Letter: Destroying Zion would be an insult to many

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A couple of weeks ago I was catching up on some of my Vanguards when a letter, written by Larry Deveau, caught my eye.

Vanguard letters

A couple of weeks ago I was catching up on some of my Vanguards when a letter, written by Larry Deveau, caught my eye. He alludes to the fact he had a conversation with one of the vendors, at the farmers’ market, about the fact that Nova Scotia Heritage Trust and others are showing interest in saving Zion United Baptist Church from demolition.

The response that he got was enough to set any caring, considerate, responsible and respecting person realign. The reply was to the effect that any such was too late and where were these saviors years ago when they were needed and "tear it down."That statement was a bit asinine, don't you think? I think that any reasonable organization, when needing monetary funds, would organize a fundraising campaign. If the purpose is reasonable, the cause will be supported. We can not expect help when no attempt is made to help one self. Lots of responses are available when some constructive effort is made. 

I sadly must report that I am a member of Zion and that my wife was a member most of her life. I have her Sunday School records dating back to the 1930s. It is unbelievable that the situation that we are facing now has been allowed to happen. I have not been attending church for some years now because the erosion of the spirit and dedication could be seen being cultivated.

The trustee committee consists of 12 members and once elected have been acting as an identity unto themselves. They have their own secretary and their own appointed treasurer. The trustee committee has control of all invested funds, which mostly came from bequests etc.The problem with the bell tower was known many years ago. Instead of taking action the trustees glorified in counting funds and took a do-do attitude as to remedying the problem. Of course the problem did not go away and only got worse as the years went by and other problems developed.


A few years ago some funds were liberated and the sanctuary ceiling was painted. It was costly but much appreciated. I was an usher at the church for one of the Canadian Bible Society functions. It was attended by many people  from Pubnico, Wedgeport, and places in between. The glowing comments that I heard made me feel like I was in the right place and that it was the place to be. Again a few years ago I understand that one of the trustees was able to find a donor to finance repairs to massive stained glass west window. If this is the fact then all of the trustees are not of the same cloth and I apologize to anyone of them, past or present, for their good intentions.   


  Yarmouth has two great edifices handed to us from the late 1800s, Saint Ambrose and Zion. If Zion is to be destroyed it will be an insult to our benefactors, to those who placed the windows, to the donor that paid the cost of repairing the window, and to those who have respect for what the church stands for. If Ziion's trustees were to display some sense of honour and resign then maybe there could be a fresh start by people with hope, faith and the All Mighty''s assurance. To God be the glory!


Thank you Larry for your sense of concern, compassion and respect.


Bernard Firth,


Organizations: Nova Scotia Heritage Trust, Zion United Baptist Church, Canadian Bible Society

Geographic location: Pubnico, Wedgeport

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Recent comments

  • Randy Donaldson
    December 14, 2013 - 19:00

    With all due respect Bernard, if it wasn't for the closure of 3 or 4 Catholic churches around the area, St Ambrose would be suffering the exact same problems that have faced Zion.

  • Debbie Roberts
    December 14, 2013 - 15:00

    I am sorry to hear that such a comment was made by a Farmers' Market vendor. This vendor would like to assure Mr. Firth that some of us would very much like to see Zion church continue as a link to our wonderful heritage here in Yarmouth. Whether this will happen given the current state of the church, and finances, is still in question. But this vendor would love to see the church continue to stand.