War Memorial

The War Memorial stands at the edge of rue St. Raphael, just east of the church driveway.

Excerpt from Historical Sketch, St -Peter-on-the-Rock, compiled by Maud Pope, 1950

The unveiling was August 24th 1926. At 3.30 p.m. the procession of those taking part in the ceremony proceeded from the North door of the church to the Memorial Cross in the east end of the church property and facing the road. Mr. A. H. Campbell of Toronto who had been prominent in the erection made a short introductory speech and the Cross was then unveiled by the Right Honourable Sir Charles Fitzpatrick, G.C.M.G. and was dedicated by the Rev. F. G. Vial D.C.L. The Rev. Mr. Anderson of the Presbyterian Church then offered up a prayer. Sir Charles gave an inspiring address in which he detailed the events which brought Britain into the war on a question of honour. “This memorial”, he said, “speaks to us of something more than individual loss and individual sacrifice. It is personal in character, but it is also symbolic. It speaks of Canadians, almost 600,000 in number, enlisted for service and also of the more than 60,000 who gave their lives as the supreme sacrifice of our Canadian people to maintain the honour of our common Empire. They died that we might live a self-respecting nation, mindful of our obligations and to meet the burdens which we must now face as our soldiers did the enemy at Vimy Ridge, without flinching. More than that, they died that we might pursue our destiny as a united people.”

Unveiling of war memorial 1925

Field Marshall Sir Arthur Barrett. G.C.B., G.B.C.I ., K.C., V.O. followed Sir Charles in a short speech in which he said the unveiling reminded him of many similar ceremonies in the villages of England and hoped that the same would be done all over Canada as it would bring the people together.

The national anthem was sung and Dr. Vial pronounced the Blessing.

Amongst those present were Ex-President Taft of the U.S.A, Sir Charles Dobell. K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O., Sir Lomer Gouin. Kt., the Hon. Rodolphe Lemieux and Madame Lemieux, Lady Fitzpatrick, Surgeon Major-General Johnson, C.M., M.D., and Mrs. Johnson, Mr & Mrs. Duggan, Mrs. Gray, Rev. J. Knox Tibbits, Dr. and Madame Lapointe, Mr. and Mrs. Jos. Couturier, ¬†Archdeacon andMrs. Denison, Mrs. F. Higginson Cabot, Miss Gill, Miss Crawford. Dr. and Mrs. Vial, Mr. & Mrs. McGoun, Miss Greenshields, Miss Cassels. Mrs. Francis, Mr. & Mrs. Harold Kennedy, Mr. & Mrs. Edwin Pope, the Misses Pope, Mr & Miss Wright, Mr. & Mrs. Cundill, the Misses Cundill, Mrs. Carter, the Misses Carter, Mrs. Oliver, the Misses Johnson, Mr. & Mrs. A. H. Campbell, Mr. Anderson, Miss Hampson, Rev. Claude Silk and very many others. The inscription on the Cross reads as follows: “To the glory of God, in thanksgiving for victory in the Great War 1914-1918 and a memorial of the services rendered to King and Country by men and women of this community.”

The war memorial to those members of St. Peter’s who made the supreme sacrifice is a lovely and unusual Altar Rail: made by the firm of Birks, Montreal.

In 1983 a new plaque with a French language translation was added to the War Memorial. A dedication ceremony was conducted by Venerable Stuart Martin and Major. Rev. Dr. Donald Mackay.