Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Kamsack dom sold for yoga

184 Queen Elizabeth Blvd.

The Independent Doukhobor dom [meeting hall] in Kamsack, Saskatchewan, is being sold this month, March 2017, which is about 62 years since it was constructed. Satellite map.

The sale was expected to be final this week, said Fred Konkin of Pelly, chair of the society.

Val Ritchie from Yorkton is buying the building where she will be holding her yoga classes in Kamsack.
Konkin cited an aging congregation, now numbering fewer than 20, and the rising costs of maintaining such a building. He said the building had been kept up through membership fees and donations.

'The Kamsack Society of Independent Doukhobors will continue, much like they do in Benito and Pelly, we just won’t have a building,' he said, adding that members will be using other Doukhobor meeting halls, most likely the one in Veregin for meetings services, at the National Doukhobor Heritage Village, 8 miles west.

Konkin explained that the building has been emptied of its effects, such as pictures, and were moved to Veregin. 'It’s sad,' said Lydia Cherkas, a member. 'Our forefathers were active and Doukhobor families spread all over Canada. The belief remains, but the numbers are dwindling.'

A 60th anniversary was celebrated here on December 13, 2015, when Mike Chutskoff of Kamsack, the only living member of the society who had volunteered time during the construction of the building, had the honour of cutting an anniversary cake.

'The Society of Doukhobors of Kamsack and District opened its new [meeting hall], valued at $15,000 in an impressive but brief opening ceremony on June 22, 1955,' said an item in the Kamsack Times. The ceremonies climaxed more than 11 months of toil by volunteer labourers and a final rush week of putting the finishing touches to a project which had been conceived 42 months earlier, it said. The opening began with a ... meeting service led by N.W. Cazakoff and emcee for the event had been William Chutskoff, chair of the building committee.

Edited from: Kamsack Doukhobor Society sells its prayer home, Kamsack Times, March 20, 2017.

Koozma: I object to the word 'prayer' used 7 times in this article. Q44: 'Community Centre' or 'Prayer House'? Do Doukhobors meet in a 'Community/ Cultural Centre' or 'Prayer House'?

Also see: Doukhobors celebrate 60th anniversary of Kamsack Prayer Home, Kamsack Times, January 12, 2016.

Update 2021 April 19

In 2018 the building was converted to a dental clinic. Jon Kalmakoff posted a history. From 970 members in 1918, to less than 20 active members in 2017.

[Photo] Staff of the new River Valley Dental clinic on opening day. Kamsack Times, October 17, 2018, page 1.

Kamsack Doukhobor Prayer Home, 1955-2017, by Jonathan Kalmakoff, Facebook: Doukhobors in Canada, February 5, 2021.