MICHIGAN MURDER: The 1907 Murder of Sister Janina
In the practically non-existent village of Isadore, the Holy Rosary Church overlooks what was once a little community. And to this day, anyone who's left in the area knows the sinister secret that the local church holds.
The first version of the church was made of wood and built in 1883. By 1917, Father Edward Podlaszewski was about to replace the 34-year-old church with a brand new structure. But then, townspeople became upset and revealed to the priest that a nun had been murdered and buried in the basement back in 1907...and if a new church was going to be constructed, her body might be found and the discovery could scandalize the town.
The nun, Sister Mary Janina, came up missing in 1907 and most everyone in town was in on the search, including bloodhounds and even a clairvoyant. Father Edward was dead set to find Sister Janina's body.....and he did. She was found buried underneath a pile of wood.
But how did he find the body?
Another priest, Father Andrew Bieniawski, is believed to have impregnated Sister Janina. Father Andrew's housekeeper, Stella, evidently jealous, murdered Sister Janina and, in doing so, her unborn baby. Some time later, upon hearing about Stella's confession, Father Edward discovered the skeletons and had them secretly buried at the foot of the large cross in the cemetery next door.
BUT THAT AIN'T ALL.
It seems Father Edward was having a fling with his own teenage housekeeper, who gave birth to his baby. They were attempting to secretly put the baby up for adoption when he revealed to her about his discovery of the skeletons and the secret burial. She in turn told her father, a policeman and Father Andrew's housekeeper Stella was sought out and arrested. (Are you confused yet?)
Stella was released from prison in 1927 and spent the rest of her life as a housekeeper & cook at a Wisconsin convent.
Some say Sister Janina's bones were later buried in Detroit, but many believe she's right back where she should be, at the foot of the cross in the cemetery down the road from the church.
There was even a movie made in 1979 about this event titled "The Runner Stumbles" starring Dick van Dyke and Kathleen Quinlan.
Check out the photo gallery to see where you can visit the area for yourself...the church is located on the corner of S. Schomberg & S. French, the site of the ghost town of Isadore.
But don't mention this to any resident you might come across.
That may not go over well....