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Ukrainian Catholic Parish of St. John the Baptist

Newcombe RM 260, Saskatchewan, S0L, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2000/04/11

View of church looking northwest, 2008.; Government of Saskatchewan, Marvin Thomas, 2008.
Front and South Elevations
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1944/01/01 to 1944/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/03/26

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Ukrainian Catholic Parish of St. John the Baptist is a Municipal Heritage Property located on a .76-ha parcel of rural land approximately 20 km southwest of the Town of Kindersley. The parcel contains a small wood-frame church that was built in 1944, and a one-room schoolhouse that was moved to the property in 1961 for use as a parish hall. The designation applies only to the church building.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Ukrainian Catholic Parish of St. John the Baptist lies in its association with the district’s Ukrainian Catholic community. Ukrainians who settled in this area were part of the wave of Ukrainian immigration to Canada that followed World War I. Initially, the new community’s religious needs were served by travelling priests who presided over church services in the settlers’ homes. In 1944, followers of the Ukrainian Catholic faith organized their own parish and built St. John the Baptist church on a parcel of donated land. Donated funds financed the project, and parishioners volunteered their labour to erect the church building. Overcoming the difficulty of obtaining building materials during a period of wartime scarcity was further testimony to the importance the parishioners attached to the project.

The church served as a place of worship for over 40 years, with people coming from long distances to practise their traditional faith. The church was also an important social and cultural centre where people could meet for fellowship and to maintain a feeling of connection to their cultural roots. By 1986, though, the rural area’s population was declining and the church was forced to close. Although few descendants of the early congregations remain in the area, the local community still values the property for its association with an important part of its heritage.

Further heritage value resides in the historical integrity of the church’s architecture and materials. The church’s wood-frame construction, east-west aligned rectangular plan, gable roof, pointed-arch windows, and interior and exterior finishes are typical of many of Saskatchewan’s vernacular rural churches. The interior spatial arrangement of nave, vaulted ceiling, and elevated, east-facing sanctuary is also seen in country churches of many faiths in the province. The corner towers surmounted by onion-shaped cupolas and decorative iron crosses reference the church’s Eastern derivation.


Rural Municipality of Newcombe No. 260 Bylaw No. 02/00.

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the Ukrainian Catholic Parish of St. John the Baptist resides in the following character-defining elements:
-elements that reflect the building’s association with the area’s Ukrainian settlers, including the corner towers surmounted by tin-covered, onion-shaped cupolas; the hand-wrought iron crosses on the cupolas and roof peak; and the building’s east-west alignment on its original site;
-elements that speak to the church’s historical integrity, including original clapboard siding and shake shingles; pointed-arch window openings in the side walls; windows with tracery on the front gable and above the front entrance; wood wainscot and flooring, v-joint ceiling and plaster walls; and the interior layout of nave, vaulted ceiling and elevated, east-facing sanctuary.




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (SK)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act, s. 11(1)(a)

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1944/01/01 to 1986/12/31

Theme - Category and Type

Building Social and Community Life
Religious Institutions

Function - Category and Type



Religion, Ritual and Funeral
Religious Facility or Place of Worship

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Saskatchewan Ministry of Tourism, Parks, Culture and Sport Heritage Resources Branch 1919 Saskatchewan Drive Regina, SK File: MHP 2043

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

MHP 2043



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