Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 24, 2007
Exaltation of the Holy Cross finally opens its doors
After 30 years of faith and hard work, the Ukrainian Catholic parish has a church
By RAMON GONZALEZ
- Photo supplied
A traditional Byzantine icon wall captures the church's spiritual heritage.
"It was a very special day because parishioners have been working so hard for (nearly) 30 years to build a proper church and it's finally done."
Construction of the new facility began in May 2006 under Father Don Bodnar and was completed this month at a cost of $2.7 million.
About $900,000 has been raised in the last three-and-a-half years through direct contributions, pledges, sponsorships, perogy suppers, special events featuring dinners and silent auctions, raffles, 50/50 draws and garage sales.
The Knights of Columbus is helping to raise the remainder.
"It's incredible the amount of work, the fundraising, that has been done by the parishioners," Faryna said.
"There has been a lot of dedication by a lot of people here."
Holy Cross began as a parish without a home some 28 years ago, but the dream was always to have a church.
Parishioners worshipped in various facilities, including the chapel of Newman Theological College and Dickinsfield Junior High School, before they built the multipurpose hall in 1988.
But the facility, which could only seat up to 300 people, was not practical. If there was a wedding, the parish could only host the church service or the reception - not both because the facility was too small.
Now the wedding ceremony can be held in the church and then the reception take place at the hall next door.
Attached to the hall are a new Sunday school room, a new boardroom and a drop-in centre for seniors and youth.
"If anything (the new church) helps legitimize the community," Faryna said. "They have been working so hard as a parish for such a long time now to have a church proper to come and worship in."
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