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St. Mary's Ukranian Catholic Church


At the turn of the 20th Century, migrating Ukrainians were attracted to job opportunities at the Steel Mill in Sault Ste. Marie. By 1916, a Ukrainian Community had been established in the Bayview area -walking distance from the Steel Mill. This hard working and faithful group initiated the construction of a Church even though they were without a regular priest. Others from the Polish, Croatian, Italian, French and English communities joined to help. The Church at 118 Pittsburgh Street was completed in 1917 and was shared with the Roman Catholic Community for 24 years until the first permanent priest, Father Chorny, arrived in 1942.

In the early 1950's, another major wave of Ukrainian immigrants started to arrive and the local Catholic parish began to flourish. The parish grew to approximately 90 families and was always one of the busiest places in Sault Ste. Marie. The local parish community hosted many suppers and dances, picnics and other events to raise funds for the needs of the Church. Sunday afternoon as well as concerts for such occasions as Taras Shevchenko Day. Children attended Ukrainian language school, learned the art of Ukrainian dance, and studied their religion very hard under the supervision of the Ukrainian sisters of Christian Charity who came to the Sault every summer.

The women of the parish joined the Ukrainian Catholic Women's League of Canada in 1956. The women have been the backbone of St. Mary's ever since its founding and continue to be the major support of the parish to this very day. Without the love of their Church and their self-sacrifice, St. Mary's would never have been able to celebrate its Diamond Jubilee in 1992. Indeed our heartfelt gratitude goes out to each and every one.