Over 100-year-old former Roman Catholic church burnt to the ground northwest of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

A former Polish Roman Catholic church near Redberry Lake, Saskatchewan was burnt to the ground on Thursday, July 8, 2021, on the heels of dozens of churches across Canada being burnt to the ground and vandalized.

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In recent weeks, dozens of churches across Canada have been vandalized and burnt to the ground following the discovery by ground-penetrating radar of unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools.

The rural area “landmark” church near Redberry Lake, Saskatchewan was seen from afar on fire on Thursday afternoon, the Saskatoon StarPhoenix reported.

Lynn Swystun, a resident in the area, saw the smoke coming from the church while she was cutting her lawn. 

When Lynn Swystun went to investigate the source of the smoke, she found the former Catholic church on fire.

Lynn Swystun
told the Saskatoon StarPhoenix that “I didn’t get very far from home, then I realized it was our landmark church that was burning,”

“It wasn’t a church that was used, but it was a landmark for us.”

Swystun and other residents from the nearby area said that the church had been there for more than 100 years. A plaque on the church said it was in use from 1909 to 1985. 

Swystun told the Saskatoon StarPhoenix that the church is “not going to be rebuilt,” and that “It’s really, really sad. In light of everything that’s going on in the country, it’s just a little bit suspicious.”

Swystun said that it appeared to her when she got to the scene that the fire began inside of the church and not nearby.

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