Sunday, December 29, 2013

Nativity Scene-Highlands United Church, North Vancouver, B.C.
(See Blog Post 12/22/13.)

Churches On Sundays
Year 2013 


B. C.-Britannia Beach-Beach Church-November 3, 2013.

B. C.-Cloverdale-Cloverdale United Church-17553 58th Ave.-5/12/13.

B. C.-Courtenay-St. John The Divine Anglican Church-9/29/13.

B. C.-Horseshoe Bay-St. Monica's Anglican Church-6404 Wellington Ave.-

B. C.-North Vancouver City-Posthumous Churches of the City of North  
B. C.-North Vancouver-Posthumous-Evangelical Free Church-
           1400 Sutherland Ave.-2/17/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Poshumous-First Church of Christ Scientist-
           185 East Keith Road-1/27/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Posthumous-Foursquare Gospel Lighthouse-1/20/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Posthumous-Methodist Church/ 1911-1914-10/6/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Posthumous-North Lonsdale Presbyterian/St. 
           Stephen's Presbyterian/St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian 
           Church-2641 Chesterfield Avenue-6/16/13.

B. C.-North Vancouver-Capilano United Church-226- Phillip Ave.-2/24/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Highlands United Church-3255 Edgemont 
B. C.-North Vancouver-Lion's Gate Hospital Chapel-231 East 15th St.-
B. C.-North Vancouver-North Shore Alliance Church-201 E 23rd St.-12/8/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-North Shore Bethel Christian Brethren Church-
           185 East Keith Road-1/3/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-St. Andrew's and St. Stephen's Presbyterian Church-
           2641 Chesterfield Ave.-1/3/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Saint Thomas Aquinas Chapel-541 West Keith Road-
B. C.-North Vancouver-Salvation Army-105 West 12th St.-3/24/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-Sisters of the Child Jesus-Convent Chapel-
           524 West 6th Street-6/2/13.
B. C.-North Vancouver-The Bridge (Delbrook Baptist) Church-515 West
           Windsor Road-3/17/13.

B. C.-Richmond-Airport Chapel, Vancouver International Airport-
           3211 Grand McConachie Way-4/14/13.

B. C.-Surrey-Hazelmere United Church-1614 184th St.-5/5/13.

B. C.-Tofino-St. Columba Church-110 Second St.-1/6/13.

B. C.-Union Bay-Union Bay United Community Church5500 Old Island 
                        Highway/Highway 19A, 9/22/13.

B. C.-Vancouver-Mount St. Joseph Hospital Chapel-3080 Prince Edward
B. C.-Vancouver-Vancouver Buddhist Temple-220 Jackson Ave.-4/28/13.

Costa Rico

Costa Rico-Puntarenas-Catedral De Puntarenas-11-17-13.


Guatamela-Antigua-Inglesia El Calvario Church-12/15/13.


Korea-Seoul, Young Nak Presbyterian Church-1/13/13.


Mexico-Cabo San Lucas-Inglesia San Lucas-11/24/13.
Mexico-Puerto Vallarata-Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe-12/1/13.


Panama-Canal Cruise/San Diego, California to Fort Lauderdale, Florida-
                   Celebrity Millenium Cruise Ship/Sunday Worship-10/27/13.
Panama-Portabelo, Iglesia San Felipe Church-11/10/13.


Tunisia-Tunis/Carthage-Cathedral of St. Louis-9/8/13.

United States

California-Alameda-USS Hornet Aircraft Carrier-Chapel-9/15/22.
California-Downey-Downey Memorial Christian Church-8441 East Florence
California-Downey-First Baptist Church-8348 3rd Street-7/21/13.
California-Downey-First Christian Church-10909 New Street-7/7/13.
California-Downey, St George Greek Orthodox Church-8/11/13.
California-Huntington Park-St. Matthias Catholic Church-3095
             East Florence-6/30/13.
California-Whittier, First Christian Church-8/18/13.
California-Whittier, Whittier Church of Christ-8/25/13.
California-Zamora-St. Agnes Catholic Church-SE corner of Main St.
             and 2nd Street-7/28/13.

Nevada-Las Vegas-Little Chapel of the Flowers-10/13/13.

Texas-Houston-George Bush Intercontinental Airport/Interfaith Chapel-

Washington-Blaine-Christ Episcopal Church-382 Boblett St.-4/7/13.
Washington-Blaine-St. Anne's Catholic Church-604 H Street-5/19/13.
Washington-Blaine-United Church of Christ-885 4th Street-5/26/13.
Washington-Concrete-Mount Baker Presbyterian Church, 9/1/13.
Washington-Everett-Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church-
            2617 Cedar Street-2/21/13.
Washington-Tacoma-Meditation Room, SEATAC Airport-2/10/13.



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

Sunday, December 22, 2013

                                                                                                                           December 22, 2013

3255 Edgemont Boulevard

Highlands United Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

"Highlands United Church activity began in July 1946, but it was not constituted a Pastoral Charge by the Vancouver Presbytery until September 26, 1950. At that time, the church was called Capilano Highlands United Church; (built on Hillcrest)  the name was changed to Highlands United Church in February of 1951." (Link 1.) 

The present Highlands United Church on Edgemont Boulevard was designed by the architect R. William Wilding and originally consisted of a narthex, sanctuary, and lower hall used for the Sunday School and social activities.  "A landmark in Edgemont Village, this church expresses its verticality through the use of a tall structural A-frame roof framed with laminated beams.  The church is reached by a bridge at the upper level.  The exterior is clad with vertical rough red cedar boards; the roof was originally clad with cedar shingles to evoke the surrounding woods and mountain views. The interior of the nave features exposed laminated beams, and is dramatically lit through the use of coloured glass, mostly amber, in small slit windows. A large skylight illuminates the altar area.  It opened in November 1958. Cost of the building was $150,000. " (Link 3.) 

The sanctuary seats about 350 members of the congregation.  The balcony seats an additional 100.

Sanctuary Balcony with Colored Glass
In 1961 1000 children were attending Sunday School and more rooms were needed.  In 1963 and 1964  an Christian Education Centre was added.  It consists of a two floor wing of classrooms and a gym with classrooms above. This formed a central courtyard. (See photo below.)

Courtyard formed by 1963-64 addition.

In the 1990's the District of North Vancouver gave Highlands United Church, Heritage status.

In 2006 the first phase of an upgrade to the church was started.  Last year the Sanctuary Chancel was renovated.  The slat reredo was replaced with a block format wall featuring a tall LED cross.  The color of the LED can be changed according to the religious season of the year.  The present blue is the color of Advent.  Banners to the left of the cross can also be changed with the season. The present Madonna and Child with blue accents is for Advent and Christmas.

2013 Reredo with LED cross and banners

Christmas Banners to the left of the LED Cross

Today's congregation numbers around 400 to 500.  The Sunday worshipers number around 300 to 400.  They enter the Edgemont Avenue  bridge leading to the stained glass doors to the Narthex and Sanctuary.

Edgemont Entrance to Narthex and Sanctuary

Stained Glass Doors to Narthex and Sanctuary

Nativity Exhibit and Craft Fair

In November 2013 Highlands United Church held their fifth annual Nativity Exhibit and Craft Fair.  An orange and green nativity scene, of the wise men following the Star of Bethlehem to the Christ Child, was mounted on the roof of the church.

Wise Men, Star, and Manger Scene

Over 200  nativity scenes were displayed in the Lower Hall. These were shared by members of the congregation.  They were from all over the world. 

From Hope B.C. Canada

From Northern Canada

From Puerta Vallarta, Mexico


(For more about the history of Highlands United Church see 
  Blog Post 1/26/14.)

Thank you: To congregation member, Alan,  for information on the history of 
                 the church and the renovation plans.
Photos: Taken in November 2013 by SW.
Link 1:;rad
Link 2:
Link 3:


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

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Iglesia El Calvario Church

Iglesia El Calvario Church
Antigua, Guatamala

"Antigua Guatemala is a city in thecentral highlands of Guatemala famous for its well-preserved SpanishBaroque influenced architecture as well as a number of spectacular ruins of colonial churches. It has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site." (Link 2.)

"Iglesia El Calvario (Calvary Church) is a Church that is characterized by its beautiful facade, extensive mall area, and because on its premises is an "Esquisuchil" tree planted by Hermano Pedro de Betancur in 1626. Esquisuchil trees (bourreria huanita) are very old and very few. Certainly an attraction that will appeal to visitors. The Church is located at the end of "El Calvario" street, which is surrounded by several small shrines along it.
1688 Stone Cross
"Construction of El Calvario church began on November 19, 1618, when a cross was built there. Construction work completed in 1655 and in 1657 the last of the great paintings of Antonio Montufar was placed in it, as well as others made by Thomas Merlo. In 1618 a wooden cross was placed there, which represented the beginning of its construction. It was later replaced in 1688 by a stone, opposite the facade." (Link 1.)
Photo: Taken in September 2013 by SW.
Link 1:
Link 2:


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

Sunday, December 8, 2013

                                                                     December 8, 2013

201 East 23rd Street (2000)

North Shore Alliance Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

"Our church began in Horseshoe Bay, a little over sixty years ago. And while a lot has changed in sixty years (our location, our music, our ministries), the foundation remains the same. Connie and Marjorie Pope had a passion for Jesus and a burden on their hearts for the people who lived around them.  Taking note that there was no evangelical church in the area, these two sisters along with their friend, Karen Chalmers, began to develop a vision that remains central to us today--moving out into the neighbourhood with the message that God loves people.

"Over the years, NSAC grew to the place where it needed a new, more permanent home. In 1988, the congregation moved into our current building at 201 East 23rd street. But God had more in mind than simply a new building for our church community; He had in mind multiple churches across the North Shore. In 2002, again in 2005, and once more in 2006, three new churches were launched: Cove Community Church in Deep Cove, The River Church in Squamish, and Simple Churches ( a network of house churches across Vancouver and North Vancouver).

"Today, North Shore Alliance is a church that meets in two gatherings on Sundays, and in over 30 small groups weekly around the city. North Shore Alliance is also a part of a larger network of churches called the Christian Missionary Alliance. (Link 1.)

Alliance Church, facing corner of St. Georges and East 23rd Street

This distinctive modern church (built 1988) faces the North Shore mountains and is on the corner of St. Georges Avenue and East 23rd Street in the City of North Vancouver.  The cross is a predominant feature.  The open steeple (pictured above) of two molded cement spires reaching to the heavens protects a large wooden cross (Photo below). The cross is made up of several different kinds of wood.  Crosses are also the centerpieces of the windows on either side of the open steeple.

Wooden Cross Inside Open Steeple (2013)
A large wooden cross also is mounted at the side of the chancel in the sanctuary.  This cross is of cedar.  Both of these crosses were made by  Graham Schulz.  Additional seating for worship services is in the sanctuary balcony.

The stained glass window to the right of the chancel and behind the baptismal pool was placed there in 1987.  It symbolizes the Alliance Church. 

"The term "fourfold gospel" describes the historic emphasis of the C&MA on the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus is our Saviour, our Sanctifier, our Healer and our Coming King. These aspects of the ministry of Jesus are represented in the official C&MA logo or symbol. Each element of the logo visualizes one aspect." (Link 3.)

C&MA Logo Symbol Description
Symbols seen in the stained glass window below. (Link 3.)

Stained Glass Window
(to the right of the sanctuary chancel)

"The Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) is an evangelical Protestant denomination within Christianity.
"Founded by Rev. Albert Benjamin Simpson in 1887, the Christian & Missionary Alliance did not start off as a denomination, but rather began as two distinct parachurch organizations: The Christian Alliance which focused on the pursuit and promotion of the Higher Christian life and The Evangelical Missionary Alliance, which focused on mobilizing "consecrated" Christians in the work of foreign missionary efforts. These two groups amalgamated in 1897 to form The Christian and Missionary Alliance. It was only much later during the mid-20th century that an official denomination was formed
"In Canada, there are 440 churches,..." (Link 2.)

Thank you: To Dave Sattler, Outreach Pastor, for information about the church
                 building during my visit in 2015.
Photos: Top photo taken as part of the Year 2000 Photography Project, Our
                 House/Your Home by SW and on file at the North Vancouver 
                 Archives. Additional photos taken in 2013 by SW.  Interior photos
                 taken in 2015 by SW.
Link 1:
Link 2:
Link 3:


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

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Our Lady of Guadalupe
Puerto Vallarata, Mexic0

"It dominates Puerto Vallarta's skyline in countless postcards, serving as the city’s most recognizable and endearing landmark all over the world. Year after year, it welcomes thousands of Catholics, particularly during an involved 12-day festival known as the Feast of Guadalupe every December. For many, it is a must-visit attraction in our city. For the privileged few who run the place on a day-to-day basis, the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe is undoubtedly our city's most precious monument, one that we should all endeavor to preserve.

"To this date, the Church of Our Lady of Guadalupe, or Guadalupe Church, has been under the attentive supervision of eight parish priests. Father Salazar (2003 - present) came from Tepic's Immaculate Conception Parish, where he served for two and a half years. Along with him, there are four other priests at Guadalupe Church. On any given day, a number of services are offered, including an English service Saturdays at 5 pm, and a bilingual service on Sundays, 10 am. Jacques Landre, an English- and French-speaking Canadian priest has been spending his holiday in Puerto Vallarta for several years, performing Sunday mass.

Chancel Sculpture

"...The church bells are rung by the sextants 30 and 15 minutes prior to each service. During the peregrinaciones, or pilgrimages, for the 12-day Feast of Guadalupe, thousands of faithful from all over Puerto Vallarta and beyond walk to the church to pay tribute to the virgin as the bells joyfully welcome them. 
"When construction of the foundations of an early church began in Puerto Vallarta in 1903, there was already a small chapel dedicated to the Virgin of Guadalupe at the same location.... Existing foundations were strengthened, and by 1917 they were finished, along with the main pillars and walls. Construction continued and, in the following year, the work-in-progress was promoted from a chapel to a parish by the Mexican clergy, with new walls and scaffolding surrounding the original and still-functioning chapel.
"Construction continued at a brisk pace during the early 1920s, with the blessing of "La Eucaristía," the main church bell, but halted abruptly in 1926 when Mexico's struggle between church and state escalated into an armed conflict known as the Cristero War. On June 27 of that year, church bells rang in Mexico for the first time in almost three years.
"Once the conflict diminished to a safe level, construction of the church was resumed with the beginning of the dome in 1930. It wasn't until the 1940s, however, that the entire building was finished, with the exception of the two towers. The chancel was used for the first time, and a Hammond organ installed on December 12, 1951,... it wasn't finished until 1952.

Poster on Exterior Church Wall
"The original church crown was installed in 1963. It was made of concrete, and is said to be a replica of a crown worn by Carlota, mistress of the Emperor Maximilian in the 1860s. Finally, and under padre Ramírez's supervision, the façade and lateral towers were completed in 1987, resulting, for the most part, in the church as we know it today.
" The main building is considered to be neoclassic, while the crown reminds us of baroque Austrian temples. The lateral towers, due to their late completion, have an elegant, Renaissance feel.
"...early foundations along with the placement of the column groupings indicate that the original design may have intended to pay tribute to the original Basilica de Guadalupe, located in Mexico City's Zocalo. 
"The image of Our Lady of Guadalupe venerated at the church is an oil replica painted by Guadalajara artist Ignacio Ramirez in 1945. 

"Due to inevitable damage caused by erosion and weather changes, the original crown installed in 1963 had to be restored in 1981. But on October 9, 1995, it was completely destroyed by a 7.5 Richter-scale earthquake. At the time, members of the public and private sectors recognized the importance of the crown as a universal symbol for our destination and agreed to commission a temporary replacement made of fiberglass. Regretfully, the material used to build it was not strong enough to withstand its own weight, so the crown's sections have deformed, altering its original profile and volume.
".. the budget required to restore the crown to its glory is $800,000 USD." (Link 1.)
Photos: Taken in September 2013 by SW.
Link 1:


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