VICTORIA – Four years after a recommendation that it be closed, a Vancouver Island church was assessed by the Diocese of British Columbia as healthy, thanks to staunch revitalization efforts by its members, say the churchwardens and rector.
Some years ago, a diocesan review team recommended that St. Michael and All Angels in Chemainus, B.C., be disestablished. The church had been suffering from dissension among its members, which had led to many leaving, and financial problems. But the parish developed a five-year plan for growth, says churchwarden Hilary Findlay, and within two years, the diocese’s assessment had changed to “in transition.” After two more years, it was designated “healthy.”
The church, she says, took a number of steps to increase its presence in the community, including becoming a tourist destination by opening it up for public viewing, hosting an annual parade of veterans and creating a local classical music society. Over the past three years, the church has also been pursuing the development of attainable housing on its property, says its rector, the Rev. Michael Wimmer.
The Diocesan Post