St-James United Church


On Sat­ur­day morn­ing, I escape from work for an hour to go visit a church I had noticed the night before, as I was pac­ing St Cather­ine street up and down look­ing for food. St-James United Church is a national his­toric site of Canada and a Que­bec reli­gious her­itage build­ing. The church was hid­den behind com­mer­cial build­ings for 70 years before they were finally demol­ished in 2006. The church was there­after opened to St Cather­ine, in the heart of Mon­tréal, and came to life again.

Even as an athe­ist, I enjoy vis­it­ing places of wor­ship, tem­ples, churches or mosques. Some are beau­ti­ful work of art. Some make me under­stand why peo­ple believe, and why they find peace in these places. As I explained before, I can’t stand pros­e­lytism — but I hope I’m open-minded enough to accept that reli­gion isn’t always the root of all evils, even though some peo­ple use it as an excuse to spread hate and intolerance.

I was greeted at the entrance of the church by Rob Bull, the Super­vis­ing elder. When I asked him if I could take some pic­tures, he decided to give me the grand tour and took me upstairs where I could enjoy the overview of the inside of the church. He com­mented on many of the stained win­dow, explain­ing that one of them was actu­ally made by a Turk­ish artist in Mon­tréal, a prac­tic­ing Mus­lim. He was proud to tell me that the church wel­comed every­one, and added that many Jew­ish and Mus­lims came to pray as lunch time because they didn’t have the time to make it to their respec­tive places of wor­ship. “Every­one is wel­come here”, he said, ” “no mat­ter what you believe in and how you inter­pret your faith. We do not judge.”

This church cer­tainly gave me a great impres­sion: lovely build­ing, amaz­ing art inside and a con­gre­ga­tion that seemed friendly and open-minded. Def­i­nitely worth a visit!

You can see the full set of the pic­tures taken in Mon­tréal here.

Church Open

Church Tower

Stained Glass Window

Details of the Window

Stained Glass Window

Details of the Window

The Work of the Turk­ish Artist

Stained Glass Window

Overview of the inside of the Church


About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.


Leave A Reply

Enjoying this blog? Please spread the word :)