90th Anniversary

Dec. 16th 2007.


As Autumn drifts into Winter and the first signs of Christmas begin to appear, it is an opportune time to reflect on the past year. At St. Mary's, without doubt, the Highlight event was our 90th Anniversary and Homecoming. The idea was conceived from the comment, "Something should be done to acknowledge our 90th Anniversary", and expanded into a successful celebration that involved over 400 guests and dignitaries who participated in a Wine and Cheese, Divine Liturgy, and Formal Banquet.

We were honoured by the presence of our Archbishop Most Reverend Lawrence Huculak, members of the Clergy, Knights of Columbus. the Mayor of Sault Ste. Marie, and Members of Parliament. Entertainment was provided by Ukrainian Actress and TV personality, Luba Goy and by Ukrainian Dance Groups from Sudbury and Sault Ste.Marie. Many former Parishioners of St. Mary's, now living across North America, returned "Home" to renew friendships and strengthen ties. Displays depicting our Ukrainian culture and Parish history stirred our emotions and filled us with nostalgia. As the Mayor aptly pointed out in his remarks, "Today, everyone in Sault Ste. Marie is Ukrainian!"

We were especially pleased to observe that there were so many positive "Spin-offs" from this celebration. Most importantly, it rejuvenated our Parish. The challenge to make our Anniversary a success required the co-operation and involvement of every parishioner. Whether the need was for decorating, serving on a committee, working on displays or making cabbage rolls and perogies; everyone was willing and enthusiastic to volunteer for the myriad of endless jobs. This has renewed our confidence in ourselves and others.and strenghtened our resolve to meet future challenges. One example is the recent interest in creating a committee that would promote Ukrainian Culture in our Parish and Community. Also there is a renewed interest and effort to obtain a much needed elevator for our Church.

It is also important to note that the success of our celebration also required the assistance of non-parishioners, caterers, donors and the Business Community. We were received with overwhelming enthusiasm, support and co-operation. This assistance and respect has affirmed for us as a Parish that we must be on the right track in our ongoing Mission to reach out to the Community. We have an optimistic and positive sense that our 90th Anniversary is a stimulus and renewed source of energy that will serve us well as we continue to interact with various members of our Community in the future.

Finally, we wish to once again express our sincere thanks and gratitude to everyone who attended, our volunteers, benfactors and donors. Without your generosity and encouragement our 90th Anniversary would still be only a "wishful idea" and not a SUCCESSFUL REALITY!

The theme for our liturgies at St. Mary's is: "Welcome to our Parish... Enter Expectantly... Breathe prayerfully... Worship reverently... Greet others in love... Leave touched by God, and come again soon." We trust and hope that Our 90th Anniversary Celebration touched many in some special spiritual way. GOD BLESS and may the peace and joy of Christmas be shared by you and your loved ones.