Metropolitan Church History

The First Churches

The earliest Carpatho-Rusyn immigrants settled initially in northeastern Pennsylvania in and took jobs as miners in the anthracite coal fields of the region.  The emigres, however, soon began to realize that what had identified them, preserved them and sustained them in the “Old Country” and in the long journey to America was painfully missing in their strange, new and difficult surroundings.  They had no spiritual home, no place of worship that they could call their own, no church where they could practice their distinctive Greek Catholic faith.  Thus, the Carpatho-Rusyn people began to organize parishes, to build churches and to petition for priests to be sent from Europe.

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The Struggle for Recognition

The arrival of large numbers of Eastern Rite Catholics in the United States was an event for which the American Church was ill-prepared.   The sudden appearance of increasing numbers of people who professed to be Catholic, but who followed different traditions, used a different liturgical language and conducted a different manner of public worship, was extremely disconcerting to the American Catholic hierarchy for several reasons.

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