St. Andrew'sThe history of the Church of England in the Timberlea area dates back many years. On May 27, 1846, Cyrus Boutilier deeded a piece of land to the Lord Bishop of Nova Scotia, John Inglis, “for the purpose of a burial ground and for the erection of a church or place of worship in connection with the Church of England, otherwise known as the “Protestant Episcopal Church”. The church was started but never finished. The story is told that the church was actually being built for the Protestants living along the road. The Church of England people wanted a cross on the church and the Baptist people did not want the cross. So they disagreed and took the church down and sold it. It was moved to French Village and built as St. Paul’s Anglican Church.

It was not until 1919 that an Anglican Church was built in Timberlea. Charles and Roland Fraser came home from the war and they and Mr. W. Simms Lee began talking about erecting a church. (An interesting note about Mr. Simms Lee is that he was a Chartered Accountant who emigrated from England and was one of the founding members of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants and a founding member of the Halifax firm of Lee and Martin. He was a long-time lay reader at St. Andrew’s and is buried in our cemetery). The decision was made that a church in our area was needed. Mr. George Fraser gave the land for the church on Fraser Road. The Fraser family provided much of the lumber required for the building. When the building was completed, through community effort, the first service was held. The date was August 17, 1919. Mr. W. Simms Lee, a Layreader, officiated. Mr. Lee continued to lead the services of the church, with assistance from ordained clergy for the Holy Eucharist and other special occasions, until his death in June 1941. Follow this link for an article published by The Institute of Chartered Accountants of NS in December 1983 (Reflections, William Simms Lee)

The original St. Andrew’s Church was part of the Parish of Indian Harbour. The Rector of that parish however, was very busy and not really able to devote the time he would have liked to Timberlea. Consequently, from 1920 to 1942, priests of Trinity Church in Halifax served the Anglicans in Timberlea. Notable among them was Rev. Dr. L. J. Donaldson, Rector of Trinity Church, Halifax, from 1903 to 1939. In 1942 he was appointed priest-in-charge of Timberlea. He served in this capacity until December, 1944, when Archbishop Kingston appointed St. Andrew’s, Timberlea to be a part of the Parish of St. Paul’s, Terrence Bay. Rev. G. C. Brown was the Rector serving Timberlea from 1944 to 1951.

In 1952, when the Rev. E. V. Poirier was appointed priest-in-charge of Timberlea, there began discussions of erecting of a new church in Timberlea. There was plenty of land. On May 20, 1922, George Fraser and his sons had deeded to the Lord Bishop of Nova Scotia, Clarendon Worrell, a piece of land bordering on that which Cyrus Boutilier had deeded in 1846. Plans for the new church were made. Its erection was truly the effort of the entire congregation. Built to the design of D. D. Sinclair, the job was supervised by William Mitchell, a member of the congregation, who was a carpenter. Under the outstanding leadership of the Wardens, Arthur Johnson and Harold Crosby, and Warren Mackenzie, a devote Layreader of the church, volunteer labor raised the plans for this building to a reality. While the men of the congregation laboured diligently on the building, the women of the congregation worked very hard to raise the funds necessary over and above the diocesan loan.

The men framed the building. The windows and doors were designed by Whittaker’s. It is of interest to note that, in the original plans, there was to be a large window at the east end of the church above the altar. In 1995 a beautiful stained glass window was installed .

The Building was not only constructed through volunteer labor but also many of the furnishings, such as the lectern, the pulpit and the hymn boards, were made by Vincent Peach. The litany desk was made by Robert Burgess and the altar rail was made at the Halifax Shipyards and presented as a gift by Harold Crosby.

The original altar came from the old church on Fraser’s Road, as did the font and the processional cross. What wonderful links with our past.

In January, 1956, Timberlea and Lakeside were separated from the Parish of Terrence Bay and the Rev. Doering was appointed deacon in charge of Timberlea.

On June 1, 1956, the newly completed church was presented to the Lord Bishop of Nova Scotia, Harold Waterman, for dedication. The impressive ceremonies were set in the context of the lovely service of Evensong. The sermon was preached by Rev. Rhodes Cooper of St. Phillip’s Church in Halifax. The splendid service closed very appropriately with the beautiful old hymn:

“Bowed low in supplication,
We come, O Lord, to thee;
Thy grace alone can save us,
To thee alone we flee.
We come for this our parish,
Thy mercy to implore;
On church, and homes, and people,
O Lord, thy blessings pour.”

When Rev. Doering was priested in 1957, he became Rector of St. Andrew’s, Timberlea.

The history of St. Andrew’s Church, Timberlea, has been marked by many moments of generosity and progress. The following represent some of these moments:

  • In June, 1957, St. James Church, Armdale, gave to St. Andrew’s their electric organ. Our old pump organ found a new home at the Mission to Seamen.
  • In August, 1958, 18 pews were acquired from Bethany United Church in Halifax. The congregation paid for 5 of them at $45 each. The remaining pews were gifted. They were all cleaned, painted and placed in the church for the Christmas celebration in 1958.
  • In February, 1959, the old church on Fraser Road was sold, together with the land on which it stood. The proceeds, $800, were placed in a special account for the purchase of a rectory.
  • In February, 1959, new choir stalls were made by Allens and placed in the church.
  • In December, 1959, a new altar was placed in the church in memory of Warren MacKenzie. It was dedicated at the Christmas Eucharist, 1959. A new credence table was placed and dedicated at the same time. The old altar from the original St. Andrew’s eventually found a home in the chapel of Park Haven Estates Nursing Home.
  • In January, 1960, wooden kneelers were made for all the pews. In December, 1960, a well was bored for the church complex. In June, 1962, the grants which St. Andrew’s, Timberlea had been receiving from St. James, Armdale, were ended.
  • In March, 1963, a new chalice and paten were placed in the church.
  • In October, 1963, Canon Williams, who had served St. Andrew’s from 1959 to 1961, placed a new missal in the church.
  • In 1964, a stage was built in the hall below the church. This addition facilitated entertainments for the purpose of fund raising for the church.
  • In July, 1965, the church lands were surveyed and in September, 1968, Durling Pulsifer deeded to the church an additional piece of land on the south side of lands given in 1846 and 1922.
  • In 1967, the Sunday School class of Beverly Slade decided, as a Centennial project, to raise enough funds to have all the kneelers in the church padded and upholstered. Through their efforts, this was able to be done in April, 1969.
  • It was in December, 1967, that the church bell was installed. How beautiful it must have been to hear it ringing out the glorious glad tidings of the birth of our Lord.
  • In March, 1968, while Arthur Johnson was working at the Halifax Dockyard, the wooden cross on the processional staff was replaced by the brass cross from the altar of the original St. Andrew’s Church.
  • In 1972, the large wooden cross, which graces the reredos on the east wall above the altar, was placed in memory of Edith Wood Hirtle. It was dedicated at the Christmas Eucharist, 1972.
  • At Easter, 1974, the paschal candle stand was placed and dedicated to the glory of God and in memory of Durling Pulsifer.

Three months later on March 4, 1979, Bishop Arnold consecrated St. Andrew’s Church. Rev. Poirier of the Canadian Armed Forces was the preacher for the occasion. He was certainly an appropriate choice as it was, as you will recall, during his time that plans for the present church were made. At this time also a variety of gifts were dedicated. St. Andrew’s Guild presented a new set of white hangings. Prayer books were placed in memory of Ida Jarrett and a guest book in memory of Clarasia Edmunds.

Through the years, St. Andrew’s Church has been blessed with many gifts of books, linens, hangings, etc. We praise God for the kindness of our donors and we remember before God all in whose memories the many gifts have been placed. May they rest in peace and may light perpetual shine upon them.

In the fall of 1981, chancel rails, made by Weldon Rhyno and Gerry Titus and finished by Joe Jones, and a baptistery, made by Bill Morgan, Grey Beswick, Brian Wilson, and Weldon Rhyno were installed.

In 1988, during the time of, Rev. Duanne Tanswell, we were able to put new vinyl siding on the outside of our church. The money was raised through the congregation by selling “blocks of siding” to the parishioners.

After Rev. Ron Walker became our Rector in 1994, a number of projects were undertaken. The Vestry rooms were converted to the Memorial Fellowship Room in 1998. In 1999, the wallboard in the nave was removed and replaced with gyproc. The funds for this project were raised in the same way as for the siding.

Another addition was the Book of Remembrance and stand. In this book are recorded names of parishioners and relatives of parishioners who have passed away. Each week the names of those who passed away on that anniversary are read, and once a year, during a Memorial Service, all names are read.

During the late 1990’s stained glass windows were installed in our church through memorial donations. The first one installed was the large window at the east end of the church over the altar. This window had been part of the original plans of the church, and was placed in memory of James Gordon Alguire, April 30, 1995.

The side windows eventually followed with all the windows installed in time for our 80th Anniversary Celebration. These windows were dedicated by Bishop Fred Hiltz at a special anniversary service in November of 1999.

  • The first window of the birth of Jesus being foretold to the Virgin Mary, was placed in memory of Jobe and Susan Thorne.
  • The second window of the birth of Jesus was placed in memory of Gordon and Mona Dort.
  • The third window showing Jesus in the carpenter shop with his father, Joseph, was placed in memory of Donald Gordon Richardson.
  • The fourth window of the Baptism of Jesus was placed in memory of Joseph Jones.
  • The fifth window depicting the Last Supper was placed in memory of Florence Beswick.
  • The sixth window showing Jesus praying in the Garden of Gethsemane was placed in memory of David G. G. Strachan.
  • The seventh window showing the Crucifixion was placed in memory of Gordon and Sadie Alguire.
  • The Resurrection and eighth window was placed in memory of Charles, Aubrey and Roland Fraser.

We have been very fortunate to have so many stained glass windows placed in our church. In more recent years, the window in the balcony of Jesus’ Ascension was placed in memory of Beverley Elaine Fraser. Harold and Una Beaver donated funds to place stained glass windows over the entranceway, in the bell tower and both choir rooms. The beautiful window over the entranceway depicts our doxology which we sing at the end of our services, “Go Now In Peace”. The choir room windows depict our four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Over the years we have seen numerous other memorials place in our church in memory of loved ones. Some of them are mentioned here:

  • A lectern light in memory of Alice Gough
  • A Canada Flag in memory of the passengers and crew of the Swissair Flight
  • A Sanctuary Light in memory of Allan Proctor
  • A Book of Remembrance Stand in memory of Joseph Jones
  • A Prayer Request Stand
  • An Advent Candle Stand which converts to a Lectern and Candle Stand
  • New Missals
  • New Book of Gospels
  • New missal stands for the altar

St. Andrews'sDuring the eighties and nineties we had one of the largest Sunday Schools in our Diocese. We had approximately 60 to 70 children registered each year with upwards of 50 children attending on a regular basis. During these years we had 6 to 7 teachers teaching the children, which were divided into classes of different age groups.

In the late eighties a new group was formed for the younger women in our congregation. This group was called the St. Andrew’s Ladies Group and came under the wing of the Diocesan ACW. In the beginning, St. Andrew’s Ladies Group held their meetings in members’ homes until they grew too large. Most of their meetings are now held in the church hall with a membership of 20. This group was first established as a fellowship group but later took on a commitment to help the church financially when they can. They hold two yard sales each year to raise money and also do catering for funerals, special services and other functions as they arise.

In 2002, St. Andrew’s Guild which had been established in 1949, disbanded after 53 years of service to the church. The Guild Members were a very dedicated group of ladies who committed themselves to full-time ministry for our church. In years gone by they held “New to You” sales, Tea and Sales, held luncheons for special functions, made crafts and knitted goods for their annual Tea and Sale. At this time, the Ladies Group took on some of the projects that the Guild had always been responsible for. Worthy of mention is the Mission to Seafarers shoe box Christmas project and the sale of church calendars.

In 1985 the rectory on Brentwood Ave. in Greenwood Heights was sold and a larger rectory on Maplewood Dr. was purchased.

In 1994 additional work on the rectory was done before the arrival of Rev. Ron Walker, laying new carpets and painting the walls and fixing up the bathroom.

In 2000 more renovations at the rectory were done before the arrival of Rev. Steven Brown. A large bedroom and walk-in closet were constructed in the basement with the intention of later on installing a shower downstairs.

When Rev. Ann Bersky arrived in 2002, a fence was built in the backyard and some work was done on the outside deck.

Eventually in 2004 this rectory was sold as it was determined that it was no longer required.

Over the years we have raised up four members of our congregation to the ministry. Kim Foote who is now the Rev. Kim Little was ordained as a priest in 1992. In 1998, the Rev. Judie Lafford was ordained as a Non-Stipendiary Priest. Rev. David Dellapinna was ordained as a priest in October of 2001. It is interesting to note that both Rev. Judie and Rev. David began as Lay Readers. Rev. Marilyn Hamlin was ordained Deacon on June 11, 2012. Rev. Marilyn Hamlin began her ministry as a Lay Reader.

In 2002 a new roof was put on St. Andrew’s church along with a new cross. The money for the new roof was raised through the congregation enabling the loan for the roof to be paid off quickly.

In December of 2005 the Fellowship Room was converted into an office for our new priest-in-charge, Rev. Michael Conrad. He became our Rector in January of 2006. A design was drawn up by Tim Edwards, a member of our congregation. Once Parish Council approved these changes office furniture, a computer, printer, and a bookcase were purchased and this new office became a reality.

In late 2006 a men’s group was formed for all the men of the parish. A Men’s Breakfast is held once a month. These breakfasts are an opportunity to enjoy great food, fellowship and occasional speakers.

In 2008, major renovations were done in the church hall. New steel interior entrance doors were installed. The kitchen was completely taken out and new gyproc, paint, cupboards, sinks, and a floor were installed, using a plan that was drawn up by Tim Edwards. The dishwasher, which had been installed in 2007, was incorporated in the new kitchen.

Over the years we have had Layreaders and Eucharistic Ministers assist at our regular services. Layreaders who have served at St. Andrew’s include:

  • W. Simms Lee
  • Warren Mackenzie
  • George Dunn
  • Jacqueline (Jackie) Barr
  • A. Barrett (Barry) Fraser
  • Rev. Judie Lafford (now a non-stipendary Priest at St. Andrew’s)
  • Sharron MacKenzie
  • Donna Ruggles
  • Rev. David Dellapinna (now a Priest in the Diocese)
  • Virginia (Jinny) Giza
  • Wendy Wells
  • Marilyn Hamlin


Current Lay Readers:

  • Wendy Wells
  • Donna Ruggles


Current Eucharistic Ministers are:

  • Don Schwartz
  • Jinny Giza
  • Gordon Hamlin
  • Donna Ruggles
  • Wendy Wells

We have also benefited from the service of Altar Servers and currently have a roster consisting of both adults and youth.

Current Altar Servers

  • Gordon Hamlin
  • Don Schwartz

The Parish of St. Andrew’s has been a training ground for a great number of our Diocesan Priests. Among them are Rev. Peter Harris, Rev. Glen Kent, Rev. Jack Tattrie, Rev. Ken Vaughan, Rev. Leslie Ball, Rev. Eldie Richard, Rev. Brian Hutchins, Rev. Fran Boutilier, Rev. Lisa Vaughn, Rev. Gloria Lee, Rev. Rob Elford and Rev. Liz Earley.

The following is a list of the clergy who have served the congregation of St. Andrew’s:

1919-1941 Mr. W. Simms Lee (Layreader)
1942-1944 Rev. L J Donaldson
1944-1951 Rev. G C Brown
1952-1954 Re v. F V Poirier
1955- Rev. Robert Crouse
1955-1958 Rev. Doering
1959-1961 Rev. Canon Williams
1961- Rev. Hobby
1962-1963 Rev. Richard Mowry
1963-1968 Rev. Leslie Dignan
1968-1970 Rev. Creighton Brown
1971- Rev. Glen Kent, Rev. Peter Harris, Rev. Jack Tattrie
1972-1974 Rev. Robert Coote
1974-1981 Rev. David Boston
1981-1984 Rev. Fred Hiltz (Currently Primate of all Canada)
1985-1993 Rev. Duanne Tanswell
1994-2000 Rev. Ronald Walker
2000-2002 Rev. Steven Brown
2002-2005 Rev. Ann Bersky-Harrington
2005-2013 Rev. Michael Conrad
2014-present Rev. Mark Pretty