From this view, the image above appears to be just your typical small town family place of worship. But, once inside, that viewpoint drastically changes. I had the pleasure of visiting St. Ann's Parish Church on 10 July 2008, while on a mission to not only stand in the same locations as some of my paternal ancestors, but to try to capture images, and a sense of connectedness. St. Ann's is located on Rte. 11, the main road that runs through the very small town of Mooers Forks, Clinton County, New York. I requested and was given complete autonomy to take not only exterior, but also many interior shots. The church was empty on that day, so I was alone with my camera and my thoughts. Even now as I gaze upon this picture, I remember, almost hearing the voices and sounds of family and community coming together in good times and bad for many generations.
In fact, many of the families that attended St. Ann's, can be found buried in the cemetery bearing the same name, also located in Mooers Forks. Though simple in stature, and construction, the old wooden doors open up to a beautiful, but humble interior. There are elegantly framed Stations of the Cross lining the walls, and the back wall has a glassed-in case that displays engraved plaques of many longtime family parish members. As I walked quietly around the inside, I felt honored to be descended from a place and time where family and traditions and beliefs were respected.