Peterson church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit constructed 1926; R.M. 371.
PETERSON — The church of the Descent of the Holy Spirit (Pentecost) is the first church of the parish.
The church was constructed in 1926 on a one and a half acre site in Peterson. The first Divine Liturgy in the church was celebrated by Rev. Michael Olenchuk. The church was blessed in 1936 by Archbishop Basil Ladyka and visted several times by Bishop Andrew Roborecki who celebrated Divine Liturgy in the church on May 12, 1968.
The wooden rectangular church measures 38 x 24 feet, has two frontal towers apexed by cupolas, a shingled gable roof and painted narrow wood exterior siding. The main entrance is through a separately roofed adjoining porch-vestibule.
In the interior the church is dominated by a vaulted ceiling. The elevated sanctuary contains the main altar and has two adjoining sacristies. Behind the main altar hangs a large oil on canvas icon of the church patron. Two traditional icons, the Holy Mother with Christ Child and Christ Who Loves Mankind, are found in the nave; these were also done in the oil on canvas technique (signature illegible). In 1935, Ivan Chornobay donated to the parish a gospel book from the Kievo-Pecherska publication dating to 1900. This book is preserved in this parish church.
The church has a choir loft, a wooden floor and wooden pews seating approx. 60 persons. Originally the walls and ceiling had v-joint wood finishing; presently they are finished with masonite which is beige at the base of the walls and a figured light grey in all remaining areas. Lighting is by candles only, heating is by a wood and coal burning heater. The parishioners constructed the church, at a total cost of $1,700, through their generous voluntary labour under the foremanship of Maxim Towstego.
The church site contains a mission cross and a metal post bell tower; the bell was donated by I. Chornobay. The cemetery is one-quarter mile east of the church.
Ukrainian settlers arrived in this area in 1909 predominantly from the Borshchiv county. By 1915 they formed the Dana parish while the Peterson parish was established somewhat later for practical reasons of distance. The founding members of the parish were:
Maxim Towstego, Joseph Smohliy, Angus Didur, Charlie Didur, John Matieshyn, Nicholas Gniazdowski, Matvey Myroniuk, Anthony Kuchapski, Michael Slu-chinski, Jack Makara, Joseph Kuchapski and Joseph Kokotailo. This parish had one vocation to the sisterhood, Sr. Bernadette M. Wawrick, SMI.
In 1941 there were 23 members and 20 children registered to the parish (Prop. Knyha), in 1961 there were 60 souls (Directory), in 1967, 16 families and in 1975, 6 families were accounted for. In 1976 the parish executive was under the directorship of: Rev. Lubomyr Ramach, acting pastor, John Towstego, Michael Myroniuk, Pauline Myroniuk, Pauline Kuchapski and Emily Towstego.
The Ukrainian Catholic parish of the Descent of the Holy Spirit (Pentecost) at Peterson is under the pastoral charge of Vonda.