HOLY NAME OF MARY CATHOLIC CHURCH
320 EAST PORTAGE AVE., SAULT STE MARIE, MI 49783
Our beautiful historic mission, Holy Angels, is located in the Payment area of Sugar Island, overlooking the northeast shore. It is opened annually for a Mass honoring Bishop Frederic Baraga. Holy Angels needs your support to replace its foundation and preserve this bit of history.
In 1853, Frederic Baragaís appointment as bishop to the newly created Vicariate of Upper Michigan brought him to the Soo and eventually to Sugar Island. A few years earlier, Michael Payment established a trading post on the northeast shore of Sugar Island. He and his son Richard, conducted trade, sales, and barter with passing river traffic and locals. The settlement was known as Payment or Paymentís Landing.
Bishop Baraga frequented the Payment area, ministering to and bonding with the French and Indians. Sometime during 1856-57, under Bishop Baragaís administration, Church of Our Savior, Friend of Children (later to be known as Holy Angels) was built. It served the people of northern Sugar Island and remained open until 1953 when it closed. In 1977 and 1978, with and under the supervision of Roger Pilon, volunteers began stabilization and restoration work on the church interior. This included general cleaning, repair of floors and windows, varnishing and interior painting. Exterior scraping and painting followed in 1979.
Holy Angels re-opened in 1982 for an annual summer service which later was held to honor Bishop Baraga. Thanks to Al and Pearl Menard and their family, the church was cared for, for many years. The Sugar Island Historical Preservation Society, with a generous donation from the Sault Tribe, has replaced the roof and painted the exterior, as well as adding shutters to the windows for protection.
Time and weather have taken its toll on this beautiful, historic building. The foundation is in dire need of replacement in order to preserve this bit of history on Sugar Island. Hence, our project begins . . . .
Holy Angels Restoration Committee is a group of parishioners from Sacred Heart Catholic Church,
who recognized the need and urgency to take on this project at this time. We hope to preserve this historic
church and keep our Sugar Island history alive for future generations. We have developed a YouTube slide show which showcases our beautiful historic church and lets you see up close the project ahead of us. Click here to view.
We are working with U.P. Engineers and have followed their recommendation to accept the low bid from Wilcox Construction of $22,500. The total project cost including engineering fees is approximately $25,000. We are actively conducting fund raising to achieve this goal by spring enabling the start of construction.