Historic Sites of Manitoba: Zion Methodist Church / Roland United Church (Roland, RM of Roland)
Roland’s first church, Grace Methodist, was built between 1889 and 1890 on this site in the Rural Municipality of Roland, opening with Rev. A. Gordon as first minister. The wood frame structure was destroyed by fire in February 1912, despite efforts of a fire brigade carrying buckets of water from local wells. The managed to save the pump organ. The community promptly erected the present church at a cost of $30,000, with design done by the Winnipeg architectural firm of James Chisholm and Son. The cornerstone for Zion Methodist Church was laid by the minister’s wife, Mrs. J. E. Lane, on Easter Sunday in 1913.
This church, and part of Knox Presbyterian Church, joined together on 2 August 1925 to become Roland United Church with Rev. B. W. Allison serving as minister. Stained glass windows in the church, installed in 1961 in memory of James H. Lytle, were designed by Leo Mol. They depicted the union of the Methodist, Presbyterian, and Congregational churches. Designated as a municipal heritage building in 1997, it was de-designated in 1999.
The church closed in the 2010s as the congregation moved to a modern building nearby. The building was sold to a local resident who, in turn, sold it to a real estate developer. Between 2016 and 2017, the building was renovated into twelve residential condominiums.
Photos & Coordinates
1911 Canada census, Automated Genealogy.
“Rowland divine dies suddenly,” Winnipeg Tribune, 4 January 1918, page 15.
Trails of the Pioneers: Records, Accounts, Historical Data Centred on the Town of Roland, Manitoba by George H. Hambley, 1956, pages 174-208.
Roland United Church, Manitoba Historic Resources Branch.
“Roland Church Lofts truly a labour of love,” Winnipeg Free Press, 10 June 2017, page F14.
We thank Nathan Kramer, Michael Wood, Luke Wiebe, Rose Kuzina, and George Penner for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 27 May 2022