St. Stephen’s Anglican Church’s centennial weekend has been five years in the making.
All the hard work will culminate with several events held from Oct. 18 to 20 as part of the East Kildonan church’s 100th anniversary events.
On Fri., Oct. 18th, the church, located at 220 Helmsdale Ave., will host an open house and celebration evening from 7 to 10 p.m., with the formal ceremony at 7:30 p.m. The evening will include historical displays created by a group of eight parishioners who have scoured the church’s archives to put together displays ranging from sports clubs to church life to the church’s involvement in the former Washington Avenue Mission.
As well, a book of 15 parishioners’ memories, collected by centennial committee chair Tracy Peacock, will be given out to all in attendance.
"People can come tour the church, see how it’s changed if they haven’t been here for awhile," Peacock said.
There will be a free family fun day on Sat., Oct. 19 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. with magician Ryan Price, Winnipeg Goldeyes mascot Goldie, face painting, and a hot dog lunch. In the evening, there will be a catered dinner and dance beginning at 5 p.m. at North Kildonan Community Centre (1144 Kingsford Pl.). Tickets are $40 for adults and $25 for children aged 12 and under.
On Sun. Oct. 20, the 100th anniversary worship service will be held at 10 a.m. The service will celebrate the church’s patron saint, who spread a message Rev. Diane Guilford believes will be of help to those in attendance, including visitors from as far away as Calgary. Two longtime parishioners will connect the saint’s story to how the church has worked to live up to his example.
"(St. Stephen) was someone who was known for outreach," said Guilford, who has served the church since 2004. "A big part of what Stephen did was creating community in the first Christian church."
As well, the church will look to its future, as parishioner and second-year Asper School of Business student Diana Schreibmaier will speak about the role her faith has played in her life.
"I think she’ll give us lots of hope," Guilford said. "Anglicans are very, very quiet about their belief. To say ‘I believe in Jesus Christ’ would not cross their lips, but through their actions, that’s who they are.
"This young woman is of a different age and is more able to clearly articulate, and is more comfortable, talking about what it has meant to her to have her faith."
The church has also held several other events to mark the centennial, including a gala dinner, spaghetti dinner, and a golf tournament.