The White Church (Part 3)
This church, dedicated to Pope St Pius X, erected 1956 to the Glory of God and in memory of Padre Magin Catala, OFM, first missionary to Friendly Cove, 1793 and in memory of the historic meeting of Capt. George Vancouver, RN and Commander Bodega Y Quadra of the Spanish Navy in Friendly Cove, 1792, and the Nootka Convention Treaty, was sponsored by His Excellency, Bishop James M. Hill of Victoria, directed by the Rev. F. Miller OMI Parish Priest, assisted by Rev. T. Lobsinger OMI with the approval and assistance of Chief Ambrose Maquinna and his band at Friendly Cove.
The historic meeting and treaty mentioned on the plaque were the result of a crisis in 1789, fueled by a hot-tempered Spaniard named Martinez. The story goes something like this:
The church/museum feels lonely this time of year. Come summer, when hikers hit the Nootka Trail and the Uchuck III begins its tours from Gold River, it will fill occasionally with curious tourists. The old buildings have sunk into the moss, and the people have all but gone. I wish I could hear them...singing, dancing, laughing, explaining what all of this means, and telling their story of this place.