'The king is being crowned again': Crowd gathers to watch St. Annes Church raise its steeple

On a chilly Tuesday morning, about 100 parishioners gathered to watch something they waited 10 years to see: St. Annes Parish place its steeple.

About 100 people gathered and cheered as they watch the spire be placed

A crowd gathered at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning to watch as a giant crane lifted St. Anne's refurbished steeple atop its tower. (Kaitie Fraser/CBC)

On a chilly Tuesday morning, about 100 parishioners gathered in Tecumseh to watch something they've waited 10 years to see — St. Anne's Church restore its steeple. 

"We're feeling very excited, very excited to see this historical moment," said Father Eugene Roy, who said he blessed the spire at Sunday Mass. "What's particularly impressed me in all of this is not just the fact that it's a wonderful event, but it's to see the craftsmanship that has gone into the restoration of the work to the steeple and the church."

The Tecumseh church has been an icon in the area for over a century. The parish was first established in 1859, and the building was erected in 1873. About ten years ago, the decision was made to fix the church's spire which was badly damaged by wood rot.

Chris Kelly was at the church with her granddaughter 10 years ago when the steeple came down for repairs.

"It is unbelievably awesome," she said Tuesday, shivering with cold but excited for the final moment. "It's a really good feeling to know it's going to be back where it belongs."

The enhancement project cost a total of about $2.5 million, which was funded mostly through a large donation by philanthropist Al Quesnel.

Repairing and raising the spire alone cost about $650,000.

Parishioners clapped and cheered despite the cold, as they watched crews secure the spire. 

"It's like the king is being crowned again," said Roy.