Holy Trinity Cathedral
Late 1800s/Early 1900s: Polish-speaking immigrants come to Manchester, NH in search of mill employment.
1900-1902: Roman Catholic Bishop Denis Bradley not only allows these immigrants to organize an ethnic parish, he also provides a Polish-speaking pastor (Rev. John B. Puchala) and authorizes the purchase of the old First Christian Church (renamed St. Hedwig Church).
1902-1914: St. Hedwig Church grows in membership, unfortunately, numerous clashes occur between Father Puchala and a number of parishioners.
1914: Associate St. Hedwig pastor, Rev. Stephan Plaza sides with the anti-Puchala parishioners.
1915: Led by Father Plaza, dissident St. Hedwig parishioners purchase land and begin construction of Holy Cross Church (forerunner of today’s Holy Trinity Cathedral).
October 22, 1916: Father Plaza officiates the inaugural service at Holy Cross Church despite a refusal of Roman Catholic Bishop George Guertin to consecrate it.
1916-1920: A major rift occurs between Father Plaza and Holy Cross parishioners over church finances, culminating in Father Plaza’s departure.
1921-1929: Holy Cross parishioners align with the North American Old Catholic Church and are led by Bishop Roman Slocinski.
1929: Holy Cross Church is beset with financial bankruptcy, only to be rescued by a group of its parishioners; Bishop Slocinski is dismissed as pastor.
1930-1935: Holy Cross Church aligns with the Polish National Catholic Church (PNCC) of Scranton, PA; four different PNCC priests officiate as pastors in the newly renamed Holy Trinity Church (HTC).
1935-1940: Rev. Bronislaw Krupski is named pastor and proceeds to solidify the parish under the PNCC faith.
1940-1965: Rev. Joseph L. Soltysiak comes to HTC, first as an interim, then permanent pastor. In 1952, he is elevated to Bishop of the PNCC’s Eastern Diocese, thus changing the church’s status and name to Holy Trinity Cathedral. During the early 1950’s, Bishop Soltysiak oversees a major restoration of the church’s interior.
1965-1978: After Bishop Solytsiak’s retirement, Rev. Thaddeus Kozieja assumes HTC’s pastoral duties until 1972 when he is replace by Bishop Walter Slowakiewicz who guides the parish and diocese until his untimely death in 1978.
1978-2011: Bishop Thomas Gnat is named as HTC’s spiritual leader until his retirement in 2011. He oversees the construction of a new church center complex during the mid-1980’s.
2011-Present: Bishop Paul Sobiechowski is installed as HTC’s fourth bishop and oversees another major restoration of the church building in time for the 100th anniversary of its construction.