Marshall parish marks centennial Print E-mail
Around the Diocese
Written by Eileen Bender, For the Catholic Herald   
Wednesday, Oct. 15, 2008 -- 3:00 PM

MARSHALL -- From January 1908 to the present date, St. Mary of the Nativity Parish has been a very special place of worship and friendships for the 336 parish families who over the years have shared their time, talent, and love for our Lord with everyone who enters its doors.

Much credit for establishing our parish must be given to Fr. Francis X. Hess, who served as the pastor of St. Joseph Parish from 1891 until 1951.

Need for a new church

Father Hess saw the need for a Catholic church in Marshall and he, along with a committee of 12 men, obtained the permission from the then Archbishop Sebastian Messner of Milwaukee to find desirable property.

The first resident priest was Fr. Christian Nellan, who served St. Mary Parish from 1910 through 1938. Since his residency, 10 more wonderful and dedicated priests have served the people of St. Mary Parish. Each pastor in his own way and with his own special personality contributed greatly to the changes and growth of this parish.

Linked with Waterloo

In 2002, under the leadership of our current pastor, Fr. Tom Gillespie, St. Mary of the Nativity was linked with St. Joseph Parish in Waterloo, providing a solid base for shared faith and administrative responsibilities.

Fellowship, liturgy/worship, religious education, parochial schooling at St. Joseph School, and enhanced parish council roles have provided growth and participation. Building on this spiritual parish leadership, we will continue to grow in faith and grace as we celebrate our centennial year.

Celebration on October 25

All those wishing to attend this celebration are urged to join us on Saturday, Oct. 25, beginning with a special 5:30 p.m. liturgy celebrated with Bishop Robert C. Morlino.
Following Mass a chicken dinner ($10 per person) will be served in the parish hall. Anyone interested in attending may contact Eileen Bender at 920-478-3232 or Cheryl Lutz at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for reservations and/or more details.

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