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11. St. Mary Ukrainian Orthodox Church
MUSIDORA west end of townsite


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In view of the relatively late date of this church -- 1929 -- it is perhaps more simplified in shape and design than might be expected. Both the closed dome and the abbreviated tripartite plan shape with no clear division between narthex and nave (the storm porch is not considered as one of the "parts") were, by 1929, evocative of an earlier era. Further design anomalies are the windows, which are pointed rather than round-headed, and the orientation of the worshipping congregation. which here faces west instead of the usual east. Taken together, these factors suggest a possible lack of expertise, membership, or money in the Ukrainian Orthodox community when this church was built.

The interior of St. Mary's is as interesting for what is not visible as for what is. Early in the structure's history, Vadym Dobrolizh painted both the iconostasis and the interior as a whole. The iconostasis remains in its original condition but the rest of Dobrolizh's work has been painted over or covered up with ceiling tile. Today, simple hung icons adorn the walls throughout. Apparently, this turn of events is connected to the church's having been sold to private, non-religious concerns for a short period. Later, the congregation decided that it wanted to buy the building back and did so, but by that time certain decorative changes had been made.

The first parish priest was Reverend Ivan Maiba. There is a wooden belltower next to the church while the Ivan Kotliarevsky Hall (made of fieldstone) sits behind it.