Sunday, October 3, 2010

The History of the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Part 4

Continued from The History of the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Part 3

After a few conferences of the parish board, the project was approved. Permission was received from diocesan authorities to begin the work immediately. Until now, only the front part of the building was standing, in which was located seven classes and housing for the sisters on the second and third floors, and on the first a church for 500 people. It was decided to build to this standing part, a part right back to the alley. The second part of the building was significantly larger than the front part, because it added 12 classes in the school, and over 1000 seats in the church. The parish suffered somewhat in this undertaking because, while the building was under construction, the rear, that is, the new part, came down, that is, it collapsed because of a mistake of the architect. Nobody wanted to accept the blame, and so the matter was referred to the municipal court. The court issued a ruling against the parish, affirming that the collapse was caused by the inadequate plans of the architect, and not the respective contractors. The cost of the addition, that is, the second and larger part of the building, together with the damages imposed by the court, amounted to $105,608.59. This addition was completed in the year 1919.

With this, the first period of the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary ended.

From the 18th of December 1919, the second period began. The years that Father Dziuk, the organizer and first pastor of the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary spent there were years of great movement in building. Besides the usual priestly work, most of the time he had to light the way for meditation as if of the best and cheapest it was possible to construct and maintain the necessary buildings. In December 1919, the Reverend Bishop Gallagher, while giving the first pastor the proper acknowledgment for the work accomplished in the building and development of our parish, he released him from future obligations at this parish. Like a ship without a hand to guide it, it was not possible to reach the harbor without peril of breaking up and sinking, and so our parish, without an appropriate guiding hand, the spiritual fate of the parish and the material fate of this parish could not survive. And so, the Reverend Bishop, who took over the administration of the Detroit Diocese after the death of his predecessor in 1918, having seen the beneficial and productive work of Father Wojciech Ządała in the Parish of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Wyandotte, Michigan, appointed him to the rectory of the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in December 1919.

Naturally, at every change of pastors, there is always anxiety among the parishioners about whether the next one following the predecessor will also introduce a new administration, which will not recognize the predecessor. So, when we get accustomed to a usual order for ourselves, it usually turns out that every change is perceived as a disadvantage for the parish. Every administrator, on any side, more or less tramples on the path of his predecessor, but each possesses certain individual methods and personal ideas of administration. It happens frequently that, after such a change, certain administrative changes will occur, not to show superiority by this, but just because everyone applies his own method in certain circumstances, as appropriate.

From "Silver Jubilee Souvenir Booklet of the Church of the Assumption 1912-1937", Detroit, Michigan. Translation from Polish to English by Stephen Danko, 2007.

To Be Continued...

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