STRAIT AREA: The public is invited to explore Cape Breton’s heritage through its religious buildings, in a free, self-guided tour of 19 Richmond and Inverness County churches.

Heritage Trust of Nova Scotia’s Places of Worship Committee is coordinating a “Doors Open” event in cooperation with Roman Catholic and Protestant churches. Local congregation members will welcome visitors on Saturday, September 9 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sunday, September 10 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. (in a few exceptions, hours will be more limited).

The churches include: St. Margaret of Scotland in Broad Cove; St. Matthew’s in Inverness; St. John’s in Strathlorne; St. Mary’s in Mabou; St. Peter’s in Port Hood; St. Joseph’s in Glencoe Mills; Forbes United Church in River Denys; St. Margaret of Scotland in Glendale; Princeville United Church; St. Margaret’s in West Bay Road; Stella Maris in Creignish; Black River United Church; Our Lady of Assomption in Arichat; St. John’s Anglican Church in Arichat; St. Joseph’s in Petit de Grat; Sacred Heart in Johnstown; and Calvin Presbyterian in Loch Lomond.

Pictured is Sacred Heart Church in Johnstown.

Places of worship are becoming endangered, especially in rural Nova Scotia. While most are still well used, some of these buildings are no longer in active use for worship, yet they represent a significant community resource that was highly valued by early settlers. A few will find new purposes in the future. Please come on out to celebrate these markers of history and culture.

The Heritage Trust of Nova Scotia, founded in 1959, is a non-profit registered charity whose goal is to conserve buildings and sites of historic significance, and to promote this important cultural component of Nova Scotia’s identity. Among its activities, the trust prepares educational material, including books, publishes a quarterly, and hosts a series of lectures which are free and open to the public.

For more information, visit:, on Twitter check out: @HTNovaScotia and the trust is on Facebook at:

St. Joseph’s church in Petit de Grat will host public tours.