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Vandals deface Father Lacombe Chapel

The spirit of the season appears to have been lost on vandals who brazenly defaced the front façade of Alberta’s oldest building. Sometime before church services on Nov.
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The spirit of the season appears to have been lost on vandals who brazenly defaced the front façade of Alberta’s oldest building.

Sometime before church services on Nov. 29 someone threw black paint across the front entrance of the Father Lacombe Chapel Provincial Historic Site on Mission Hill. The paint splatter did not appear to follow any specific pattern.

Ray Pinco, chair of the St. Albert Historical Society said when he spotted the paint Sunday morning he was frustrated to see such an important part of the community’s history damaged so senselessly.

“When a historical building like that is damaged it is really disappointing,” he said.

The chapel was the first building constructed in St. Albert when settlers arrived in the 1860s. Father Albert Lacombe rallied the first settlers to build the chapel and it became the first building and founding point of the city. Lacombe’s body is buried at the site.

While other communities had sprung up prior to St. Albert, none of their original buildings still stand.

“Father Lacombe Chapel is the oldest building standing anywhere in Alberta,” said Pinco.

The building has had much restoration work done on it over the years and is a recognized provincial historic site. The paint splatter has since been covered up after provincial officials were on scene inspecting the damage early last week.

Anyone with any information about the vandalism is asked to call the St. Albert RCMP detachment or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.




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