St. Bartholomew's Church, Ottawa
Continuation of the tradition of Governor's General shields
The Church of St. Bartholomew is part of the Anglican Diocese of Ottawa and has served the communities of New Edinburgh, Rockcliffe Park, Lindenlea and Ottawa since its founding in 1866. On Christmas Day 2008 the Church celebrated the 140th anniversary of the first service in the stone church on December 25, 1868.
It was in October 1866, just after the government of the province of Canada had moved to the new capital of Ottawa, and the Governor General into Rideau Hall], that a meeting was held to organize a mission in the suburban village of New Edinburgh. Soon after this, under the aegis of St. Alban’s, Sandy Hill, the first service was held in a schoolhouse in Crichton Street. With the encouragement of the Governor General and his wife, Lord and Lady Monck, who held a benefit concert at Her Majesty’s Theatre in the spring of 1867, the parish was formally organized at a meeting on St. Bartholomew’s Day (14 August), six weeks after Confederation. On the strength of donations from the Governor General, the estate of Thomas MacKay (which gave the land) and the St. Lawrence Railway - all property holders in the village - an architect was engaged. It has been the Governors General's parish since then.
On the side walls, at the springing of the roof, is a series of the heraldic shields of all the Governors General of Canada since Confederation; these were given by K.H. Harris and his wife and were painted by the heraldic expert Alan Brookman Beddoe, OC, OBE, OStJ, FRHSC. Alan had painted all of the shields until the last one, the Hon. Jules Léger, before he died in 1975. They run consecutively from the south-east corner of the church to the north-east.
The shields following Léger, which include the Hon. Edward Schreyer and the Hon. Jeanne Sauvé were painted by the Fraser Herald, Cathy Bursey-Sabourin, FRHSC of the Canadian Heraldic Authority. The tradition was then continued by Society's member, R. Gordon M. Macpherson CM, FRHSC, Niagara Herald Extraordinary by painting the shields for the Hon. Ramon J. Hnatyshyn, the Hon. Roméo LeBlanc and the Hon. Adrienne Clarkson.
As of 2011, the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada agreed to continue this heraldic tradition, by underwriting and donating shields of the former Governor General, the Hon. Michaölle Jean and the current Governor General, H.E. the Rt. Hon. David Johnston, CC, CMM, COM, CD, the Society's Patron, and continue with future Governors General of Canada. The hardwood shields were cut,prepared and donated by the Society's member, David M. Cvet, FRHSC (Hon). The heraldry artist painting the shields is Society's member, Ms. Ilona Jurkiewicz, FRHSC (Hon), a noted heraldic artist who has painted numerous artwork for the Canadian Heraldic Authority.
Presentation of the Governors' General Shields at St. Bart's
The following is a presentation of each of the shields suspended, or to be suspended in the interior of St. Bart's beginning with the current Governor General. Each image of the shield is accompanied with a short biography of its respective Governor General. Click on any image to view a larger image of the shield in a pop-up window. Photo credit (shields): David M. Cvet, FRHSC (Hon)
May 01, 2008