Religious Groups and Places of Worship
Having a place of worship or a religious group to connect with can be an important source of support for you as a newcomer to Canada. This support can be both spiritual and cultural. Also, being part of a religious organization can help you integrate into your community.
Christianity has been the dominant religion in PEI since the arrival of European colonists in the 16th century. There is a whole spectrum of Christian denominations represented on the Island. However, with more newcomers to Canada settling in PEI, there is a broader diversity of organized religious groups present. [See Related Resources]
With rural population declining in numbers, and less people regularly attending religious services, many Island communities have difficulty maintaining their churches. Some of the buildings had to be torn down. Some have been decommissioned, restored through community or private efforts and turned into concert and theatre venues, or homes.
Religious Groups and the Island Community
It is important to mention that religious groups in PEI often engage in initiatives and actions beyond attending religious services. Many put together committees or form organizations that help community development, take charitable actions or work on issues of social justice, on the Island and beyond, often reaching other continents -- wherever help is needed. Many times those activities benefit people from various cultural and religious backgrounds.
Several such groups have been sponsoring refugee families and helping them come to Canada and start a new life here in PEI. Many times they have helped reunite families separated by trouble in their countries of origin.
Churches also frequently offer their facilities to non-religious groups. Churches and church halls are often used for community gatherings and meetings, concerts, etc.