Legacy of Faith - Église Saint Bernard - Saint Bernard, NS
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 44° 24.011 W 066° 02.793
19T E 735195 N 4920565
Quick Description: Given the size of this church we shouldn't wonder that it required thirty two years to complete.
Location: Nova Scotia, Canada
Date Posted: 3/18/2017 2:40:07 AM
Waymark Code: WMV99E
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member fi67
Views: 2

Long Description:
It's not that it's that big, so much as that the parish chose not to incur debt with the building of their new Gothic Revival church, so it can then be seen that it required 32 years to acquire the funds to pay for the building.

Built predominately of local granite (quarried near Shelburne, about 135 road kilometres to the southeast), Saint Bernard was doubtless an expensive church to build. The outside walls contain upwards of 8,000 granite blocks and several tonnes of mortar. The inside walls required 96 tonnes of plaster in two coats over wooden laths. The top coat was roughed and scored to simulate stones.

Built in the shape of a cross, with transepts on either side at the rear, Saint Bernard has matching towers at the front with crenelated tops and straight stone spires at each corner. Windows in the towers are tall and narrow, matching the windows in the rest of the building. All windows are Gothic arched with heavy tracery at the top. The sanctuary itself is very tall, with lower aisles on each side between towers and transepts. To get an appreciation of the detail in the stonework peruse the photos below.

In front of the church is a plaque on a small lectern which tells, in French and English, of the construction of the church. One interesting point the plaques brings to light is the fact that the church has extraordinary, concert hall quality, acoustics. As a result many world class artists have performed here. Open to visitors May 1 to Oct 30, the church hosts the Musique Saint-Bernard concert series throughout the summer months.

The plaque is part of the Acadian Shores Interpretive Tour. Text from the plaque follows.

Legacy of Faith

This magnificent stone church took 32 years to build. Large
granite blocks were shipped 120 miles by train from Shelburne.
Ox teams then hauled them to this site where they were
painstakingly cut and laid by hand, one row per year
(1910-1942).

There are upwards of 8000 blocks of granite and several tonnes of
cement in the outside walls. The inside walls required 96 tonnes
of plaster, of which two coats were applied over wooden laths.

With Acadian ingenuity, the last coat was roughed up with a
wooden trowel and scored to simulate stone. This had to be
completed before the plaster hardened, limiting this operation to
20 minutes!

Saint Bernard Church is a living example of what a small group of
dedicated farmers, fishermen and lumbermen were able to
accomplish in spite of having very few resources.
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Group that erected the marker: Acadian Shores Interpretive Tour

URL of a web site with more information about the history mentioned on the sign: [Web Link]

Address of where the marker is located. Approximate if necessary:
3623 Highway 1
Saint Bernard, NS Canada
B0W 1M0


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