St. Philip’s – Assumption of the B.V.M. (closed)
Church of the Assumption of the B.V.M. constructed 1917, 3 miles east of St. Philips; R.M. 301.
ST. PHILIPS (St. Phillips) — The church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the second church of the parish.
The first parish church was constructed in 1907 and was placed under the patronage of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Bishop Nicetas Budka blessed this church in 1913; in 1916 it was destroyed by fire. Remaining on this site is the parish’s first cemetery where 38 parishioners were solemnly laid to rest. The second church was constructed in 1917 and was visited by Archbishop Basil Ladyka in 1932.
The church stands on a four acre forested site three miles east of St. Philips. Its architectural design is that of a wood constructed cruciform church measuring 54 x 34 feet with a low concrete basement, a shingled gable roof and a large central dome. Metal crosses project above the summits of the gable roofs on all four sides of the church structure; the cross above the main entrance is more intricately designed than the rest. The large white sheet metal covered dome is apexed by a cupola and cross and dominates the site rising high above the treetops. The exterior and interior walls of the church, including the drum of the dome, have narrow wood (v-joint) siding and contain rectangular windows with arched summits. As in other churches of similar architectural style, the central dome is supported by four arcades reinforced by pilasters and dominates the central area of the church illuminating the interior with sunlight. The church is east-west oriented; the sanctuary, main altar and sacristies are found in the east wing while the choir loft extends partially over the west wing of the nave. The church contains wooden pews seating approx. 80 persons; it has central coal heating and candle lighting. Construction of the church took place during the pastorate of Rev. Louis Van den Bosch, CSSR, and was carried out by the Semeniuk brothers. The parishioners covered the construction costs, which totalled $4,000, and also purchased the four acre site in 1917 through their collective funds.
Near the church stands a wooden belfry; adjacent to it and in continuation of the church property lies the parish cemetery.
Ukrainian settlement in this area began in 1904 from the village of Ivanivka in the Terebovlya county. The founding members of the parish were: VasyF Fedoryshyn, Mykhaylo Wiwchar, Semen Palyukh (Pa-luck), Pnt. Swerhun, Yatsko Yakubchak, 01. Wonitowy, Nyk. Ivachevsky (Ewacheski), Hr. Husak, Yurko Ka-shuba, Iv. Pelechaty, Pylyp Barabash, Nyk. Babiy, Zakhar Baluk, Gresko Sivitsky; later they were joined by Pavlo Lozinsky who became the parish’s church elder for many years. The first pastor who visited these settlers and served holy services in private homes was Rev. Nawkraty N. Kryzanowski, OSBM. Later the community was served by Redemptorist Fathers from Yorkton, the pastors of Canora and Arran, and finally by the pastors of Kamsack.
In 1941 the parish registered 25 member families with 40 children (Prop. Knyha) and in 1961, 95 souls (Directory). Presently the church stands closed while the parishioners join in holy services at the neighbouring parishes of Kamsack, Arran and Pelly.
The Ukrainian Catholic parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Philips, still remains under the pastoral charge of Kamsack.