RENO – HOLY SPIRIT [Holy Ghost ] Parish (Парафія Зіслання Святого Духа)

The Church is located approximately 40 km. southeast of Peace River, Alberta, in a hamlet called Reno which is 9 km. due east of Highway 2. The beginnings of the community go back to 1931 when the history of the Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Holy Ghost actually began. From that time Fr. Basil Kamenetsky served Liturgies in the homes of local parishioners, like Ivan Kalyn.

It was in 1940-1941 that Fr. Wynnyk, in joint cooperation with Sam Huska, The Chomiak and Kalyn Families, prepared plans for a church building in Reno. These plans saw fruition in 1946 after an earlier plan to build a church on one acre of land donated by Ivan Kalyn and incorporated by Fr. Sianchuk in 1938, fell through. Fr. Hrynyshyn supervised and worked as head carpenter during the construction of the church. Fr. Wynnyk arranged for the title of a one acre parcel, then raised money by showing movies in Reno and Nampa, Alberta. Fr. Benedict Hrynyshyn continued the fund-raising when he arrived at Reno to become the head carpenter. From 1947 to 1951, Fr. Martyrius Vincentaylo was the local priest, residing in High Prairie, Alberta, in a residence established for this area in 1941 by the Basilian Fathers. In 1952 there were seven paid members and in 1984 there were 11 paid up families (30 people). In 1960 the Parish ladies organized themselves and created a Ukrainian Women Catering Group to provide food and beverage service at weddings, anniversaries and local functions. The money was then contributed to the Reno Ukrainian Catholic Church. The parishioners also organized raffles and bingos to help the parish. They also supported the priest’s residence in High Prairie and later in Grande Prairie. A small community in Reno rallied together in 1964-1965 to purchase a car for the parish priest. In 1974 under the dedicated direction of Fr. Philip Shinduke, a summer camp – Ukrainian Catholic Childrens’ Camp – was established at Lac Cardinal and operated for three years. The families that were involved in the volunteer work of the parish, were: John Chomiak, Bill Chomiak, Maxim Paluck, Sam Huska, Nick Kuzenko, Paul & Alex Kuzden, Mike Bambush, Peter Mayowski, Alex Barnowski, Bill Naturkach, Skwarik and Alex Kolebaba.

The following Basilian priests served the Parish: Fr. Kamenetsky (1931), Fr. Josaphat Tymochko (1931), Fr. Paul Olinsky (1932-1935), Fr. Theodozy Dobko (1935-1938), Fr. Matthew Sianchuk (1938), Fr. Ireneus Procenty (1940), Fr. Ambrose Wynnyk (1941), Fr. Benedict Hrynyshyn (1941-1946), Fr. Martyrius Vincentaylo (1947 to 1951).

In 1952 the Eparchial clergy started to look after the faithful: Fr. Volodymyr Slaby (1952), Fr. Euthymiius Melnychuk (1953-1966), Fr. Demetrius Baziuk (1967-1971), Fr. Philip Shinduke (1972-1980), Fr. Richard Zuback (1984-1985), Deacon Benny Ambrose (1986-1988), Fr. Benny Ambrose (1988-1992), Fr. William Hupalo (1993-1995), Fr. Ivan Nykyforuk (1996-2003), Fr. Gary Sedgwick (2003-2008), , Fr. Taras Kraychuk (2009-2010), Fr. Roman Planchak (2010-).