Welcome to Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Lanark, Ontario, a church that has ministered to the rural Roman Catholic community since it opened in 1907.
The church is currently part of a “twinned parish” which includes St. Bridget Church in Stanleyville. During the summer months services are held at St. Columbkill in McDonald’s Corners and St. Vincent de Paul in Dewitt’s Corners. The parish also includes St. Patrick in Ferguson’s Falls which does not have regularly scheduled Mass times. These are some of the oldest Catholic communities in Ontario and their graveyards contain a wealth of history about the early settlements.
Weekend Masses are held on Saturday at 5:00 PM and Sunday at 9:00 AM. During the summer months the 5:00 PM Mass is held at St. Columbkill. For complete details on weekend and daily services check our parish bulletin.
Sacred Heart of Jesus Church
86 Princess, Lanark, ON K0G 1K0
Phone: (613) 259-2155
A glimpse of our past …
In August of 1820 Lanark was established as the second military settlement in Canada. By the spring of 1821 approximately 1500 settlers, predominately Scottish weavers, were established in the community. The first Roman Catholics were from Ireland along with a large group of Catholics from French speaking Upper Canada. They would make the two day walk into Perth to attend services. Records show there were 239 Catholics in Lanark and another 45 in Dalhousie.
In 1823 St. Patrick’s Church was built in Ferguson’s Falls and the area faithful traveled the much shorter route to and from services. Finally, in 1903. the current Sacred Heart of Jesus Church was completed on Princess Street. The grey limestone building was quarried just outside Lanark and each family was responsible for drawing a certain quantity of stone to the building site. The church became the local church for the residents of Ferguson’s Falls and McDonald’s Corners, those churches becoming mission parishes of Sacred Heart.
The planning and building was directed by Father Michael O’Rourke, pastor of Carleton Place. A Mr. Webster from Brockville was the supervising builder, Mr. George Bradford of Almont directed the masonry work and Caspar S. Speagle of Westport the carpentry, all with assistance from parishioners. The total cost of construction was approximately $6,000. The local quarry was closed immediately after the church was built, make the stone color of this church unique throughout the region.
About Lanark …
The village was first settled in 1820 by Scottish immigrants who named it after the town of Lanark in Scotland. It soon became a major hub of the lumbering and textile industries, both of which used the Clyde River which runs through the village, as a source of power and as a transportation route to transport logs east to the Ottawa River.
The textile industry lasted for about 170 years.
Logging has continued, although in a much reduced manner. Wood is harvested chiefly for the pulp industry or for firewood. In 1959 a major fire destroyed many of the main commercial structures and a number of homes in the village’s centre. Most buildings were inadequately insured. Replacement buildings are highly functional in their design. The village has the Lanark and District Museum featuring exhibits of local history.
Until the late 1990s, the major employer in the village was the Glenayr Kitten Mill, which produced clothing and offered their products at several factory outlet stores in the village. Several of the buildings are still known by their numbers (e.g. Kitten Factory #1) to local residents. The Clyde Woolen Mills was the founder of these properties