Model Farm church of the Patronage of the B.V.M. constructed 1933, ‘/z mile east of West Bend; R.M. 276.
MODEL FARM — The church of the Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary is the second church of the parish.
The first small wooden church was constructed by the founders of the parish in 1909. Chief foreman of the construction was A. Dubrovny. Bishop Nicetas Budka blessed the church and honoured the parish with a total of three visits. In 1933 the church was dismantled and the second church was constructed.
The architectural plans of the present church were designed by Ivan Tykholiz (John Tycholiz) who also acted as foreman during construction. Construction costs totalled $12,000 and were covered by the generous donations and voluntary labour of the parishioners. The combined five acre church and cemetery site, hilly and partly forested land, was donated by Ivan Woytas. The present church was blessed by Bishop Basil Ladyka in 1933.
The church is a wood constructed cruciform structure, 78 x 54 feet, with a large central dome supported by an octagonal drum. Two narrow towers apexed by cupolas are on corresponding sides of the main entrance. The main altar is in the south wing of the cruciform structure, the vestibule and choir loft are in the north wing. A large dome illuminated by four windows dominates the central area of the church, all other areas are dominated by vaulted ceilings. All ceilings and the central dome are reinforced with arcades which converge into four supporting pilasters. The interior as well as exterior walls are finished with tongue and groove (V-joint) siding.
The sanctuary is separated from the nave by an iconostas which was designed according to iconographic requirements and artistically decorated with icons by Theodore Baran in 1957; the construction and wood carving for the iconostas was done by W. Mazden of Ituna. Bishop Andrew Roborecki blessed the inconostas on August 18, 1957.
Adjacent to the church a single bell belfry was constructed in 1933; the bell was purchased in 1926 for $350. Also near the church is a wooden mission cross dating to 1924, and a monument installed in 1938 commemorating the 950th anniversary of Christianity in Ukraine. A short distance away stands the parish hall which was constructed in 1944 and expanded in 1952;
the first parish hall, the “Reading Room Prosvita” named after Taras Shevchenko, was constructed in 1916 and dismantled in 1944.
The first Ukrainian settlers in the Model Farm district arrived between 1903 and 1905 from the Borschchiv, Peremyshi and Jaroslaw counties. The founding members of the parish were as follows: Rev. Achille Delaere, CSSR, 0. Fedirko, V. Novak, V. Sereda, Iv. Woytas, Hnat. Blazheyko (Blazeiko), V. Chrunik, Hr. Popyk, V. Hadyevych (Hajewich), Iv. Sereda, A. Dubrovny, Yatsko Sereda, P. Chrunik, Ya. Klymashko (Klimashko), P. Nazar, R. Chrunik and M. Laschuk. On February 15, 1908 Rev. A. Delaere, CSSR, celebrated the first Divine Liturgy for the settlers at the home of Ivan Woytas; this date can be considered as the founding date of the parish.
This parish was blessed with eleven vocations to the Sister Servants of Mary Immaculate: Sr. Alphonsa M. Chrunik, Sr. Chryzantha E. Chrunik, Sr. Joanicia A. Fedirko, Sr. Alexis M. Nazar, Sr. Gregory A. Novak, Sr. Mary D. Novak, Sr. Elias A. Popyk, Sr. Benedict E. Sereda, Sr. Oreste K. Sereda, Sr. Ambrose P. Stachiw and Sr. Augustine A. Woytas.
In 1941 the parish had 70 members with 120 children (Prop. Knyha), in 1961 there were 260 souls (Directory), and in 1967, 140 souls (questionnaire). In 1975 the parish consists of 23 families and 5 single members, a total membership of 100 souls who live within a seven mile radius of the church. In 1976 the parish was under the directorship of: Rev. Roman Chomiak, CSSR, pastor, Alex Klimashko, Mike Sereda, Steve Hopko, Theodore Woytas, Mike Popik and Bill Hopko.
The Ukrainian Catholic parish of the Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Model Farm, is under the pastoral charge of Yorkton.
Model Farm Protection of Blessed Mother of God Church and Cemetery
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