Map

In 1984 the North Shore Christian Centre purchased the property and The Evangelical Free Church building was used as its sanctuary.  Work bees of volunteers from the congregation then added the higher section of the building pictured on the north side of the building.  This area in now includes the church office,  and the hall to the sanctuary.   The Prayer Room is the old sanctuary that was the original Evangelical Free Church.  

                                   Prayer Room of North Shore Christian Centre
                                 Original Sanctuary of Evangelical Free Church

"The Evangelical Free Church of Canada (EFCC) is an association of autonomous and interdependent evangelical Christian congregations in Canada." (Link 2.)

Note: For more about the church at 1400 Sutherland Avenue
                 see Blog Post at 12/4/11.
Photos: Taken in 2011 by SW.
                 Top photo in Y2K Project on file at the North Vancouver Archives.
Link 2:


God, be with the persecuted Christians through out the world. Amen

Evangelical Free Church
1400 Sutherland Ave.
North Vancouver, B.C.

City Directory-1942-E. 13th and 14th intersection
                                          Bush here
                               1945-no listing on  1400 Sutherland Ave.
                                          no listing of any Axene
                               1949-1416 Sutherland Ave.
                                          Rev. Emil G. Axene (Rosa O.)-es New House
                                                          pastor NV Evangelical Free Church
                                                          at 1416 Sutherland Ave.
                              1950-(same as 1949)
                              1951-Rev. E. Axene-es New House
                              1952-es Evangelical Free Church
                                         1416 Rev. E. G. Axene-es New House
                              1954-es Evangelical Free Church
                                         1416 Rev. E. G. Axene
                              1958-1400 block Sutherland Ave.
                                        es Evangelical Free Church
                                         Rev. C. W. McGee pastor
                              1972-Evangelical Free Church
                                         Rev. Chas Sinclair pastor
                              1982-Evangelical Free Church
                                          Rev. G. Kayser pastor
Building Permit Book-no entry

1960 Fire Insurance Map

Research at the North Vancouver Archives by Suzanne Wilson-2011

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Main Terminal, Mezzanine
Meditation Room
Meditation Room
Sea-Tac Airport
Tacoma, Washington

Sea-Tac International Airport "...was constructed by the Port of Seattle in 1944 to serve civilians of the region, after the U.S. military took control of Boeing Field for use in World War II. The Port received $1 million from the Civil Aeronautics Administration to build the airport, and $100,000 from the City of Tacoma." (Link 3.)  This airport included a chapel.

1944 Sea-Tac Airport 
(Google Images)

Over the years the original 1944 building has deteriorated.  Much of it is condemned and not available to the public.  This is true of the chapel.  There have been numerous additions to the airport so that now the original building is mainly engulfed in new airport facilities and snail shell like parking pavilions. Since the chapel is no longer available for use a new meditation room has been built on the Mezzanine Floor in the new Main Terminal. (See top photo.)  
Sign on Mezzanine Floor of Main Terminal

A single Meditation Room sign hangs in front of it.  On the wall to the left of the sign is a plain door that leads to the old 1944 airport chapel that is no longer in use.  The Meditation Room itself sits like an island in a widening of the hall between this door and the Lost and Found.  Its floor to ceiling glass front reveals a panel of hues of red, yellow, pink, purple, and white decorative circles, "Rondo Capriccioso" by Jennifer Lew and Richard Proctor, dedicated August 1, 1973.  

Front Wall Mural of Meditation Room

Past this paneled wall is a room fronted by a lighted photo of mountains, sky, and water, "Lake Wenatchee" by Johsel Namkung, January 1986. (Link 4.)

Interior of Meditation Room

Narrow floor to ceiling windows frame the front and sides of the room.  These six windows are covered with screens: "Weaving" by Gloria E. Crouse, dedicated August 1, 1973.  Chairs are provided for those who come to worship or meditate. 

Donated Macrame Window Screen

On the left front wall is a door to the chaplain's office.  Numerous volunteer chaplains under the leadership of Executive chaplain, John K. Oas are available for worship services, support, and prayer as well as offering a speakers bureau.  They assist not only travelers, but also the staff of the airport.

From the Seattle Times Archives, 1992.

"At Sea-Tac, A Journey Of The Spirit, Too -- Chaplain Tends To Vast Airport's Travelers, Workers

John Oas is no fly-by-night chaplain.
"For 18 years, Chaplain John, as he calls himself, has been a mainstay at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. He's the director of Sea-Tac Ministries, a nonprofit corporation that assists airport workers and travelers.
"He was 26 when he arrived in 1974 from Westwood Christian Assembly Church in White Center, the youngest airport chaplain in the world, according to an international chaplain's association to which he belongs.
"In an age of airport expansion and record-setting passenger levels, Oas refers to himself and his associate chaplains as "industrial chaplains," and with good reason. Almost 20,000 people work in Sea-Tac airport businesses - an average of 6,000 employees at any one time in 24 hours. There will be about 18 million airport passengers this year.
"Airline workers may be upset because their jobs are in jeopardy; travelers may be seething because departure times were changed at the last minute or because of complications with a bargain flight to a tropical paradise. On top of that, perhaps no other public facility in the greater Seattle area is as busy this time of the year.
""Suddenly the airport's not friendly," Oas says.
"Each Sunday morning, Oas, an ordained minister, leads a Protestant service in the Meditation Room on the second floor of the terminal. It's a sparsely furnished space with 36 padded chairs facing a podium. Covering the wall behind the podium is a black-and-white photo of waves pounding a deserted beach. Off to one side, there's a ready supply of Old and New Testament Bibles.
"Typically, half a dozen people show up, plus an organist, although tour groups can boost attendance to 25 or so. The most was about 45 at the inaugural service. Occasionally it's just one person.
"Having finished with his service on a Sunday, Oas relaxes in one of the chairs. He tells two women who enter that there's nobody available to conduct the Catholic service. The Catholic chaplain resigned in October.
"We provide ministry to everyone and anything," says Oas, who wears a chain with a gold cross around his neck and a Port of Seattle identification badge with his picture. "I don't have a church - this is my parish. My parish is everything from the traditional to the nontraditional."
"Oas said he works mostly with airport employees, while Sea-Tac Ministries volunteers assist travelers.
"He believes his task is to bring faith to a segment of the population that, because of their jobs and unusual work schedules, doesn't fit into a Sunday come-to-meeting setting.
"Oas, also a chaplain for both the Seattle and Port of Seattle police departments, has helped provide safe havens for women fleeing abusive husbands, assisted stranded passengers, comforted people stricken by grief, counseled one on one and headed study groups on chemical dependency and family issues.
"You're brought in maybe when a secretary starts crying at her desk - maybe her teenager has run away," says Oas, who also performs baptisms and up to 40 marriages a year - a few of them at the airport, including one last fall of an Alaska Airlines employee.
"But there are limits even for an organization like Sea-Tac Ministries, which relies on individual contributions and donations from churches and Christian organizations for its existence. It's not possible to meet every request for help.
"Someone asks us for food or lodging on a weekly basis and they supposedly have nothing," Oas says. "We have to discern very carefully who we can help."
"He believes the long-term goal of Sea-Tac Ministries is to serve not only the airport but also the greater SeaTac area, including the nearby Pacific Highway South hotel-motel strip and Southcenter Mall.
"The organization has a board of directors headed by Tim Kimsey, deputy chief of the Port of Seattle police, and also is involved in emergency planning at the airport." (Link 1.)
"About 70 volunteers who have passed background checks and take mandatory training every six months are on a list to assist with survivors and relatives in case of a crash at the airport.
"Like other volunteers at Sea-Tac Ministries, Howard Johnson, a retired Boeing engineer, wears gray slacks and a blue blazer. His chaplaincy insignia, a triangle enclosing a golden circle and a white cross, covers the pocket of his jacket.
"One incident stands out among all others for Johnson, who works four-hour shifts at the airport on Tuesday and Friday and is on call other times.
"During the Christmas holidays several years ago, Johnson was called to an airport bar to try and reason with a medical-equipment salesman from the East Coast. Cocktail waitresses were concerned because of the man's heavy drinking.
"At first, the man told Johnson he didn't need him. But then he confided to Johnson that he had received a call from home saying that his daughter was critically ill from an unknown cause.
"He was afraid to go home to face it," Johnson recalls, "because there had been two deaths and two near-deaths in his family that year, and he had had a heart attack five months earlier."
"Finally, after talking further with Johnson, the man decided he should fly home. Johnson helped him buy his ticket and make other arrangements.
" "I know God sent you to me," the man said. Johnson never heard from him again.
" "We are available for spiritual issues - we also want to be their friends," said Oas, whose wife Kathleen also is a volunteer. "If people want to talk to somebody we want to talk to them . . . we want to be somebody they can trust." " (Link 1.)
Thank you: To Ilene A. McCune, Associate Chaplain for information about the
                 Airport Chapel and Meditation Room, 2013.
Photos: Taken in 2013 by SW.
Link 1:
Link 2:
Link 3:
Link 4:

(Note: In the fall of 2016 I was at SEATAC Airport and noticed that the chapel 
              was no longer there.  I asked an employee about it.  She said it hadn't 
              been there for about a year because of remodeling of the airport.  But
              she said she thought it would be relocated when the remodeling was 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

                                                                                   February 3, 2013

185 East Keith Road-2013

North Shore Bethel Christian 
             Mennonite Brethren Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

"North Shore Bethel Christian Mennonite Brethren (MB) Church held its first meeting in Sutherland Bible Chapel on 19th Street in North Vancouver in September 1997 as an expansion from Bethel Chinese Christian MB Church in Vancouver.

630 East 19th Street
Sutherland Bible Chapel

"The church began with 20 members from the Vancouver church, with Alan Choi serving as pastor. The church officially organized in January 1999 and joined the British Columbia Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches in May the same year (the 1998 BC MB Conference report stated that the congregation had joined the conference in 1998, but that must have been an error). By the end of 2001 it had about 70 people attending the Chinese worship service, 20 attending the English worship service, and another 20 attending children’s worship.
"In February 2001, the church moved its meeting place to Capilano United Church on Philip Avenue with both Chinese and English worship services.

2260 Philip Avenue
Capilano United Church
"On 4 January 2008 the congregation purchased the 83 year-old First Church of Christ, Scientist building on East Keith Road, and held their first service there on 9 March 2008. (Link 1.)


North Side of Sanctuary-2013
The sanctuary is  on the upper floor with large simple rectangular paned windows.  The chancel is at the east end with a single lecture in the center. The cross is on the front wall to the north of the chancel.  The ceiling is outlined in large squares. 
Sanctuary Ceiling-2013

The pews are set at an angle to the center aisle.  Glass panels are set in the upper sections of the double doors leading to the entrance narthex.  Offices have been added to the downstairs fellowship hall where the kitchen has been maintained.
"The North American Mennonite Brethren (MB) church is changing, developing into a new community and beginning a shift in composition that makes it look much different than it did 148 years ago when it first began. 

"Founded in southern Russia in 1860, the MB church comprised almost entirely German-speaking Mennonites from South Russia (the Ukraine)—known as Russian Mennonites—who, 60 years earlier, had emigrated from the Vistula Delta (modern-day Poland). Some of the first changes in composition occurred shortly after the church was formed. Lutherans and Baptists began to join the church around the time of the first North American immigration in the 1870s...

"The following two migrations of Mennonites from Russia to North America in the 1920s and 1940s did little to change the composition of the MB church... For political reasons, the language of worship gradually moved from German to English.

"A significant influence occurred with the post-Vietnam War influx of refugees from Southeast Asia, which turned the MB church’s face of refugee assistance from post-Second World War German-speaking Mennonites toward these newcomers...

"Today, the MB church in Canada worships in around 20 different languages. Nineteen Chinese congregations, mostly in B.C., are rapidly expanding and worship in either Mandarin or Cantonese...

"We view the world through the eyes of Jesus, who came to unite us to God through him. Our declaration as MB Christians is that we are a new people in a new relationship with each other and a common mission to build a new community under the lordship of Christ to which all are freely invited." (Link 2.) 

Note: For more about the 83 year old First Church of Christ Scientist building
see Blog Post for January 27, 2013.
Thank you: To members of the congregation for sharing information
about the church.
Photos: Year 2000 photo from project Your House/Our Home by SW. Other photos taken in 2013 by SW.
Link 1:
Link 2: