The following Sunday [? Not sure of reference here?] was another busy day. Canon Proctor had motored me the day before to Sunset Prairie where we met Mr. G. E. Bratt. That night I was entertained in his bachelor shack. On Sunday morning we motored to the log church recently finished, built by the generosity of Miss Eva Hasell. The work on this building was entirely done by the men of the district, led by Mr. J. Shibley and Mr. Sketchley. It is well built, and splendidly furnished. The log building fits it beautifully with its surroundings. Here there was a confirmation class of six adults, and the Church was consecrated with about 75 people present.
From Sunset Prairie Canon Proctor and I motored to Kilkerran, a distance of 39 miles, where a large congregation awaited. This church was built some time since, but the interior has just been completed and is now a very neat and appropriate place of worship. There was a class of 14 to be confirmed and I consecrated the church. We then proceeded to Rolla, where a really striking new church has been erected at cost of three thousand dollars. There is a good concrete basement with furnace and electric lighting. It is furnished completely and a nice chancel and tower make the church look most ecclesiastical — it would grace a much larger town. It will not only serve the church people of the village, but also the best farming area in the whole district. About 175 people were present. Many of them are very keen and will be sure to make Rolla a strong church centre. Subsequently we met the Pouce Coupe people, who discussed the erection of a new church in that town. They have already raised about a thousand dollars and have the promise of £ 100 from England. They will start to work not later than next spring. Too much cannot be said about the workers who have made possible all the progress in this great district. The work of Canon Proctor, superintendent of the whole area, is beyond praise. As recognition of his contribution, he has been made honorary Canon of St. Andrews Cathedral. The rev. G. H. Wolfendale has also won for himself an enviable place north of the Peace. The women workers have been a tower of strength to the clergy. Readers of the North British Columbia News should know the names of these ladies: Miss Monica Storrs, Miss Haslam, Miss Harmer, Miss Goodenough,
Miss Gibson and Miss Mortimer
The last mentioned are in charge of the mission van, the upkeep of which is cared for by Miss Hasell. Neither must it forgotten that it is the splendid help of the Colonial and Continental Church Society which has made possible the progressive work accomplished in this Peace River Block. The Fellowship of the West has also come to our assistance to the North of the Peace River in a way that merits the warm thanks of all interested in the Diocese of Caledonia.
One who is in close touch with current happenings at Fort St. John has supplied the following additional and interesting information.
Mr. Wolfendale is the first resident clergyman of the Church of England in the Fort St. John District and is entering into his work with energy and sympathy. His experience in lumber-camps after serving in the Great War has familiarized him with the conditions of life among the settlers. The impulse given to this satisfactory development of the Church’s activity is largely due to the pioneer work of Miss Monica Storrs during the year 1929-30, which she spent at Fort St. John. She introduced, among the children, Sunday Schools and the Scouts and Guides Movements, and so prepared the way for more organized church life. This work, during Miss Storrs’ return to England last winter, was carried on and developed by Miss Muriel Haslam. A new log house built by Miss Storrs for herself and her fellow workers (Miss Haslam, Miss Cecilia Goodenough and Miss Adeline Harmer who is paying a six months’ visit) was completed just in time to be blessed by the Bishop. It is on a site commanding a beautiful view of the Peace River and is centrally situated for its purpose.
The Bishop’s visit coincided with the arrival of Miss Williams from Vancouver to inspect the Guides, as the Provincial Commissioner for British Columbia. Quite recently a most successful camp had been held at Charley Lake, which took place in brilliant weather. It is described as “a perfect camp in continuous sunshine, the children goodness itself, friendly and docile, happy and interested. There was never one moment’s quarrel or grievance. Altogether a wonderful time”. The Guides succeeded to the Scouts’ Camp, presided over by the well-known Canadian Scoutmaster, the Rev. Guiton of Montreal Cathedral, assisted by Mr. Whatmough. This was Mr. Guiton’s second visit to this district, which owes to his interest and activity as Secretary of the Fellowship of the West a debt too great to be expressed in words.
North British Columbia News, October 1931.