By Bruce Holland, Publisher
Canadian cities and towns flourish when they have community public spaces to promote social interaction and physical activity and provide access to recreational programs and facilities. These amenities are integral to the overall well-being of individuals, families, and communities. Our economic recovery is closely linked to the vitality of our local communities and their shared spaces.
The Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Member of Parliament for Halifax West, and Andy Fillmore, Member of Parliament for Halifax, announced an investment of $387,200 through the Canada Community Revitalization Fund (CCRF) for the Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica Restoration. The announcement was made on behalf of the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for ACOA.
This funding will support much needed upgrades to the Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica, an Iconic Historic Site, right here in Halifax. The Basilica is over two hundred years old, and this investment is much needed to restore and upgrade the building.
The St. Mary’s Basilica’s outreach programs provide food, hot and cold beverages, and daily essentials to those in need. This funding will allow the Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica Foundation to install accessible washroom and other essentials so that as many people as possible can gather and benefit from these important supports.
In making the announcement the Honourable Lena Metlege Diab, Member of Parliament for Halifax West said, “For centuries, Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica has been a place where members of our community can turn for support, connection, a warm meal, and open hearts. With the funding we are announcing today, it will be able to expand its services to the people from all over Halifax and include people of all abilities and backgrounds in its events and activities. I am proud to support this project and I am thankful for everyone in our city stepping up to help people in need.”
Andy Fillmore, Member of Parliament for Halifax added, “Standing tall in the heart of Halifax, Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica is a space for all Haligonians. The support it provides through its community outreach programs is important work that supports vulnerable folks in their times of need. I am proud to be here today announcing funding to make this community space more accessible, so that anyone who needs help knows they can reach out to the Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica community for a warm meal and help to get them through tough times.”
Reverend Father John Williams, Chair of the Saint Mary’s Cathedral Restoration Foundation said,” In 2020, during the pandemic, Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica proudly but quietly celebrated its bicentennial. As we work to rejuvenate this beautiful building, we are pleased to be able to work with the Government of Canada so that we can continue to help as many people as possible enjoy a remarkable gathering space. This funding will help ensure the Basilica, an embodiment of the history of not only our city, but of our province and our country, is here as a gathering space for people of all faiths and a welcoming place for the next two hundred years. On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Foundation, I wish to offer our thanks to both MP Lena Metlege Diab and MP Andy Fillmore for their help and sharing our vision for the future of this historic treasure and an investment in service to our community.”
Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica has stood on Spring Garden Road since 1820, and in 1997 was named a National Historic Site of Canada.
Photo credits to:
Dick de Gier Photography