An Historical Narrative
I arrived in
Our first meeting was held
After we had 30 members in the lodge we decided to talk to the Uniats to join in with us to build a church, but they were not interested. We then decided to go among the Polish people to see if we could find some White Russians. Here we met Alex Zdanuk who acquainted us with some of his Russian friends. But these people were skeptical. They said only the Czar built churches. We put up $5.00 in good faith and asked them to do so that we could start building a church and told them to pick one of their own for a Treasurer, but they were not certain and held off doing anything. When these people saw we were in the process of buying property, they finally decided to join us.
John Hamilla $100.00 George Kotrady $50.00 John Kolvek $25.00 Michael Cherpak $100.00 J. Maslar $50.00 J. Cherpak $25.00 Nicholas Cherpak $100.00 Peter Maslar $50.00 Andrew Dorin $25.00 George Hamilla $100.00 John Lazor $30.00 M. Soltis $25.00 Andrew Suchi $100.00 Ss. Cyril and Methodius Brotherhood $250.00
We had $1,030.00 in loans and elected the following first church officers: John Hamilla, Starosta; Michael Cherpak, Treasurer; Feodor Karpey, Secretary; Nicholas Cherpak, Stephen Karpey, John Martinchik, Church Committee. George Kotrady and Stephen Karpey were elected to collect 25¢ per week from each parishioner. Michael Cherpak and John Hamilla volunteered to visit
The land that was bought for the church was not to the liking of some so it was sold to Michael Cherpak and another parcel of land was bought on
On August 31, the cornerstone was laid. Divine Liturgy was held at a hall on
The church was built but the interior was empty. Rev. Turkevich sent us a plan of the iconostas, which we had made at a cost of $100.00. Feodor Karpey built of wood the analoi and candle holders. In the center of the church hung a large kerosene lamp. George Hamilla donated two banners, Peter Hamilla robes, John Hamilla darochranitelnica and white robes, and Bishop Tikhon (later St. Tikhon) donated $100.00.
When our church was nearing completion a letter was received from Duchovne Pravlenie to send a member of our church to Vladika Tikhon and John Hamilla was chosen. When Vladika greeted him he asked how many parishioners we had and was told six families and 30 to 40 single members. He asked what kind of factories we had in
In December a letter was received that if we transferred our church from Ss. Cyril and Methodius to Bishop Tikhon, we would receive a priest, so on
December 24 was a happy and festive event for us for on that day Vladika Tikhon, Archpriest Hotovitsky, with the Dean and Rev. Benedict Turkevich, came and at in the evening they celebrated Vespers. The next day our church was blessed by His Grace as he promised and our own choir sang under the leadership of Feodor Karpey. There was great joy and happiness among us in that we already had our own church, our own priest and our own choir and director.