St. Jospeh’s is two-storey wood-frame Catholic Church located on the Tk’emlups band lands in Kamloops. Built by Oblate Catholic missionaries and the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc in the late 19th century, St. Joseph’s Church is the oldest church in Kamloops. It is valued for its association with the Francophone Oblate Order, which had a far-reaching impact throughout British Columbia.
The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate came to Canada from France in 1841 to promote Christianity to Indigenous people and new settlers. While many of their contributions were celebrated in the past, they have more recently issued apologies for their role in the residential school system and for the part they played in the “cultural, ethnic, linguistic and religious imperialism” towards Indigenous people.
Today a Canadian heritage site, the church has been completely renovated, and artifacts restored, including a gold-gilded altar. St. Joseph’s Church is located on the Tk’emlups band lands.