St. Bridget to Mark 175th Anniversary - Missourian Article
Nov 11, 2016
St. Bridget to Mark 175th Anniversary
By Pauline Masson, Pacific Missourian Editor
The public is invited to share in the 175th anniversary celebration of St. Bridget’s Catholic Church Sunday, Nov. 13.
A day of events to commemorate the original parish opening will take place in the school gymnasium.
Festivities will begin with 10 a.m. Mass celebrated by Archbishop Robert Carlson and continue until 6 p.m.
A country store will offer apple butter, candy, baked goods, jellies and jams and craft items. Two quilts, made by St. Bridget quilters, will be raffled. An array of games and activities for children is planned.
Lou Brown chairs the committee that is organizing the celebration, aided by JoAnn Brown, Father Jim Holbrook, Kathleen Gloeckler, Kris Murphy and Laura Page.
St. Bridget Parish has been a part of the woof and warp of the community since the log Downpatrick church was built north of Pacific in 1842.
The first brick church, located near the west entrance of present-day St. Bridget School, was opened in 1867 and the parish has been part of the community fabric since.
The current brick church was built in 1961.
St. Bridget Catholic School opened its doors in 1885. Classes were held in the two-story frame building that still stands above the stone wall at the corner of West Union and Third streets.
No one knows exactly how old the building is, but it had already completed one life as a family residence when Father John Hennes acquired it to fulfill his dream of a parochial school for St. Bridget.
In 1950, when the new brick schoolhouse was built, the frame building was remodeled into a convent for the School Sisters of Notre Dame, the fourth order of nuns to teach at St. Bridget.
The two-story structure was moved from South Fourth Street, near present-day Bruns Monument Company, and remodeled into classrooms.
In late 2015 and early 2016, the structure was again restored and reclaimed as a classroom for the fifth-grade class, as well as music and art classes for the entire school.