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Like a number of other churches in the area, differences of belief and cultural background have separated groups of people who originally worshiped together. In this case the congregation of the St. John Ukrainian Orthodox Church originally shared the St. Michael’s Russo-Greek Orthodox Church across the road.
In 1918 the Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church of Canada in 1918 was formed and the Ukrainian members of the St. Michael’s made arrangements for a priest to serve them, “inspired by patriotic sentiment and emboldened by the fact that the Russian Orthodox Mission was unable to provide regular pastoral care to St. Michael’s”. They believed that the culture and the church had been “russified” by the leadership in Moscow. In 1920, the group organized themselves as “the Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church of St. John of Suchava, the first organized Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church in Alberta”.
In 1923 priests serving this new organization were asked to vacant the premises and did so. Later in 1929, the Ukrainian parish was established and despite the opinion of some that that new church should be built in the village of Andrew itself, work was started in 1934 and completed in 1935.
- “Lamont County’s Self-Guided Church Tours” booklet. Available online at: http://www.bruderheim.ca/media/33888/churchtourbooklet.05.pdf
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada (2018, February 18). Sachava (Andrew) AB Saint John the Baptist Ukrainian Orthodox Church and Cemetery 1929 Retrieved from http://orthodoxcanada.ca/Sachava_(Andrew)_AB_Saint_John_the