Designing the New Cathedral

The Old CathedralThe classical model of Byzantine church architecture is the Church of the Holy Wisdom, Hagla Sophia, built in Constantinople in the first half of the sixth century.  Its structure, which still stands today, is topped by a distinctive dome surrounded by a triple-bar cross.
Many means were used to express the Byzantine faith and its aspiration towards the Divine in the architecture.  Typically, a relatively plain façade sheltered an unsurpassed wealth of decoration.   Rather than a house of God, the space projected an image of a miniature universe in which the one and only God dwelt. Designers spiritualized space and dematerialized mass.  The polished surfaces or curved them to reduce the impact of their mass; they perforated other details such as those adorning the lintels or capitals to give the ethereal texture of embroidery of lace.
Sunlight, penetrating from above, illuminated the nave and lifted the dome to produce a sense of religious exaltation.  Emphasis on the height and length of these buildings was an attempt to unify their inner spaces. Continue reading

Ground breaking

JULY 5, 1992 – It was the day after the nation had celebrated the anniversary of its Independence.  A sunny, bright Sunday, and in the crowd that had gathered in the grassy field opposite St. John’s Cathedral Center were the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of another group that had gathered nearly a entry earlier for the very same reason. 
These were the descendants of those who came to America from their native Eastern Europe to gain economic and religious independence for themselves and their families.  To their “new land,” they brought their culture, their customs, their languages, and most importantly, they brought their church.  Almost a hundred years earlier,  the church that was to become St. John the Baptist Byzantine Catholic Cathedral. Was begun near the banks of the Monongahela River, close enough to their homes to be a focal point of their lives and near the steel mills that meant economic freedom.    Now, for the congregation of St. John’s. it was a “new beginning” and the spirit that brought their ancestors together long ago became a part of them as they looked on.   Continue reading

Church Chronology

August 4, 1936 – Michaylo appointed as pastor.

Fall, 1936 – Parish school opened as a day school.

November 5, 1946 – Consecration of Daniel Ivancho as co-adjutor bishop at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Oakland.

May 13, 1948 – Bishop Takach dies.

Summer, 1954 – Msgr. Nicholas Elko appointed as rector.

December 2, 1954 – Elko appointed as administrator of the Exarchate after Ivancho resigns.

March 6, 1955 – Elko consecrated as bishop in Rome.

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Bishop Daniel Ivancho

Daniel Ivancho was born in the village of Jasinia, Maramoroš County in the Eparchy of Mukačevo (present-day Ukraine), on March 30, 1908. At the age of eight, he emigrated to the United States and settled in Cleveland, Ohio with his … Continue reading

Bishop Basil Takach

Basil Takach was born in the small village of Vučkovoje in Maramoroš County (present-day Hungary) on October 27, 1879. Following the example of his father and his uncle, young Basil entered the Seminary in Užhorod and was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Julius Firczak on December 12, 1902. After nine years of service as a parish priest, he was appointed Controller of the Eparchial Bank and executive officer of its printing society by the bishop.  In addition to these responsibilities, he also was named superior of the “Alumneum,” the Eparchy’s boarding school. His honesty, dedication and kindness made him one of the most loved and respected priests in the Mukačevo Eparchy. Continue reading

Bishop John M. Bilock

John Michael Bilock was born to Michael and Anna (Timko) Bilock in McAdoo, Pennsylvania on June 20, 1916. After being graduated from the public schools in McAdoo, he pursued his collegiate and theological studies at St. Procopius College and Seminary in Lisle, Illinois. On February 3, 1946, Bishop Basil Takach ordained him to the priesthood in the bishop’s private chapel in Munhall, Pa.
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Metropolitan Archbishop Stephen J. Kocisko

Stephen John Kocisko was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota on June 11, 1915, one of nine children of John and Anna (Somos) Kocisko.  After his graduation from De La Salle Catholic High School, he pursued his vocation to the priestly life by attending Nazareth Preparatory Seminary in St. Paul, Minn. Later, he was sent by Bishop Basil Takach for his philosophical and theological education to St. Josaphat Seminary in Rome where he earned a Licentiate (Master’s) Degree in Sacred Theology. Just prior to his departure for the United States, Bishop Alexander Evreinoff, the Russian ordaining prelate for Byzantine Catholics in Rome, ordained him to the priesthood on March 30, 1941. Continue reading

Metropolitan Archbishop Bishop Thomas V. Dolinay

The son and grandson of Byzantine Catholic priests, Thomas Victor Dolinay was born to Paňi Yolanda Dobra and Father Julius Dolinay in Uniontown, Pennsylvania on July 24, 1923. He attended the public schools of Struthers, Ohio and Uniontown, and graduated in 1941. He then studied at St. Procopius College in Lisle, Illinois, and upon receiving his degree in 1945, entered the Benedictine Seminary, completing his theological studies in 1948. On May 16, 1948, Bishop Daniel Ivancho ordained him to the priesthood in the monastery chapel of the Sisters of St. Basil in Uniontown, Pa.
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Metropolitan Archbishop Judson M. Procyk

Judson Michael Procyk was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania on April 9, 1931. After graduation from high school, he answered the call to serve God as a priest in the Byzantine Catholic Church. His first two years pursuing this vocation were spent at St. Procopius College in Lisle, Illinois. With the opening of SS. Cyril and Methodius Seminary in Pittsburgh, he continued his studies at Duquesne University and was awarded his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1953. On May 19, 1957, he was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Nicholas Elko.
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