Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Entrepreneur transforms Anglican church in Chapleau into community hub

From Canada-

As church congregations continue to dwindle across northern Ontario, the question of what to do with old church buildings is a growing concern.

Some get bought and repurposed into residential homes, while others are recreated as music halls.

National Trust Canada, a national charity that works to save old buildings, estimates that 9,000 religious spaces in Canada will be shuttered, sold or demolished in the next decade. That's roughly one-third of all faith-owned buildings in the country.

But there is hope for one such church in Chapleau.

Entrepreneur Jason Rioux grew up in Chapleau and now lives in Toronto. He bought St. John's Anglican Church in Chapleau in 2016, and has helped to transform it into a community hub.

"I wanted to see something positive happen in town," Rioux told CBC Up North. "I'm 40 years old now and I have been away from my hometown for a long time. I've been working away from the town now for 20 years, but I still go home. My parents still live there, my grandmother is there."

More here-

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