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Detroit, Michigan: Saint John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church

About Saint John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in Detroit:

Saint John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in DetroitAs mentioned elsewhere, the Ukrainian Catholic Church is an Eastern-Rite Church and part of the Roman Catholic Church, so you are welcome to attend Mass and receive communion in any of their churches.

The first big wave of Ukrainian immigrants came to the United States in the 1870s. Many settled along the east coast, primarily in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Some continued west to settle in large industrial cities such as Detroit. Most of those who arrived in Detroit came from the province of Lemkyvshyna in western Ukraine. Having settled here but not having a church of their own, these early immigrants attended Latin Rite parishes. However, they soon began to acknowledge the need for their own Ukrainian Catholic priests and their own Byzantine Rite.

In early 1907, a group of Ukrainian families congregated and decided to build a Ukrainian Catholic church of their own. Michael Stefansky donated a parcel of land at 3564 Cicotte and had a small wooden church built. Since many early parishioners were named John, the church was dedicated to St. John the Baptist.  In November of 1918, a new church was built.  There is much more to the history of this church…you can read it on their Facebook page….just use Google translate.

St. John’s had a serious setback in the early morning hours of August 7, 2001 when a fire was started by a short circuit in the wiring inside a wall of the sacristy. The fire grew unnoticed as it destroyed the sacristy and the roof of the apse over the altar. The fire was temporarily held in check by a fire wall in the church attic between the nave and altar. Just as it was ready to spread to the rest of the roof and ultimately destroy the church, a type of miracle happened. The fire shorted out the controls for the church bells in the sacristy and the bells started ringing out an alarm. Neighbors who were awakened by the bells called the fire department and the church was saved from destruction. Although the contents of the sacristy and the artwork in the apse were destroyed, the damage was mainly limited to that due to smoke and water. The altar, iconostas, tetrapod, pews, stained glass windows, and other artwork survived. The Divine Liturgy was celebrated in the school hall for several months as the church was repaired and the artwork restored.

The renewed church was blessed by Bishop Michael Wiwchar on Palm Sunday, 2002.


Finding Saint John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in Detroit:

Address:  3877 Clippert St, Detroit, MI 48210

Tel: +1 (313) 897-7300 Fax: +1 (313) 897 – 7304

Although the parish does not have its own website, click here for their Facebook page.


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