Original Building: Methodist Church
The Whitevale Church is one of the major focal points of present-day Whitevale. It was built to replace the Canadian Methodist Chapel (built in 1854 by T.P. White) which was located behind the present-day cemetery.
The Whitevale Church was one of at least three churches in the village (a Baptist Church and a Christian Church are depicted in a historical sketch of the town). The Whitevale Church was originally built in 1884 as a Methodist Church and had its Church Dedication in February 1885 with “congregations overflowing”. The church later converted to become Whitevale United Church in 1925 with a total congregation of 106 members recorded in 1929.
Following the announcement by the Ontario Government in 1972 threatening expropriation for a new airport, many of the congregation moved away. In 2009-2010, the United Church Presbytery put the church up for sale and the Whitevale community came together to try and raise funds to keep the heritage church as part of the community. The community of Whitevale was unable to come up with the funds to purchase the church and feared for its future. Luckily, the church was purchased and was converted to an Orthodox Church.
Architecture of the Whitevale Church
By Gordon Zimmerman
The Whitevale United Church was built as a Methodist church and completed in 1885 at a time of vigorous church building in Ontario. It remains virtually unaltered as a very good example of Gothic Revival architecture.
Local individualistic touches were expressed in the corbelled brick decoration in the gables and over the windows, the diminutive bell cotes, and the bold mix of stone and polychrome brick.
On the interior, the hammer-beam arches over the nave are both structural and decorative, in keeping with English tradition. They likely contributed to the superb acoustical properties of the space.
Practicality, tradition and fashion meet most satisfyingly in the stained glass lancet windows; they are restrained, non-figurative, yet decorative and beautiful.