125th Anniversary of the Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes Parish
This virtual exhibition illustrates the importance of the role Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes parish plays in the development of the Vanier Francophone community.
There was a time when the social life of French Canadians revolved mainly around the parish to which they belonged. Rightly or wrongly, this social structure peculiar to Francophones, almost exclusively Catholic, has greatly contributed to cementing and developing the social bonds of minority communities (English-speaking majority in Ontario). The history of Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes parish is a good example, since it is the oldest Francophone Catholic parish in Vanier. Today incorporated into the city of Ottawa, Vanier has long been considered a bastion of the Francophonie in Ontario.
Founded by the Montfort Fathers on August 4, 1887, the parish of Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes was designed to prevent residents of Janeville (Vanier) from traveling long distances to the church on the Ottawa side. The presbytery settled on the road to Montreal in a house known as Tara Hall, a former hotel and brothel.
The construction of the church began in the summer of 1887 and will last one year. Several parish priests will succeed, including the parish priest Edmond Ducharme who will occupy this position from 1932 to 1953 and will play an important role in the field of education.
On May 28, 1973, a fire destroyed the almost century-old church. The material losses amount to $ 800,000, an astronomical sum for the time. A new church is built in the same place, much smaller and multifunctional. It opens these doors for the midnight mass of 1975.