For photos of the build, click on the image below:
Help The Paish of Historic St. Aidan Orthodox Church
Click on the image above to donate to our gofundme fundraiser!
The original budget for completion was +/- $700,000. Despite our small size, God blessed us, and we raised $840,000 in funds through donations ($380,000), grants ($230,000) and a mortgage ($230,000).
However, there was a dramatic 40% inflationary increase in costs throughout the construction industry since we began, and we are experiencing this difference first-hand. We had a cost increase of $350,000 to complete our building project above our $700,000 budget (now: $1,050,000 total) and exhausted all our building funds. With the help of loans from friends and family, we were able to complete the build in September 2023, but now have a huge debt load to pay back.
We are therefore reaching out to you, our friends and family, and brothers and sisters in Christ for help!
If you are willing and able to help with this gofundme fundraiser, we would be most grateful!
Thank you for your prayers and donations, they are most appreciated!
St. Aidan Orthodox Church is one of the only Orthodox Churches in the British Columbia Interior and Calgary Alberta – 400k from us – is our closest Canadian Orthodox Church neighbor. Located in sunny Cranbrook, BC, we attract many people of different Orthodox backgrounds (Greek, Ukrainian, Russian, Romanian, Egyptian, Lebanese, Ethiopian, etc.) as well as many non-ethnic people who are new to Orthodoxy. Our church building is the historic former Ukrainian Church built in 1952, and is not accessible. We have members of our parish who have difficulty accessing our spaces, and we would like to be accessible for the community as well.
In 2021, we received a CERIP grant from the BC govt. to install an elevator, interior connecting stairs, and an accessible bathroom so we did some preliminary work – moving underground pipes, rezoning the lot, developing engineering and architect plans, etc. In May of 2022 we began construction on the addition to accommodate the elevator/ stairs/ new handicapped bathroom etc. We gutted the interior to re-position the Altar and the main entrance, expand the kitchen, add a children’s education and overflow loft, etc. By August we had the foundation poured and the framing begun. We are now at the lock-up stage and working on the interior of the building.
Eisenhower Woodworks, at eisenhauer.build, has done an amazing job with the addition, and interior stairs, etc. Almost the opposite from all modern-day church renovations; they are bringing it back to be more in line with ancient traditional Orthodox Church spaces, inspired by the centuries-old Slavic and Byzantine style Churches. Our own volunteers have been working hard on the Altar area and barrel ceiling. The crew of volunteers spent many afternoons and several weekends at the church from the fall of 2022 on. Earlier they bent and glued the wood for the 20 altar arches. They all say that it is a blessing to be a part of this build. We have been blessed to be able to work closely with the monks at Holy Transfiguration Hermitage, who are consulting and assisting with the design of the worship space, and Fr. Moses is painting the main icons!
Read Father Andrew’s “building” sermon here:
We Can Build It – Together!
The cost of construction since we first estimated the cost of the project back in 2021, and in particular over the first 6 months of 2023 have risen dramatically. The entire construction industry has seen costs increase by at least 40% in the trades. Two years ago a house could be built for +/- $3.00/sq. ft. Today that same house will cost +/- $4.50 per sq. ft. to build. We now find ourselves with about a $350,000 cost increase over our estimates. (From =+/-$700,000 to $105,000.) This is common to all construction projects started in the years since COVID-19. The majority of our building fund has come from faithful parishioners, but we have been blessed to receive grant money from a small mortgage with Community Futures, a grant from the BC Govt. and a Heritage BC, CERIP grant.
As committed Orthodox Christians we have faith that God has blessed this God-pleasing work for His purposes, and God will certainly see that it is completed. To this end we are reaching out to you in case He may be keeping it in your bank accounts until needed!
Please consider this as a wonderful investment opportunity in God’s work! As Christians we understand that God has entrusted us with wealth to use for His purposes and for our salvation; (Matt. 6:19-21) “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth not rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will be your heart also.”
If you would like to sponsor a particular component of our build, perhaps as a memorial for a loved one, we have a number of opportunities. We need bathroom fixtures, a relocated Altar and iconostas, flooring throughout the building, windows, doors, lights, etc. Our Breakfast Program is expanding and we need a bigger kitchen appliances … Any donation of any size is greatly appreciated and of course supporting God’s work in any way is always a solid investment, paying eternal dividends. (Matt: 6:19-21). As Christ made clear with the widow’s mite, the benefit to our souls is less related to the size of our offering than to the sacrifice involved, and is of more benefit to us than to whatever project we might be supporting!
Please give Fr. Andrew a call to discuss how you might be able to contribute at 250-420-1582 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You can e-transfer to email@example.com , noting the item you would like to be bought in your name. If you would like to pay with a credit card, use our donation button https://www.saintaidan.ca/donate/ and note the item and your contact information. You will of course receive a charitable tax donation for any donation you make.
We thank you for your prayers and help. May God bless you!
Feast Day Donations
Feast Day Donations:
We also have donations made on people’s Feast Days, in their saint’s name. Pay by credit card with our donate button https://www.saintaidan.ca/donate/ or send an e-transfer donation to firstname.lastname@example.org , marking them both for someone you love in their saint’s name, and include your contact information for a tax receipt.