Sunday, October 25, 2015

                                                                                                         October 25, 2015

St. Therese of the Child Jesus Catholic Church
(The Green Church)

St. Therese of the Child Jesus Catholic Church
Skagway, Alaska

"Gold was discovered near Dawson in the Klondike in 1896, and the town of Skagway was founded in 1897 by Captain William Moore. With the influx of miners and prospectors heading for the Klondike, Skagway quickly became the most populated town in Alaska, with a population of 3,117 in 1900.
"The first priest to visit Skagway was Father Paul Bougis SJ, from Douglas, Alaska (near Juneau). He arrived in the fall of 1897 and offered Mass in the homes of Catholic families that fall and the following spring. In August, 1898, Father Philibert Turnell SJ came to Skagway and established a mission. He made temporary arrangements to use the school for Sunday Masses, and his first Mass was offered on September 8, the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Three months later the Catholic community purchased a large empty store, converting it into a church and naming it St. Mark’s. The church was filled to capacity for the first Mass which was offered on Christmas Eve, 1898.

" In March of 1918, Father Edgar Gallant was the first priest to be ordained in Alaska. His first assignment was Skagway, where he was to serve until 1959. Father Gallant’s first goal was to improve St. Mark’s Church. In 1932, with help from the Catholic Extension Society, he built St. Pius X Mission Boarding School for Native children. The school stood on the site of the present Garden City R.V. Park and was staffed by the Sisters of St. Ann of British Columbia. In November of 1946, the school burned to the ground, but was soon rebuilt and operated until 1959.

"After the boarding school closed, Masses were once again offered in the homes of local Catholic families. Priests visited from Juneau, and sisters came to Skagway to visit and offer religious instruction for the children. We were once again a mission parish, but the dedication of the good people of Skagway and the visiting clergy and sisters kept the faith alive and flourishing to this day.
"Our present church—St. Therese of the Child Jesus—was built in 1979 with the help of the Christian Brothers and the good people of Skagway. Much of the funding was provided by the Catholic Extension Society, to which our community is most thankful.

Statue of St. Therese
(In front of church)

"The parish of St. Therese is a member of the Diocese of Juneau, shepherded by Bishop Edward J. Burns who was installed April 2, 2009. The Diocese of Juneau is strung out along 500 miles of islands, inlets and fjords that compose the panhandle of Southeast Alaska. This 53,000 sq. mile area is served by nine priests, many of whom travel regularly by ferry and small plane to bring the Mass and sacraments to the small towns and villages of our diocese." (Link 1.)

The residents of Skagway refer to their five churches not by their denomination, but by the color paint on the exterior. 

                                                        Assembly of God-Red
                                                          Fellowship Lifelink-Gray
                                                          St. Therese Catholic Church-Green

Hence St. Therese Catholic Church is identified as "The Green Church".  A statue of St. Therese in front of the church welcomes church members and visitors.

The entrance/narthex is on the side of the building. Inside  is the sanctuary which opens up to the church hall behind it.  Behind the altar on the front wall of the sanctuary is the dramatic painting of prospectors on foot carrying their supplies up the mountain side to the gold fields. It was painted by Jerry Coon, the brother parishioner Linda Coon. It is titled Golden Stirs/Golden Staircase. Jerry Coon also helped to build the church. (Judy)  A colored statue of St. Therese sits to the left of the painting.


Front Wall of Sanctuary

Statue of St. Therese
(In Sanctuary)

The church hall provides additional pews for seating in the sanctuary, an area for social activities and an altar.  On the side wall of the entrance to the hall is the church piano.  Also on the side wall are brass plaques of the Stations of Cross.

Pews extending into church hall
(Piano on the right)

Station of the Cross

In 1932 a Catholic Boarding School for native children was built in Skagway, St. Pius X Mission Boarding School.  It closed its doors in 1959.  "The Chapel at the school was named in honor of St. Therese.  The altar in our hall is the altar used in the Chapel in the school." (REF.)

Altar from St. Pius X School 
(In church hall.)

Other architectural  features in the church are a colored glass window and
the baptismal font of wood and brass.
Colored Glass Window

Baptismal Font

Thank you: To Judy and her daughter at Mile 0 B&B for information on 
                         the church.
Note: See map of area at Blog Post October 18, 2015. 
Photos: Taken in Sept. 2015 by SW while on a cruise on the Norwegian Sun.
Reference: Church handout on the history of the Church and School.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

                                                                                                               October 18, 2015

St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church

St. Nicolas Russian Orthodox Church
Juneau, Alaska

Inside Passage Cruise
Skagway, Juneau, Ketchican (north to south)
(Link 2.)

"The Inside Passage is a coastal route for oceangoing vessels along a network of passages which weave through the islands on the Pacific coast of North America. The route extends from southeastern Alaska, in the United States, through westernBritish Columbia, in Canada, to northwestern Washington state, in the United States. Ships using the route can avoid some of the bad weather in the open ocean and may visit some of the many isolated communities along the route. The Inside Passage is heavily travelled by cruise ships, freighters, tugs with tows, fishing craft and ships of the Alaska Marine Highway,BC Ferries, and Washington State Ferries systems.
The term "Inside Passage" is also often used to refer to the ocean and islands around the passage itself. The Inside Passage is also sometimes referred to as the "Inland Passage" which is in turn a reference to early explorers' quests to locate the Northwest Passage between the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean." (Link 2.)
"The City and Borough of Juneau  is the capital city of Alaska. It is a unified municipality located on the Gastineau Channel in the Alaskan panhandle, and it is the second largest city in the United States by area. Juneau has been the capital of Alaska since 1906, when the government of what was then the District of Alaska was moved from Sitka as dictated by the U.S. Congress in 1900. The municipality unified on July 1, 1970, when the city of Juneau merged with the city of Douglas and the surrounding Greater Juneau Borough to form the current municipality,[2] which is larger by area than both Rhode Islandand Delaware.
"In 2014, the population estimate from the United States Census Bureau was 32,406, making it the second most populous city in Alaska after Anchorage. Juneau's daily population can increase by roughly 6,000 people from visiting cruise ships between the months of May and September.
"The city is named after gold prospector Joe Juneau...
"Juneau is rather unusual among U.S. capitals in that there are no roads connecting the city to the rest of Alaska or to the rest of North America...
(Link 3.)

School, Church, Rectory before 1917
St Nicholas, May 1945
St. Nicolas, 1945
(Link 1.)

The Dome, Dec 2010
                                                                                  The Dome, Dec 2010
                                                                        (Link 1.)
Juneau was the first stop of the Sept. 14-21st cruise ship Norwegian Sun.  And it is  here that sits the  "oldest, continual use Orthodox structure in Southeast Alaska" (Link 1.)  St. Nicolas Russian Orthodox Church.

"Although there were no Russians in Juneau at that time and Alaska had been under United States control since 1867, the Russian Orthodox Church of St Nicholas was established there in 1894... it was the native Tlingit people who were the catalyst for the establishment of our church, " (Link 1.) (because services were in their own language.)
"After word reached Moscow that the work in Juneau had been established, the (Orthodox Missionary) Society sent architectural drawings and two thousand silver rubles to build and equip the church.  Another significant donation of 400 dollars came from Rev. Ivan Il’ich Sergiyev, known better to us as St. John of Kronstadt. The Iconostasis was constructed and provided by Ivan A. Zheverzheev’s Factory and Store of Church Utensils....In October 1893, a fundraising event was sponsored by a local Juneau physician. A total of $400 was raised at a "fancy dress ball" at the Court House where participants sought to win prizes, dance to an orchestra, and eat ice cream.
"Also included in the shipment were articles of interior church furnishings - candle stands, chalice set, censer, banners, a full icon screen and festal icons. Many of these items can still be seen (and some are still in use) at the church today." (Link 1.)
Interior Church Furnishings from Russia

Original Candelabra from Russia
"This building was constructed in 1893-1894 in Juneau with local timber, local labor, and under the supervision of Ellingen and Rudolph, a local contractor....(It was the last of the Orthodox churches made in this shape.-REF.) The (seven bay) iconostasis (icon screen) is the only part of this building that was made in Russia and assembled here.

St. Nicolas
Center Painting on Iconoctasis

Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary
Painting to Left of Center on Iconostasis

St. Methodios
Far Right Painting on Iconostasis

"At the time of the consecration, there was no dome or belfry in place on the building. The characteristic "onion" dome was constructed and placed in 1895. The bell and belfry were constructed and placed in 1905 or 1906.  Inscriptions on the bell indicate that it was cast (or at least sponsored) in St. Petersburg, Russia." (Link 1.)

Painting Above Sanctuary Entrance From Narthex
(Painted by local artist Charles Rohrbacker)
The octagonal shaped church consists basically of two rooms, the sanctuary and the narthex.  The congregation stands in the sanctuary during Sunday worship services.

On the walls of the sanctuary are groupings of liturgical paintings, many of which are enhanced gold leaf backgrounds or details.

Liturgical Painting Groupings On Side Walls of Sanctuary

In the narthex is a glass case of objects used in church services. Plaques describing the churches history line the walls.

19th Century Wedding Crowns
(In Case In Narthex)

A $120,000 restoration project was completed in 1979.  And in recent years parts of the church have again been restored.  "In 1990 the parishioners repainted the church inside and out..." "A $5000 grant...(paid for a) dome restoration in 1992." "The belfry was removed in... 2007, stored on the lawn, restored as part of the narthex restoration,  and replaced... (in) 2012." The roof of the old rectory was replaced in 2013.  Foundation work was done on the church in 2014. (REF.)

In 1974 St. Nicolas Orthodox Church in Juneau, Alaska was elected to the National Register of Historic Places. (REF.)

Thank you: To Patrick and Julia for guiding me around the church and gift
                 shop-in the original rectory next to the church.
Reference : The First Hundred Years 1984-1994 page 12, available at the
                 church gift shop.
Photos: Taken in Sept. 2015 by SW.
Link 1:
Link 2:
Link 3:,_Alaska
Link 4:

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Norwegian Sun 
Cruise Ship Terminal, Vancouver B.C.

Cruise Ship Norwegian Sun-Chapel
Cruise-Vancouver, Alaska Inside Passage, Vancouver

The Norwegian Sun is one of the smaller ships that comes into the Cruise Ship Terminal in Vancouver B.C.  It welcomes 1,936 guests and is only 848 feet long.
The ship cruises to the Panama Canal, South America, the Mexican Riviera, the Pacific Coast and Alaska's Inside Passage.

St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church (Juneau, Alaska) is located in Alaska 
Alaska's Inside Passage
(pan handle area in the south east)
(Link 4:)

It was built in 2001 and refurbished in 2011.  The guests have access to amenities on 12 decks.  One of the rooms on that 12th, top deck/bow, is a small room labeled "Chapel".

Chapel Altar Area

A small plain door off the 12th deck hallway opens to the small lovely chapel bathed in soft light and pale colors.  The oval altar is a gentle oval of pale blond wood with a  large diamond grain.  The front altar cabinet features a white marble top and supports a white urn of flowers.  Urns of flowers flank both sides of the cabinet. A modern painting of the soft colors highlighted in black is centered on the front wall.

Chapel Seating and Interior Window Wall

Window of panels of squares of back lit colored glass framed in blond wood are on both the interior window wall and the two rear French doors leading to the outside deck.  The dozen (approximate) upholstered armed chairs are also of the matching blond wood.

Sunday Missal

The front altar cabinet is a storage area for worship service materials.  Several sets of books are available, in several languages.  They include the Sunday Missal published by The Vatican, Gates of Prayer, and What the Bible Really Teaches.  

The Chapel is open at all times to guests for private meditation.  On request it can be reserved for special services: weddings  and vow renewal services (Link 3.), Friday self led Sabbath Services, and Sunday worship services.

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

Sunday, October 4, 2015

                                                                                                           October 4, 2015

Sutherland Church/St. Timothy's Anglican Church
630 East 19th Street

St. Timothy's Anglican Church
North Vancouver, B.C. Canada

In 2004 one hundred members of St. Martin's Anglican Church (See Blog Post April 6, 2014.) on Windsor Rd. in North Vancouver decided to establish the separate congregation of St. Timothy's Anglican Church. "...originally St. Timothy's was a part of the Anglican Mission (under Rwanda) from June 2004June 2012 ..." (REF 2.)  In 2005 St. Timothy's became  under the auspices of the Anglican Network in Canada.

St. Timothy's Church 
Outdoor Sign

"The Anglican Network in Canada (ANiC) is a Canadian church established in 2005 under the jurisdiction of the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone, a province of the Anglican Communion. It was a founding diocese of the Anglican Church in North America in June 2009. It comprises 72 parishes in eight Canadian provinces and two American states.[2] The Canadian provinces with more parishes are British Columbia, with 26, and Ontario, with 25. Their first Moderator Bishop was Don Harvey, from 2009 to 2014, when he was succeeded by Charlie Masters.

"The stated mission of the Anglican Network in Canada is to "Build Bucolically faithful, Gospel sharing, Anglican Churches". The network desires to be used by God to build new churches and expand existing churches that it believes will be fully Anglican, bucolically faithful, evangelizing and disciplining.[5]
The Anglican Network in Canada, along with the ACNA and the majority of the Anglican Communion, uphold the historic Christian creeds, traditional moral and theological principles pertaining to the Trinity, Christian sexuality, and the authority of the Christian scriptures." (Link 2.)


The congregation of St. Timothy's Anglican Church celebrated their 11th anniversary this June 2015.  They have met at Sutherland Church (See Blog Post January 26, 2014.) for the last three years.  Previous to that they held Sunday worship services in two North Vancouver location.   First at the Food Bank on the corner of  Bewicke Ave. and the Low Level Road, then in the Lynn Valley Recreation Centre on Mountain Highway.


During Sunday worship services a special altar, lectern, communion table, and carrying cross is placed in the chancel.  These were all made by congregation member Gordon Barrett. The woods he used include: maple, oak, and cherry.     The wood grain on the front of the altar features repeated patterns suggesting the cross, Christ with arms raised in blessing, and a halo of radiance.  

Communion Table

The altar is on rollers so that it can easily be moved into the sanctuary for the service.   The back of the altar is open with shelves to accommodate all the altar and communion pieces.

The cloth adorning the altar made by Gordon Barrett is a donation from congregation member, Hazel Blacoe.  The fabric originated in Ireland and was her mother's treasured Irish linen bed sheet.  Hazel brought it from Ireland, never used it, but carried it with her as she moved to and across Canada before settling in North Vancouver.  The needlework was stitched by another congregation member, Nancy (Vondette) Nelson. (REF 3.)

Since the congregation of St. Timothy's does not have to support the upkeep of a building that portion of their giving goes to outreach in the community and mission. "St. Timothy's Church is dedicated to provide 10% of income from regular offerings to outreach projects at local, national and international levels. We strongly believe in the importance of supporting ministries and organizations in the areas of heath care, evangelism, mercy ministries, education, environment, church planting and church resourcing." (Link 1.)


Photos: Taken by SW in January of 2014 and May and June of 2015.
Link 1:
Link 2:
Reference 1: The Bible/New Testament/First Letter of Paul to Timothy and 
                          Second Letter of Paul to Timothy.
Reference 2: e mail from Rev. Ken Bell, Senior Priest at St. Timothy's Anglican
Reference 3: As described by Hazel Blacoe, 2017.