Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of June 12, 2006
Ukrainian parish to get church building
The Exaltation of the Holy Cross Ukrainian Church will be ready in 2007
By RAMON GONZALEZ
WCR Staff Writer
Almost 27 years after it was established, The Exaltation of the Holy Cross Ukrainian Catholic Parish is finally building a proper place of worship for its 278 families.
For the past 18 years the parish has been operating in a multipurpose facility at 9003-153 Ave.
"We have a hall that has been used as a church and now we feel that it is time to have a proper house of God," said pastor Don Bodnar.
Sod turning ceremonies for the new building, which is being erected northwest of the hall, were held May 27.
Former Eparchial Bishop Lawrence Huculak, now the metropolitan of Ukrainian Canadians and archbishop of Winnipeg, blessed the event.
The new church will hold almost 500 parishioners and will feature a large choir loft and balcony, stained glass windows, a crying room, a banquet hall and several meeting rooms.
The church should be completed in the spring of 2007 and, according to Bodnar, its traditional Western Ukrainian design and signature roofline will create a cultural and spiritual landmark for the area.
The total cost of the facility will be close to $2.5 million.
About $700,000 has already been raised through direct contributions, pledges, sponsorships, perogy suppers, special events featuring dinners and silent auctions , raffles, 50/50 draws and garage sales.
The Community Facility Enhancement Program provided an additional $80,000 for renovations to the current hall.
Holy Cross began as a parish without a home some 27 years ago "but the dream was always to have a church proper," Bodnar said.
"So we figured that now with the growth of our parish, we've come to that point where we are ready to have and build a proper church.
"So now we'll have the church and we'll have a hall."
Parishioners worshipped in various facilities, including the chapel of Newman Theological College and Dickinsfield Junior High School, before they built their current hall in 1988.
But the facility, which can seat up to 300 people, is not practical.
"If I have a wedding, I can either have the church service or the reception; we can't do both because the facility is too small," lamented Bodnar.
"Once the church is completed, we will be able to do the wedding ceremony and then have the reception at the hall next door."
A country fair to raise funds for the new church will be held on the parish grounds June 24 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
It'll feature Ukrainian dancers, music, a petting zoo, magic acts, perogies and kubasa.
The event is free and will conclude with an evening dinner and dance at the hall.
Tickets for the dance are $25. Phone 476-2982 for tickets.