St. Matthew’s Anglican Church was built between 1929-30 as the Great Depression ravaged Canada. Its architect, Cecil Burgess, celebrated the beauty of English ecclesiastical architecture in his design. His use of stone, metal and wood in the construction of the church was informed by his early childhood roots in England, as was the cruciform plan of the modified English Gothic exterior. In his 1988 book “A Church in the Glebe,” historian David Farr noted that “Cecil Burgess chose Indiana limestone for the church and the adjoining parish hall ... there were hand carved oak pews in the nave ... most of the millwork for the building was carried out at the yard and planing mill of G.T. Barrett, a mile to the north on Bank Street.” Two stained-glass windows, one over the altar and one over the Glebe Street entrance, were transferred from the earlier church building that had stood at the corner of First Avenue and Bank Street. Twelve additional stained-glass windows were subsequently added to the nave walls. Hanging on the pillars of the nave are 20 original icons by Heinrich (Heiko) Schlieper (1931-2008) that depict the Passion of Christ. Extensive renovations to the church were launched in 2005 to ensure its structural integrity. Financed by a fundraising campaign, the project earned St. Matthew’s a 2008 Ottawa Architectural Conservation Certificate of Merit. The building has been recognized as a historical city landmark. As part of Digital Doors Open, be sure to explore this church through the video below.
- Digital Doors Open
Contact info130 Glebe Avenue
ArchitectureYear built: 1929-30
Architect: Cecil Burgess
Building type: Place of worship
Dates/hours openFriday January 1 – Friday December 31, 2021
Part of Digital Doors Open Ottawa