Wesley United Church (Vancouver, BC)

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Corporate body

Authorized form of name

Wesley United Church (Vancouver, BC)

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  • Wesley Methodist Church

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Methodist services began in Vancouver, following the recorded arrival of four Methodist missionaries in the Vancouver area in 1859. The Rev. Ebenezer Robson traveled from New Westminster to hold services for six Methodists in 1865 in the Hasting Mill cookhouse. Regular services began in 1867-68 at Hasting Mill and Moodyville (North Vancouver), led by the Rev. Edward White. A parsonage was built in 1874, and a church building was constructed on Water St. in 1875. The church on Water St. is recorded to be the first church building in the City of Vancouver (known at the time as Granville). A fire destroyed this church and parsonage on June 13, 1886; however the congregation held temporary services in a hall on the site of the former church.

In 1887, the property on Water St. was sold and the congregation divided into two: Princess Street and Homer Street. By 1901, it was clear that the membership had outgrown the Homer Street church and a new foundation was laid at the corner of Georgia and Burrard Streets, with the new church to be known as Wesley Methodist. Completed and dedicated by the end of 1901, Wesley Methodist is regarded as the lineal descendent of the first Methodist Church on Water Street, and the mother of many of the Methodist Churches that later sprang up in Vancouver.

Wesley Methodist Church joined church union in June 1925, and Wesley United Church was the site of the first conference of the United Church of Canada in BC in Nov. 1925. Following church union, a joint committee of St. Andrew’s United and Wesley United Churches, along with representatives of the former First Congregational Church and St. John’s United Church, was formed to consider an amalgamation of the congregations. In June of 1927, the members of the churches took a vote, and amalgamation of the Wesley United and St. Andrew’s United Church congregations was approved. Following the June 1927 approval, the two congregations had to decide where a new church should be built. An offer to purchase the Wesley church property was made in December 1928, and the sale was approved (though the Wesley church building was used until the new church was opened in 1933), as was the purchase of property on the corner of Burrard and Nelson Streets for the new St. Andrew’s-Wesley Church.

The amalgamated congregation continued to hold services in the two churches, with morning services in St. Andrew’s United and evening services in Wesley United. The new St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church building was opened on May 26, 1933. In May 1933, the Wesley Church was renamed City Temple, as the New Presbyterians and Independent Congregationalists continued to worship in the former Methodist church building. In 1934, the new congregation was unable to meet the costs of the building and ceased worship there. In May 1934, the former (1901) Wesley Methodist Church building was torn down.


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Created August 30, 2012


  • English



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