A version of this post was published in partnership with PhiladelphiaNeighborhoods.com, a project of Temple University’s journalism program.
The Assumption of the Holy Virgin Orthodox Church is the only Russian Orthodox Church in South Philadelphia. The parish held a well-attended centennial celebration in October.
“My grandmother and grandfather mortgaged their home to help build this church,” said Catherine Kavalkovich. “Many of the founding members did.”
Carpatho Russians from Ukraine, Poland and Slovakia founded the church in 1913 at 2800 Snyder Ave. in Grays Ferry. Some descendants of the original parishioners attend the church to this day. When Catherine was a young girl there were 350 members, but as families moved out of the city, church numbers dwindled to fewer than 30.