St John the Baptist
Armenian Apostolic Church History
St. John the Baptist Armenian Apostolic Church of West Allis began as a mission parish on October 27, 1940. The original parish trustees was formed and approved by the late Archbishop Karekin Hovsepian, Primate.
On July 1, 1941, a one and one-half city lot was purchased for the sum of $650.00 at 63rd and Washington Streets in West Allis, Wisconsin.
The church was built and consecrated on Sunday, May 10, 1942, by Archbishop Karekin Hovsepian. Sahag Mouradian, the Godfather, desired to name the church after his father Hovhannes and father’s brother Mugerditch.
As time went by, a need for a more modern facility and center for the community became evident. A multi-purpose structure was designed by Harold Baylerian, architect.
A 2.2-acre of real estate was acquired for the sum of $7,000.00 at 7825 West Layton Avenue, Greenfield, Wisconsin, on June 18, 1967. A cultural center was then constructed as the first phase of the building project and was dedicated on September 27, 1970. Services, during that period were conducted in the cultural hall.
Groundbreaking activities for the new church took place on June 15-16, 1985, presided over by His Eminence, Archbishop Torkom Manoogian. Over 20 survivors of the 1915 Armenian Genocide participated in the ceremonies.
On Sunday, June 22, 1986, Divine Liturgy and Cornerstone Laying Ceremonies were celebrated and conducted by the Primate and assisted by Rev. Fr. Tateos Abdalian, Pastor.
On the weekend of November 15-16, 1986, the parishioners of St. John the Baptist Armenian Church celebrated the consecration of their new church. The new edifice stands as a reminder of the inspiration and sacrifice of immigrant Armenians, who came to this land with their trust in God and dedication to the Mother Church of Etchmiadzin.