Ss. Simon and Jude Catholic Church

32500 Palmer Rd. Westland, MI 48186


About Us

     On June 26, 1959, Saints Simon and Jude Parish was organized within the Archdiocese of Detroit. The following day, Father Arthur Oldani was installed as pastor. Our first mass was celebrated on Sunday, June 5, 1959 at a temporary location, St. Kevin’s Church.

      The original building began construction in December 1959 and the church was dedicated on Sunday, August 7, 1960 to Archbishop John Deardon. On July 5, 1964, Reverand Andrew Nieckarz was installed as pastor.

      In 1975, the social hall was added to the original church structure. After the death of Father Nieckarz, the hall was dedicated in his name in recognition of his service to our parish of over 25 years.

      July 1989 brought us a new spiritual leader, Father Gerard Bechard.

Plans for a new church began in 1992. After a myraid of trials and tribulations, we finally broke ground on Sunday, January 24, 1999, for the new church.

      After the ground breaking, construction began on the new geodesic dome. The foundation was poured, the dome parts were delivered and preparations began for Adam Cardinal Maida’s dedication set for Tuesday, November 23, 1999.

      Ss. Simon and Jude has become a prominent structure on the city’s skyline. As you approach from the east, west or south, the dome can easily bee seen peaking over the treetops. It is said that our parish can even be seen from airplanes landing or flying out of Detroit Metropolitan Airport.

      At the time of its construction, the dome of 120 feet was the largest geodesic dome in Michigan. As you enter the church there is a large vestibule. This allows our community space to welcome and visit with each other before and after Mass.

      When you look into the dome, the structure of the roof can be seen. Each of the beams above are small; they are virtually 2 x 4’s laminated together. The beams are joined together, taking on the weight of the other beams. They depend on each other to stand and only together they are strong enough to support the roof. This network of beams symbolizes our community and how each of us must rely on others for support and strength. As individuals we cannot hold up the roof, but working together we can accomplish this feat.

            The clear glass in the windows connects what is happening outside the church to what occurs inside. It connects us to nature and our surroundings. We can see the change of the seasons and how they correspond to the seasons within the liturgical year. These clear windows also serve to remind us all that the world and its events are not isolated from our prayers, the sacred must also have its place in the world.

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