Richard J. Malone, Bishop of Buffalo, presided at a liturgy on Sunday, June 3 to celebrate a ceremonial burning of the mortgage, marking the repayment of the loan used to construct the new church building between 2008 and 2010.
The total cost of the project was $7.1 million which included purchasing land and building a baseball diamond and soccer field. A mortgage of $1.3 million was obtained following a parish capital campaign. Donors and members of the Building Committee will be recognized at the Mass.
“I have been blessed to serve as pastor for the past 23 years and build upon the faith of thousands of Catholic parishioners who have worshipped in our first log cabin church, the 1865 chapel, and our new church,” Father Yetter said. “We share in a little bit of the Kingdom of God here in our parish as we prepare for heaven.”
Planning for the new church began in 2002, groundbreaking took place in October 2008 and the new church was dedicated on June 5, 2010 by Bishop Edward U. Kmiec. The church seats 1,000.
The legacy of St. Mary’s dates back to the mid 1830s when newly-ordained missionary Father John Neumann encouraged the people of Swormville to build a log cabin church so a priest could celebrate the Eucharist. The second church was competed in 1866 just as soldiers were retuning from the Civil War.