TrinityGrace Chronology

1909, Spring

   Grace Methodist Church began serving the community through the help of Rev Dr. Robson and the Methodist and Extension Society of Vancouver. Rev Dr. A.M. Sanford and Rev Dr. E. Robson purchased its land at the corner of 16th and Burns (i.e. the current home of Trinity Grace United Church). It’s 1st official Service was in May, 1909, by Rev W. Elliott.

1909, June

   The Methodists began in 1908 in a small school building at Fourth Avenue and Vine. Kitsilano Methodist church was completed across the street and was dedicated.

1910

   Kitsilano Presbyterian Church was built in 1910 at the corner of Third Avenue and Vine Street.

1912

   St James Church was established to do work in an ‘outlying’ area of Vancouver, at 2627 Trafalgar Road, for the First Congregational Church in Vancouver. This was one of two roots that grew into Trinity Grace United Church.

1916

   Financial issues closed the St James, 2627 Trafalgar Road church location until its reopening May 16th, 1920. 

1925, January

   Grace Church, under the ministry of Rev H. W. Horton, joined the United Church in January of 1925.

1925, January

   St James joined the United Church in January of 1925, as it renamed itself Trafalgar Road United Church.

1925, January

   Kitsilano Presbyterian Church and Kitsilano Methodist Church entered the United Church. Kitsilano Presbyterian became St. Stephen’s United Church and Kitsilano Methodist became Crosby United Church. In July 1952, Crosby United Church and St. Stephen’s United Church amalgamated and became Kitsilano United Church, where they met in the Crosby United Church building at Second and Larch.

1928, March 25th

   Trafalgar Road United Church closed March 25, 1928 to move to a new location.

1928, June 17th

   The Trafalgar Road United Church reopened at 10th Avenue and Trutch as St. James United Church.

1940

   Rev George H. Hamilton resigns Grace United to work as Padre at Officers Training Center in the Gordon Head camp and eventually being promoted to Major as the Senior Protestant Chaplain of the Sixth Canadian Division.

1949, April

   Grace United celebrates a 40th anniversary.

   Rev George H. Hamilton resigns Grace United to work as Padre at Officers Training Center in the Gordon Head camp and eventually being promoted to Major as the Senior Protestant Chaplain of the Sixth Canadian Division.

1952, July

   Crosby United Church and St. Stephen’s United Church amalgamated and became Kitsilano United Church, where they met in the Crosby United Church building at Second and Larch.

1955, February 10th

   St. James growth lead to expansion north to 10th Avenue. This dedication reflects completion.

1956, November

   Plans for a new building began in 1956, and the new Kitsilano United Church building at Second and Larch was opened in November, 1959.

1959, May 17th

   The original Grace church with all its additions was replaced and dedicated. At its dedication the name became Grace Memorial Church, in honor of those who had offered their lives for freedom.

In Memory

1982, December

   Grace Memorial Church became the 1st distribution point for the Vancouver Food Bank.

1983, February 17

   Grace Memorial had days of over 1,000 using its food bank distribution service.

1983, July 3rd, 5 am

   Grace Memorial United Church burnt down. At 10:30 am the congregation met for worship at Mount-View United Church.
   The minister, Rev Val Anderson also was the chairman of the food bank. He predicted the need for 5000 weekly food bags by the end the winter season. Continued work helped secure funding from changing sources and the on going delivery points at: West Burnaby United Church, St Jude’s Catholic Church, the Native Indian Centre, Christ Church Cathedral, and the North Shore Neighborhood House

1984, September 7th

  Window 1 was dedicated in loving memory of Ernest Morley by his wife and family.
  Window 2 was dedicated in loving memory of Mr. & Mrs. R. Merrick by Mellie & Bert McNeill.
  Window 3 was dedicated in loving memory of Gladys Robertson by May Paulson.
  Window 4 was dedicated in loving memory of William J. Kilfedder & Walter H. Cooper by their families.
  Window 5 was dedicated in loving memory of Mr. & Mrs. George Harron, Mrs. M.L. McEown, Mr & Mrs E.N. Harford, Mr F. Westcott and Mr. Hole, all ow whom are remembered from our former church windows.
  Window 6 was dedicated in loving memory of the Andrew and Reid families.
  Window 7 was presented by the Sunday School Students and friends of Grace Memorial United Church 1983 – 1984.

New Stain Glass Windows
   After a fire of 1983, that destroyed the churches 20 by 30 foot stain glass window, seven new two by eight foot windows were commissioned for the rebuilt church. Alicen Davie, the 25 year old daughter of Don Babcock, the one who created that prior window in 1959, was tasked with this new challenge.
   Symbols and esthetics are the base of the seven windows: the Greek letters alpha and omega, the burning bush, the dove and the Bible. The windows reflect, Christs birth, a churches dedication to the children, the law, the human ability to receive, the Last Supper, Christs promise to mankind and the tree of life which Babcock called the “sacred marriage”.
   The design has based on the lead lines, the flat blocks of color combined into simple designs.
   Like the 12th century artists Alicen respected, little glass painting was done to the handblown glass from Germany, France and England primarily used. Alicen did paint some pieces, like the head of the Christ child, later fired at 1250 ºF to melt those images into the glass.
   These windows are unique in how they modify church mood, depending on lighting. Sunny days, cloudy days or at night when light comes from inside, all have different impacts.

1984, September 16th, 7:30 pm

   Grace United Church rebuilt and rededicate. The third church building to be built on this site had the same outside dimensions as it predecessor. A member of the congregation who, as a child, attended the 1st church Service at this site in 1909, May Harron, was still among the regular worshipers.
   Unlike its predecessor, it incorporated new features. Handicap access was available to both floors. The sound system now included support for those hard of hearing and distribution of a video tape feed. It would now also include new Seniors Craft and Hobby, St John Ambulance Youth Brigade, and Academy of Religion and Life activity centers.
   The $370,000 investment the new church required still needed $30,000 at the time of dedication.

1988

   Discussions about the amalgamation of Kitsilano United Church and St. James United Church began.

1992, June 14th

   St. James United Church and Kitsilano United Church agreed to amalgamate under the new name of Trinity United Church. That amalgamation was confirmed at this service.

1993, April

   St. James United Church and Kitsilano United Church continued to hold services at both churches until arrangements at 2nd and Larch location were completed.

1994

   The Trinity United Church worked with a non profit society (i.e. St James Community Square Society) to arrange that the old St James property become a multi-purpose community centre… to be called St James Community Square. The Kitsilano United Church property had affordable housing built on it and was also used to partner in a new building that they shared with St. Marks Anglican parish.

2013, August

   Trinity United Church provided financial and other support to the Heartwood Community Cafe, resurrecting the locations prior tenant Rhizhome Café goals. The church’s congregation worked to help those marginalized by society, 2SLGBTQ+ and those not comfortable in a church setting. August 12th, 2016 saw the official closing of Heartwood.

2019, July

   Trinity Grace United Church became a fully accredited Affirming Ministry declaring itself to be fully inclusive and meeting complete United Church criteria. The official celebration was help the 17th of November, 2019.