The 1863 Lake Map. Lot 3. Source: Note Centerline Road is marked "Proposed Road"

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Alma

      The construction of Holy Trinity Anglican Church started in the summer of 1888.  The church was consecrated on October 20, 1890.  The church is located on the Western Road ( Rte. 2 Hwy. ) in Alma, at the top of the hill, south, above the Currie farmstead.
     Richard Jeffery, son of Stephen E. Jeffery, use to tell the following story which appeared in the book, The Jeffery Family of the Isle of Wight and Prince Edward Island, by Betty M. Jeffery and Carter W. Jeffery, 1998.  "He would also relate the story of at the age of 12 coming upon workmen building Holy Trinity Anglican Church; asking if  he could help, he was given a tape measure to hold."
     The first Warden of Holy Trinity was Stephen E. Jeffery, the second Warden was William Smith.
     The following document was found at the Anglican Archives in Halifax.  The family of John Currie donated the land to build the church on.
Rector's Report - Holy Trinity, Alma Sep 14, 1891
      Present: the Rector Rev. I.M. Forbes, Chapel Warden Stephen Jeffery, and parishioner Joseph Bearisto
      The church building is new having been completed and consecrated last year (Oct 20, 1890).  It is still unfinished inside lacking a coat of oil and varnish for the wooden ceiling and the seats.  It is in other respects complete and is a substantial commodious, well proportioned and handsome church.
      Inventory. There is a good amalgum in the bell- a Bible for the lectern and a prayer book for the reading desk.  As yet the ch. does not possess a surplice, or font, or altar vessels, or altar books or altar linen.  The people are few and not very well off.  They have done nobly in the past and doubtless will endeavour to acquire one after the other as soon as possible, as they are recommended to do, the above necessary articles.
      Land.  Total area one and one half acre. A good board fence encloses one half acre for the church, and two sides of the balance (the third being a snake fence).  The latter portion is used for a burial ground.  This was consecrated for the purpose as far as the snake fence -  commences – by the Bishop last year.
      Finances.  Steps are being taken to contribute to the Rector’s stipend.  There is no debt upon the church or land.  The people are much to be congratulated upon the success of their efforts, which should encourage to continue till the necessary articles are all acquired.
Rector’s Report - Holy Trinity, Alma July 8, 1893
Present Wm. Smith and Stephen Jeffery and the Rector
          The surplice is old and much worn but has been neatly repaired and is clean and good for some time yet.  The church fabric is kept clean and looks bright and pretty.  The woodwork and ceiling will need a coat of oil at some time but they are at present as clean and unsoiled as the day they were put in.  The churchyard has been well fenced in since my last visit with a substantial board fence. 
          This portion of the Parish now contributes to the Rector’s stipend and so far the people have fulfilled their promises there being no arrears.  Money is now in hand to finish the interior of the church partly with paint and partly with oil and varnish.  The service books are in perfect order.  Much has been done of what might be called pioneer work since my visit.  It is to be hoped the people, few as they are, will be encouraged by what has been done to press on, and not be content until the building is put into a perfect condition by a coat whitewash on the exterior of the walls, a coat of paint on the stone foundations, a font, altar vessels, linen, and book, and an organ.  It cannot be done all at once but little by little and one thing at a time might be accomplished if all are willing workers in God’s vineyard.  The services are well attended, and much appreciated. 
          On the whole rector and parishioners are to be congratulated.  I trust they may feel encouraged.  May God grant them many blessing.  There is no debt of any sort.
S. Weston-Jones 
      Below is the earliest known photograph of the church in the background of this Sunday School Class - likely from the early 1900's.
      Below:  Eva Jeffery, organist and treasurer, at the church - c. 1940s.
      Below:  The old, weather door.  Replaced in 1997.
      Below: a West Prince Graphic article about the Jeffery's and their family connection to Holy Trinity over the years, September 1, 2004.
     Below:  Holy Trinity today.  This photo was taken in the fall of 2007 following a summer when many items were taken care of around the church including the painting of the church.  There were new trees planted and old ones cut down.  That fall the Parishioners were presented with two prizes from the PEI Rural Beautification Society for the improvements to the church and cemetery .
      Below:  Holy Trinity Interior.  Note the history board to the left of altar - compiled by the Alberton Museum to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Anglican Parish of Alberton-O'Leary.
     Below:  photo taken looking up into the steeple of the church.  Note the bell to the far left bottom.  Also note the square post in the middle of the Church.  It is said that when building a steeple a long tall pole was stood up and the spire was built around it, then it was cut off - evident here.
     Below:  The church is used seasonally during summer months.  Here the church at Christmas 2009.

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