County of Ponoka GenWeb Project - Church Histories pg5
Title for Church Histories pg5
Rimbey Seventh Day Adventist Church Saint Mary's Anglican Church
Rimbey United Church St. Cross Lutheran Church
Russian Church Saint Peter's Lutheran Church
Saint Augustine Roman Catholic Church ---

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Russian Church
About 1937 a number of Russian families decided to build a Greek Orthodox house of worship. Mr. MIHILOFF donated land (NE 24-44-2-5) and provided partial funding for the building of the church. Additional funding was provided by Mr. Fred POLUSHIN. The church building was erected by Mr. KREVOSHEIA, Mr. KUZNETSOFF, Mr. Walter POLUSIN and numerous community members.
During the early 1970's, 3 nuns and an elderly priest lived at the church, headed by Sister Ambrosia.
The church also has a cemetery where many of it's members have been laid to rest over the years.
Based on an excerpt from Tributaries of the Blindman

The Priests Saint Augustine's Roman Catholic Church History
Reverend Father LIZEE When the first Catholic settlers arrived in Ponoka, they were ministered to by the priest from Hobbema Indian Reserve, Reverend Father LIZEE who attended them in their homes. Later, Father DAUPHIN read Ma s at the KENNEDY family home, just outside of the town of Ponoka. In 1902, Reverend Father DUBOIS began holding services at the local hotel owned by LAURENDEAU and MIQUELON. Following this, masses were held in Forrester's Hall, over Pete HORN's blacksmith shop every third Sunday by Reverend Father VANDENDALE. In the next few years, four lots were purchased and a subscription list began for the building of a church. In 1908 a building was erected using lumber donated by John HAGEMANN and $700 which had been collected. A committee made up of Louis FLEMING, Michael BRADY, P. O'DONNELL and Mr. HAGEMANN oversaw the process. July 27, 1909 saw the first Confirmation held by Reverend Father VAN WETTEN in the new Church building. In 1922 Father Graydon HARRISON took over as priest and in the later years of his career in Ponoka designed and drew up the plans for the Church building as it presently exists. The building committee for the 2nd building consisted of V. MALONEY, L.C. MORRISROE, K. ABT, R. GALVIN, G. BRADY and B. FINK.
Reverend Father DUBOIS
Reverend Father VANDENDALE
Reverend Father VanWETTEN
Father Graydon HARRISON
Reverend Father MURPHY
Reverend Father CAMPBELL (2 terms)
Reverend Father McKENZIE
Reverend Father BRYDEEN
Reverend Father BEDNER
Reverend Father NOWAKOWSKI
Based on an excerpt from Ponoka Panorama, 1973

The clergymen Saint Mary's Anglican Church History
Reverend WEBB
Reverend JAMES
Reverend CRAMP
Reverend ADAMS
Reverend McQUEEN
Reverend JAMES
Reverend WADE
Reverend MURPHY
Reverend NAINBY
Reverend ELKIN
Reverend PEAKE
Reverend SMITH
Reverend SHELL
Reverend HOSKING
By dispensation from Bishop Pinkman of Calgary, St. Mary's Anglican Church was created July 7, 1903. Although land was purchased in 1904 on which to construct a church building, services were held in a variety of locations until 1914 when Bishop GREY of the newly formed (1913) Anglican Diocese of Edmonton performed the consecration of the new Church and made St. Mary's the southernmost church in the Diocese. Over the years the Church building has been added onto and renovated to creats its current structure.
St. Mary's sponsored the first Scout and Guide troops in the Ponoka area.
In 1904 the church formed a Womans' Association under the chair of Mrs. Sam LUCAS which became the first W.A. in the Edmonton diocese.
Based on an excerpt from Ponoka Panorama, 1973

St. Peter's Lutheran Church
N.W. 34-42-22-4
Many of the Lutherans who immigrated to Red Deer Lake, did not want to lose hold of their religion and beliefs, so they set about organizing a congregation.
On July 22, 1897 the Northwest Conference of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Canada met in Winnipeg and the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Manitoba was formed. That same year Paster F. Bredlow organized St. Peter's congregation, and it became part of this new Synod.
Andreas Siglet was the lay reader, and held the first services in the homes of parishoners. As the main mode of transportation was horseback and as Paster Bredlow had 8 other settlements to minister to, he was only able to come periodically to serve the new congregation. All services were held in the mother tongue of German.
The Government gave the congregation one of the forty acre plots that were available to the many congregations in the area - on N.W. 34-42-22-4. Early in 1903 the construction of the church was under way, under the direction of the local carpenter, Mr. Nelson DONALDSON. Pastor Runge, commuting from Wetaskiwin, served the congregation, and the first church council was formed by Gottleib HENSCH, Carl RISKE, and Adam SCHEUERMAN. Some of the early purchases were: stove, $6.00; cross and candle holders, $28.85; offering plates (tin) each 30. A Christmas tree and decorations was a must for the first Christmas in the church and cost $4.90. The average offering for a Sunday was about 60. In 1904, from February 1 to June 5 the total offering was $7.95.
Pastor Runge arrived Friday night, and spent Saturday teaching the children to read and write in German, and conducted Confirmation classes at "Saturday School". Prior to this, most of the children were home-schooled.
In 1905, Pastor Bredlow again served the congregation with a salary of $120/year. That year, the first lighting system was set up: two lamps at a cost of $10; a gallon can filled with coal oil worth 70; wire and hooks to hang lamps totalled 40.
By 1906 $932.20 had been collected in the building fund and the congregation consisted of 38 families.
In 1908, the members who had been laid to rest on Falk farm were moved to the St. Peter's Cemetery.
On January 13, 1911, Henry SCHEUERMAN and August SCHULTZ were chosen to oversee the construction of a 24 x 26 foot parsonage, which when it was almost finished on September 11, burned to the ground from causes unknown. This made the parishoners insure the church and buildings for the first time. It also meant that when
Pastor H. Walbaum arrived to lead the congregation, he had to live temporarily with some of the members until the new house was built. As the first resident minister, his salary was $300/year, feed for one horse and a house to live in.
During Pastor A. Schlange service from 1914-18, a barn was built for the Pastor's horse and cow, each family agreed to provide two loads of firewood for heating the church, and a bank account was opened so the Pastor was paid quarterly by cheque. The Easter offering was given to the first local organist, Pauline Schultz.
A 19 voice choir was formed by Augst Resler which added much to the Sunday services held by Pastor Kerstain from 1918 to 1921.
Congregation picnics became an annual event, and even during the hardest times, many pounds of used clothing was sent overseas to those who needed it.
In 1920 the Church became self-supporting, no longer accepting support from the Mission Board of the ULCA.
Between 1921-22, 20 acres of church property was cleared and broken by Mik Rake, who got the first 2 crops and half of the 3rd for doing the work.
The 1930's saw a few more changes. A basement was put under the Church, and the building was enlarged.
The first regular English language services were held by Pastor Wilkie - made necessary by inter-marriage.
Until 1944 the Pastor lived at St. Peter's and travelled to Bashaw to conduct services as well. A parsonage was built in town and the country buildings disposed of.
Between 1949 to 1956 the cemetery was fenced, iron gates were hung and the interior of the Church was decorated.
In 1957 the congregation celebrated its Diamond Jubilee. By then services were entirely in English, electricity and an oil furnace were installed, and a wrought iron sign was put up.
Between 1963 to 1967, an electric organ was purchased, panelling, dorsal curtains, carpeting, altar paraments and altar railing added to the Church's interior attractiveness.
The Pastors
Andreas Siglet
Pastor Kerstain
Pastor Wolfram
Pastor F. Bredlow
Pastor Paul Baehnisch
Pastor Wilkie
Pastor Runge
Pastor Raschke
Pastor Weidenhammer
Pastor F. Bredlow
Pastor Mueller
Pastor Freitag
Pastor Walbaum
Pastor Hanneman
Pastor Sterzer
Pastor H.R. Karstens
Pastor Cyrus
Pastor G. Remus
Pastor A. Schlange
Pastor Winter
Pastor Ken Nelson
Lutheran Synods
1st Choir Director
Ladies Aid ...
Those laid to rest ...
In 1897, St. Peter's became part of the newly formed German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Manitoba.
August Resler
In 1932 the Ladies' Aid was organized. All business was done in German. The first members were:
Prior to the consecration of the graveyard, parishoners were buried on Falk** farm. When the cemetery was opened, the first burial was that of a Catholic woman, Mrs. Mary Stevenson as the Catholic Church did not yet have a graveyard.
1st Sunday School Teacher
R. S. Schultz
In 1918, the United Lutheran Synod and the Synod of the South became one and were known as the United Lutheran Church of America. St. Peter's was part of this Synod, and received funding from the Mission Board.
First Organist
August Schultz
Pauline Shultz (Mrs. Heinz)
Sam Radke
First Elected Fireman
Julius Schultz
Sam Radke in 1913 for $10/yr
S. Cyrus
Martha, infant daughter of Fred & Agatha Schultz was the first Lutheran buried.
The 25th anniversary of the Aid was celebrated in 1957
NOTE ON THE CEMETERY: **Falk Farm: Originally the Stedel homestead at 14-43-22-4. First buried there was Henry Stedel at Christmas 1895. Others were buried there later and the graves moved in 1908 to the St. Peter's cemetery.
The Confirmations of St. Peter's members The 1st Adult Confirmation class
Confirmations were held in Wetaskiwin, until April 10, 1904 when the following were confirmed at the new church: Led by Pastor Winter, the first adult Confirmation class taught in English was comprised of:
Leokodia Radke (Mrs. Gus Belter)
Mary Zado
Holdine Schultz (Mrs. Rudolph Winter)
Ann Tennis (Mrs. Dave Read)
Holdine Winter
Dorthea Weins (Mrs. Mike Zimmer)
August Stedel
William Schultz (son of August Schultz, Sr.)
John Tennis
William Schultz (son of Rudolph Schultz, Sr.)
Billie Schultz
Emil Schultz
Julius Tennis
Bill Hensch
Richard Radke
Charlie Riske
Paul Schultz
Herbert Schultz
Ludwig Schultz
Based on several excerpts from Mecca Glen Memories (1968) and other reference materials

St. Cross( Krez) Lutheran Church
The Evangelical Lutheran Krez (Cross) congregation was formed by the Ohio Synod in May, 1908 by Reverend GERUKIE from Winnipeg.
Reverend LEIHNWEIBER first held services in Schultz School, and later in Fred Witzkie's house, where confirmation classes were held as well. May, 1909 saw the first confirmation services where Emma Schultz (later Mrs. Henry Riske), Mary Schickerowsky (Mrs. Gus Riske) and Henry Riske were the first confirmants.
In the fall of 1909 the foundation was laid on the farm of Carl Riske, S.E. 35-42-22-4. The builders were Ollie Olsen and Henry Larsen of Ferintosh, with contributions from members as well as the townspeople of Bashaw, Alix, Ponoka and Wetaskiwin.
In May, 1910 the church was dedicated to the glory of God by Reverend Gurkie Zasskkie Loisky.
The first wedding was a double one, when two sisters were married to two brothers, Gus K. SCHULTZ to Ida SCHULTZ and William SCHULTZ to Annie SCHULTZ.
The first burial was the infant daughter of Mr. and Mrs. August S. SCHULTZ.
The church was sold in 1956 to Bennie STADEL, who tore it down and used the lumber to build his house.
The Pastors Founding Families
Radake (Camrose, 1932 - 38)
Miller (Camrose, 1938 - abt '41)
Edward Schickerowsky
William Traptow
Mike Zimmer
Carl Riske
Herman Ott
Carl Furmann
Based on several excerpts from Mecca Glen Memories (1968)

Rimbey United Church
Within a month settling in the Kansas Ridge district in 1901, the Rimbey families built three log cabins at the top of the Blind Man Valley. A Sunday School was organized at the home of Jim RIMBEY. When the house became too small for the congregations, and the services, Church and Sunday School, were transferred to the Ben RIMBEY house where they continued until 1903, when the new Kansas Ridge School was made available to the congregation.
Norwegian services were held at the Vigs log cabin, until the new Methodist log church was completed at Bentley. Once the church was completed, services were held at the log church in the morning and then again in the afternoon at the Rimbey family homes.
John Wright was the first resident pastor. He came in 1907 and it was as a result of his enthu-siasm that the first church was built. Logs were cut, hauled, sawed and planed at George Cumming's sawmill west of Leedale, and the lumber hauled back to Rimbey. Early residents who helped with this project were Sinclair Mellis (who skidded logs with an ox), the Rimbey brothers, Allan Langmuir, George Budd, Henry Watts, Hiram and 'Coin Cutler, Samuel Gwin, Willie Picketts, and many more.
Construction of the church was begun in 1908 and completed in the fall of 1909. on land donated by Jim Rimbey. F.W. Picketts, Clifford Hewitt, and Sinclair Mellis were the carpenters, aided by almost all the men in the district who donated their labor as they could. The spire of the new church was built by Ben Rimbey and a bell for it was donated by Sam Rim-bey, who had brought it all the way from Kansas, intending it for a farm gong or dinner bell.
The first minister to preach in the new church was David Young 1909-1910, nicknamed "Little Da-vid" (which did not please him at all), Mr. Young was so short that a six-inch platform was built be-hind the pulpit so that he and the congregation could see each other. Dr. Riddell was the preacher at the dedication service. The choir which sang at the opening of the new church in the fall of 1909 was organized by Ian Macdonald of Lavesta.
Members of the choir included Ethel Rimbey (Veefkind) Lorue Rimbey (Eckardt), Aretha Rimbey (Wright), Verna Gwin (Lloyd) Leila Picketts (Jack-son), Ina Picketts (Spinks), Pearl Everhart (Cox) Ma-rie Coverdale (Pierson), Mabel Budd (Hewitt), Pearl and Ruth Tegart, Stuart Hillburn, Willie Gwin, Carl Cox, and Phinehas Rimbey. In 1910 Mr. Hillburn became the choir leader.
During all these years the preaching "circuit" of the Rimbey field as established by John Wright in-cluded Calkin's Valley (Lockhart), Potter Creek, Wittenberg (Leedale), Springdale, and Bluffton.
In 1948, while Rev. Jewitt Parr was minister, the Church was moved from Jasper Ave. to the back of the church property where it faced north on 51st. Avenue. It was placed over a full basement to provide extra Sunday School rooms, and additions were built to provide front and back entries and a choir loft. The interior was redecorated and a new lectern and pulpit, communion table and baptism font were added.
The first manse was built in 1911 beside the church facing onto Jasper Avenue. It was a large house containing four upstairs bedrooms, with a kitchen, dining-room, living-room, and ministers study downstairs. In 1950-1951 a new manse was built at 5038-54 Avenue containing the same num-ber of rooms, plus bathrooms (which the original manse lacked!)
By 1964, while Al Skinner was minister, the con-gregation had again outgrown the church building. A brick church was carefully designed and built in front of, and joining, the old church. The dedication services were held Nov. 20, 1964. The sanctuary's centre aisle expresses the symbolism of the "path of life" to the ultimate goal of life: Communion with God, and resurrection through the Cross. The first thing that strikes the eye of the worshipper is the rugged cross. It is of native birch and was obtained locally by Rev. Skinner and Dave Adams.
In the foyer is a beautiful stained glass window donated in memory of Murray Abbot by his wife. Its unique design is the work of Marilyn Dyer and Iona Skinner, and shows how God's love speaks in a very vivid way in the Rimbey area.
The central symbol, traditional for God's spirit, is the scarlet dove descending with an olive leaf in its beak reminding us of God's covenant-to be with man always. Radiant sunbeams recall "the heavens declare the Glory of God". The leaf symbolizes peace and hope. God's rich blessings are shown by the single stalk of barley on the life side. The scarlet cross symbolizes Christ's sacrifice, and the inner circle on the cross stands for the eternity of God. Blue sky behind the cross symbolizes the life-giving air and rains.
Relating more specifically to the Rimbey area, the lower part of the design shows the hills of the Blindman Valley. Wheat sheaves symbolize agricul-ture and the produce of the land. An oil well sym-bolizes the oil industry, the professions, and the earth's store of natural resources.
The nails in the lower left-hand corner speak of the dignity of human labor, reminding that work is necessary for complete human fulfillment, Flowers tell of the beauties of nature, a violin symbolizes music and all the arts, a sleeping lamb speaks of the gifts of the animal world. Faces of many races in the lower right symbolize the brotherhood of all men in the God's world.
The first "School House" Student Ministers The first Sunday School Teachers
A.C. Ward (1902)
Mr. Wyman
Mr. Cole
Ernest J. Tate
John N. Wright
Dr. W.T. Young
Mrs. T.A. Iddings
Mrs. Oscar Rimbey
Mrs. Jim Rimbey
Mrs. Bernice Aunger
Mrs. Henry Watts
Ina Picketts
Mrs. T.A. Iddings
Aretha Rimbey
Mr. L.S. Cutler
Mr. George Budd
Ministers and Laymen: (after the church building was erected)
Mr David "Little David" Young
Rev. Winfield D. Race
Mr. Charles E. Rogers
Rev. W.J. Huston
Mr. Ed F. Kemp
Rev. George Steele
Mr. R. Egbert Newman
Mr. J.J. Farguhar
Rev M. Jewitt Parr
Mr. Lionel F. Lougheed
Rev. Don G. Littlejohns
Mr. W. Ashton
Rev. William E. Julian
Rev. Harry L. Dougar
Rev. R. Oakley Dyer
Rev. Frederick Amos
Rev. Winfield D. Race
Rev. Edmond Barnes
Rev. Allister N. Skinner
Rev. George A. Sander
Rev. Ed Scarlett
Rev. Silvanus Edworthy
Rev. Allister N. Skinner
Rev. A. J. Law
Rev. Jerry deVries
Mr. F.J. Clarke
Rev. Alex MacLennon
Mr. J.R. Brown
Rev. Wm. Thompson
Mr. Bernard Gross
Rev. Beverly Hill
1981 - ?
Rev. George D. Young
Based on an excerpt from "Over the Years: A History of the Rimbey Area" and other reference materials

Rimbey Seventh Day Adventist Church



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