In the early morning hours of November 1, 2001, Lunenburg firefighters responded to what would be their 23rd, and final call on one of the most hectic Halloween nights in the town’s history.
Unlike the other calls that evening, which were to extinguish mostly small, deliberately set spot fires, this one was different.
St. John’s Anglican Church, a hallowed hall of worship in the town for nearly 250 years and one of Canada’s National Historic Sites, was on fire.
By the next afternoon, despite the heroic efforts of the Lunenburg fire department and 13 others who responded to the blaze, the church lay in ruins.
Just over a month later, after the initial shock of the tragedy
had subsided, the congregation
of St. John’s church voted overwhelmingly in favour of restoring their revered house of worship.
In the days that followed, their dedicated efforts to rebuild the church as well as the unwavering support of not only a community, but of an entire country, were nothing short of phenomenal.
At a service of hope and prayer held in the church hall on the evening following the fire, Rev. Irving Letto, then rector at St. John’s told the congregation that, like the Phoenix, St. John’s would rise again from the ashes.
On June 12 at 3 p.m., those prophetic words will finally become reality as Bishop Fred Hiltz presides over the rededication of the restored church, and the resurrection of St. John’s will be complete.