Ternopil Regional Styles
A considerable number of Ukrainian-Canadians have ancestry originating from the Western Ukrainian plains of the Ternopil region and so it is not surprising that Canada has a substantial number of churches that take architectural influence from the Ternopil region. There are two styles in particular that have greatly influenced Ukrainian-Canadian churches—the Ternopil nave style and the Ternopil cruciform style.
Ternopil Nave Style Churches
- Epiphany of Our Lord Church, Kuzmyna,
Poland – Ternopil nave style
In the case of the Ternopil nave style church, its popularity in Canada additionally may be attributed to its simplicity in structure. It bears a resemblance to the Bukovinian style in that the internal space is basically rectangular but it also differs from the Bukovinian style in that one does not usually witness the apsidal shape at either end. The ends of the Ternopil style roofs are more likely to be gabled, rather than hipped or splayed. In many instances the sanctuary seems like a small addition to the east end of the structure.
The Ternopil nave style church often will only have a single small cupola that is usually closed. The cupola may be centred on the roofline or somewhat off centre. This trend began to change somewhat in recent centuries as more churches were built with single large open domes. Perhaps this resulted from an influence taken from Boyko or Hutsul-style churches.
For an example of a Ternopil nave style church in its natural setting, see the photograph of the Epiphany of Our Lord Church in Kuzmyna located in eastern Poland close to the Ukrainian border. The church was built in 1784 and was originally Greek Catholic; however, the building now belongs to a Polish Roman Catholic parish.
Another interesting example of the Ternopil nave style is Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Zholobok, Poland. It was built in 1830 and it, too, was originally Greek Catholic but has now been taken over by a Roman Catholic parish.
- Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Zholobok, Poland – Ternopil nave style
St. Michael’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in North Foley, Manitoba, fits the description of the Ternopil nave style perfectly. It is a rectangular structure and its roof is gabled at each end. It has a single diminutive cupola that is off centre. Built in 1905, it can genuinely lay claim to being a pioneer church.
- St. Michael’s Ukrainian Catholic Church, North Foley, MB
Another good example of the Ternopil nave style is found in Holy Ghost Ukrainian Catholic Church at Lakedale, Manitoba (5 ½ miles northwest of Angusville). It was built in 1904 and is also in the category of a pioneer church. The Gothic arched windows are an example of early western influence in Ukrainian-Canadian churches.
- Holy Ghost Ukrainian Catholic Church, Lakedale, Manitoba
Also in the Ternopil nave style is Sacred Heart Ukrainian Catholic Church. It is located 6 miles southeast of Prud’homme, Saskatchewan, and was built in 1928. It is also known as the Havryliuky church.
- Sacred Heart Ukrainian Catholic Church, 6 miles SE of Prud’homme, SK
Ternopil Cruciform Style Churches
In some ways, the Ternopil cruciform style church may seem like a fusion of Ternopil nave style and the Hutsul style. In addition to having the cruciform floor plan, the Ternopil cruciform style church generally has a large open dome. The roof is usually gabled, rather than hipped or splayed. Additionally, many newer churches in the Ternopil cruciform style will frequently include some of the embellishment more associated with the Kievan and Cossack Baroque styles.
While the large open dome over the crossing is a signature of Ternopil cruciform style churches, some will have two smaller domes placed at the front of the church. Whether this is a genuinely Ukrainian attribute or whether this is an addition resulting from Western Rite influences may be up for debate. While in Ukraine in 2001, I came across St. Demetrius Greek Catholic Church in Kulkiv, north of L’viv. It is of the Ternopil cruciform style and it had recently been enlarged at the front. The addition to the church included the placement of two new domes at the front of the church.
- St. Demetrius Greek Catholic Church, Kulkiv, Ukraine
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church located at Star Peno, Alberta, was built in 1927. However, the parish itself is much older and lays claim to being the oldest Ukrainian Catholic parish in Alberta. The parish was formed in 1897 at Star Edna but later it had to relocate after a schism split the membership into Catholic and Orthodox camps. In most respects the church is typical of the Ternopil cruciform style. It has a large dome over the crossing and each of the arms of the cross-like structure end in gabled roofs. The west end of the church is a little more elongated than is usual for this style, but that may have been due to an addition. The fieldstone belfry standing next to the church was constructed along the lines of a belfry that was in a Ukrainian village from which many of the earliest parishioners had immigrated.
- Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church, Star Peno, AB
St. Michael the Archangel Orthodox Church (OCA) was built in Peno, Alberta, not far from the site of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church. It was constructed of logs in about 1909; although the logs have been long since covered over with siding. In this instance the west arm of church is only slightly longer the others and the church more closely resembles a Greek cross.
- St. Michael the Archangel Orthodox Church (OCA), Peno, AB
Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Church at Oakburn, Manitoba, presents a good example of the Ternopil cruciform style church. It was built between 1943 and 1945 when the parish became too large for its first church.
- Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Catholic Church, Oakburn, MB
St. Demetrius Ukrainian Catholic Church (Kyziv-Tiaziv) located 8 miles south of Rama, Saskatchewan, is a splendid example of the Ternopil cruciform style church. It was built in 1928 and is the second church of the parish. The church has a massive dome over a Greek-cross plan and there are tiny cupola-like embellishments with crosses at each end of each arm of the church. At the time this photograph was taken, the building was in the process of being restored and one of the exterior walls still appeared to lack paint.
- St. Demetrius Ukrainian Catholic Church, 8 miles south of Rama, SK
One and a half miles south of Insinger, Saskatchewan, there is an interesting example of a Ternopil cruciform style church. Sts. Peter & Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church has such a large dome that it seems to dominate the rest of the structure. Note the addition of the two frontal towers with smaller domes.
- Sts. Peter & Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church, south of Insinger, SK
Another Sts. Peter & Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church—this time in Kosiw, Manitoba—is interesting for its embellishment. At each of the four ends of the church one sees little cupolas with crosses on top. This church was built in 1921 in an area southwest of Dauphin.
- Sts. Peter & Paul Ukrainian Orthodox Church, near Dauphin, MB