Does a deacon haunt the oldest remaining Protestant cathedral in Canada?
While there have been many tall tales and spun yarns surrounding the tragic 1917 explosion of a munitions ship in Halifax, even some of the more farfetched stories have physical evidence to help back them up.
One cathedral’s eerie window silhouette is a good – yet macabre – example.
The province of Nova Scotia proudly calls it “The Ghost Window” on its tourism attractions section of its website.
At the time of the explosion, the deacon of St. Paul’s Church, an evangelical Anglican church currently located in Halifax’ town square, is said to have been standing directly parallel to a second-floor window.
The story goes that the heat and power of the explosion broke the window in the shape of the clergyman, or he was blown through the window. His profile was forever etched into the glass, as a haunting silhouette.
Some say that even when the window is replaced, the silhouette comes back. That the reflection of the deacon returns to watch over the town.
St. Paul’s Church is the oldest building in Halifax and the oldest surviving Protestant church in Canada. It was founded in 1749.
While the church is located several kilometres from the explosion, the blast was one of the largest man-made explosions of all time before the atom bomb. Some effects of it were even felt as far away as Prince Edward Island.
Other scars this Halifax church bore from the explosion include blown out windows and cracking in the roof. Additionally, a piece of window frame from another building was embedded into the wall above the entryway. It remains there today with a plaque saying it is a “relic of the explosion.”
Another haunting element of St. Paul’s Church is that it includes a crypt, housing the remains of some 20 historical and famous congregants.
Whether you believe in ghosts or not, the window is certainly mysterious.