Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Stormont Union Church celebrating centennial

Gospel concert to mark milestone set for June 2

  • May 8 2024
  • By Corey LeBlanc    

STORMONT — An historic building here – a pillar of the community for a century – will be the venue for an upcoming gospel concert to mark that milestone.

“It is going to be special,” Lisa Hallett, one of the organizers, said of the event scheduled for Stormont Union Church, which is nestled along Hwy. 316 in Guysborough County.

The first of 12 artists will open the show at 2 p.m. on Sunday, June 2.

“Each one will perform two songs,” Hallett noted.

She added that the musical line-up will also include congregational performances.

“It hasn’t been used for a number of years,” Hallett said of the church as a regular place of worship.

Nevertheless, it remains a sought-after location for weddings and funerals; not to mention a couple of Christmas-time celebrations that she organizes.

Not unlike many buildings of that vintage in rural parts of the province, the exact date for its erection has been difficult to nail down. (After speaking with The Journal, Hallett received a call from her husband’s aunt, who has unearthed a couple of articles confirming the 100th anniversary date is 1924.)

Through research – although documents, photos and so forth are limited due to a variety of circumstances – and conversations with those with remembrances of those early years, including members of her kin – the Walsh family – she has narrowed the birth of the hallowed structure to circa 1924.

Even if something to the contrary arises – and Hallett welcomes any and all information – the importance of celebrating the rich history of Stormont Union Church is not diminished.

“It means so much to me,” she offered.

There are other community members, such as historian Chris Cook, who share a deep affection for the church; one focused on preserving its past and solidifying its future.

“She also sees the treasure that it is,” Hallett said of Stormont Union Church secretary-treasurer Wanda Richard.

There is a core group of people who continue to maintain the building, pitching in when spring cleaning and other chores need to be carried out.

The anniversary gospel concert is free, although contributions will be accepted in the donation box that is a familiar sight to Stormont Union Church visitors.