OUR LADY OF GRACE
HOLY TRINITY CHURCH
1911 HOLY TRINITY PARISH, BARBERTON
AROUND 1900—A decade after C. Barber, the founder of the Diamond Match Company, settled in the area, the first Hungarian-
Still too small to support a pastor, the community welcomed a number of visiting priests, including Father Oscar Szilagyi, Father Emil Egner, Father Oscar Solymos, and Father Peter Popovich—a Greek-
On July 1, 1928, the parish purchased land for the new church and school on Wooster Road North. With the onset of the Great Depression, however, money became scarce and work on the building was postponed until September 1932. By Passion Sunday 1933, the building had progressed sufficiently to allow the parish to celebrate its first Mass in the basement of the church. On May 30, 1933, Auxiliary Bishop James A. McFadden dedicated the new Holy Trinity Church. It was in this basement church that the community endured the trying times of the Great Depression, the Second World War, and the rise of the Cold War's Iron Curtain. After serving the Holy Trinity community for over 25 years, Father Kovacs died of cancer on December 28, 1952.
The parish's next pastor, Father Nicholas Dengl, OFM, received permission from Archbishop Edward F. Hoban to complete the church. In August 1959, Father Dengl celebrated Mass for the first time in the upper church. That same year, Holy Trinity School opened with three Sisters of the Divine Redeemer from Elizabeth, Pennsylvania and one lay teacher. On December 13, 1959, the new Holy Trinity Church was dedicated. Upon Father Dengl's 1964 elevation to Custos of the Franciscan Order in Youngstown, Ohio, the parish welcomed a new pastor, Father Baan Vitez, OFM. During Father Vitez's pastorate, the parish constructed a new brick convent, remodeled the church sanctuary to comply with the reforms of the Second Vatican Council, and installed new stained-
During the pastorate of his successor, Father George Meszaros, OFM, the parish addressed its growing financial problems. On May 30, 1974, Holy Trinity Parish was honored with a visit from Cardinal Joseph Mindszenty, advocate for religious and political rights, who had been imprisoned by Hungary's Communist government.. Departing in June 1976, Father Meszaros left the community in the capable hands of Fathers Nicholas Dengl, OFM and Carl Ciprian, OFM, who together worked towards the retirement of the parish debt. During the early 1980s, the parish welcomed a number of pastors, including Fathers John Domotor, OFM, Father Charles Reuter, OFM, and Father Kalman Miskolczy, OFM. In 1983, Father Cipran returned to the parish. With its enrollment, dropping, Holy Trinity School closed in June 1986. In this sesquicentennial year, the Holy Trinity Parish continues to uphold the religious and social traditions of its Hungarian-