A Message from Fr. Yetter
Fall ia a beautiful time of year in East Amherst, Clarence, and Lockport as we witness again the change of seasons and prepare for winter that is not too far ahead. Parish life here at St. Mary’s increases as we enter this time with school, life long faith formation programs, and many parish ministries that pick up momentum after the summer.
We have a long history here at St. Mary’s of almost 170 years since our official founding in 1849. Unofficially we began under the direction of missionary priest Father John Neumann in 1836. He became a saint of the Catholic church in 1977 after serving here, in Baltimore, and in Philadelphia. We are one of the few parishes in the United States that can trace our heritage formally to a saint of the Roman Catholic Church. We have been blessed during these years in so many ways. We have grown from a time when Mass was celebrated in homes and barns of the area in the 1830s and 40s to our log cabin church of the 1940s. This was the parish church until our Civil War-era church was completed in 1865 when the parish had 80 families as members. This lasted until 2010 when our new church was built and now the parish has 2,700 registered households and over 7,000 people who make up St. Mary’s parish. Even though we have grown so much we still strive to be a warm and welcoming community for so many people who visit us and those who become new members of our congregation.
I invite you to look over our newly redesigned website and learn about the many aspects of St. Mary’s parish. You can also find us on Facebook at StMarySworm and on Twitter at StMarySV. Our mission statement calls us together as a worshipping community who through our worship, our educational programs and our outreach help to spread in a small way the building up of God’s kingdom.