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St. John's Anglican Church

For nearly two and a half centuries, St. John's Church has stood proudly as a spiritual and architectural anchor in the heart of UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. But, with the devastating fire on November 1, 2001, a new chapter in St. JohnÕs long history began.

St. John's is Canada's second oldest Protestant church and was undeniably one of the country's most outstanding examples of Carpenter Gothic architecture, wherein features traditionally rendered in stone are interpreted in wood. Designations as a Provincial Heritage Property (1982) and a National Historic Site (1994) are further testament to its unique value. It is an important part of the urban fabric of Old Town Lunenburg, which is both a National Historic Site of Canada and a UNESCO World Heritage Site (1995). In 2004 the World Monument Watch Fund listed St. John's as one of the 100 Most Endangered Sites in the world

The evolution of the architecture of the Church building is intricately woven into the rich tapestry of the Town of Lunenburg. From the first days of the simple Meeting House structure in 1754, a section of which remains, to the addition of side aisles in 1892, the architecture of this church spoke of the evolution of an immigrant town - first struggling simply to establish a presence in the New World, then thanking God for blessings of safety and prosperity through the expansion of an increasingly majestic building.

As the social history of the Town evolved, St. John's remained at the center of daily life and of major historical events. The building is awash with centuries of human experience - experience that has shaped and been shaped by the history of its community, its province, its country. Like other National Historic Sites, St. John's Church is a testament to the human spirit that forged Canadian society. Through painstaking preservation and restoration of this magnificent landmark, the march of centuries that has been the life of this Church, can continue.

The church building is much beloved by its congregation and community because of its great character and its longstanding focal place. Its history is as old as the community itself.

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The World Monuments Fund

This year, 2004, The World Monuments Fund (WMF), the foremost private, nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the historic, artistic, and architectural heritage of humankind, has chosen St. John's to be included on the Worlds Monuments Watch list of 100 Most Endangered Sites.

The biennial Watch list is a call to action on behalf of threatened cultural-heritage monuments worldwide. By bringing the sites to international attention, the list helps to raise the Funds needed for their rescue and often spurs local governments and communities to take an active role in protecting cultural icons in their regions

American Express is the founding sponsor of the World Monuments Watch program. WMF President Bonnie Burnham states, 'The World Monuments Watch program identifies a stunning range of endangered sites and brings them to the attention of the public, preservation professionals, and local governments. By working to preserve these treasures, WMF and its partners are helping to save for future generations the structures and places that tell us who we are. Be it a palace, a cave painting, an archaeological site, or a town, the sites on the Watch list speaks of human aspirations and achievements. To lose any one of them would diminish us all. The World Monuments Fund is particularly grateful to American Express for enabling it to continue this important work.'

Recognition of the significance of St. John' by World Monuments Watch is testament to its inestimable value. It will assist greatly as the painstaking restoration continues and is devising a strategy for preservation of this cherished legacy.

We sincerely thank all those who have supported this project with monetary and voluntary efforts.Thank you!

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