St. Andrew Catholic Church
a roman catholic church of the salina diocese
1859 - First Mass at Margaret Callahan's cabin.
1866 - Fr. Louis Dumortier, S.J. celebrates early Masses in
1874 - First St. Andrew Church cornerstone laid Nov. 30 St.
Andrew feast day.
1875 - Bishop Fink of Leavenworth celebrates First Mass
July 5, Fr. Philip Sholes pastor.
1877 - Quick succession of Fr. Carius, Fr. Fogarty,
Fr. Hayden, Fr. McNamara, and Fr. McAuliff.
1880 - Fr. John O'Leary, as first resident pastor, builds first
Fr. O'Leary also helps Mother Bernard Sheridan,
CSJ build Mount St. Joseph Academy,
north of Abilene.
1893 - Another quick series of priests: Fr. Eugene
Bononcini, Fr. Heller, Fr. Shields, Fr. Regan,
Fr. Horgan, and Fr. Conway.
1894 - St. Andrew's first bell installed - 1500 lb. bell is
installed in current church.
1910 - Fr. Thomas O'Reilly assumes pastorate.
1915 - Parish razes first church and constructs the current
1916 - Cornerstone is laid in the spring.
1917 - Bishop Cunningham of Concordia consecrates
The $60,000 structure is completely paid for then.
1930 - Msgr. C. J. Roche assumes pastorate.
1936 - Knights of Columbus hand dig church basement.
This is used as the social center for the next sixty
1939 - New church furnace installed.
1959 - St. Andrew School is built.
Sr. Stanislaus Porter, CSJ serves as first principal.
1962 - Msgr. Roche dies.
Fr. Alvin Werth serves as Administrator in interim.
Msgr. C. J. Brown is the new pastor.
He and Stan Veal build new altars and communion
rail of solid imported walnut.
1966 - Msgr. Alfred Wasinger assumes pastorate. He also heads Catholic
Charities. He implements many Vatican 11 changes.
1981 - Fr. John Moeder is the new pastor.
He builds the concrete parking lot, refurbishes the church windows
and installs new church doors.
He also starts the school auction, initiates the cemetery collection, and
establishes the church endowment.
1990 - Fr. Richard Lutgen follows as pastor at St. Andrew, as well as at St.
Michael's in Chapman.
1992 - Fr. Henry Baxa is the new pastor.
1993 - Fr. Henry Baxa also serves as
pastor of Immaculate Conception
St. Andrew Church interior is
1994 - Fr. Louis Mattas assumes
1997 - St. Andrew Parish Center is built.
1997 - New rectory is built at
201 SW Fourth St.
1999 - Fr. Randall Weber becomes the new pastor. He inaugurates school
endowment and concentrates on liturgical renewal.
He installs a new sound system connecting the church and Parish
Center, thus handling an overflow crowd.
2004 - Fr. Henry Baxa returns as pastor.
He also serves as the pastor of St. Michael's in Chapman.
The church basement is renovated.
A new Allen organ piano is purchased for liturgical worshi
2005 - Church flooring is resurfaced with carpet and tile along with other
refurbishing. Sidewalks between the church and parish center are
rebuilt, along with school sidewalk and parking lot repair.
Parochial Vicars (Associate Pastors) serving St. Andrew's include Fr. Carl Kramer, Fr. John Moeder, Fr. Eugene Stehno, Fr. Alvin Werth, Fr. Basil Torrez, Fr. Norman Leiker, Fr. Jerome Morgan, Fr. Robert Reif, Fr. James Dallen, Fr. William Dunphy, and Fr. Chris Conklin.
Vocations to Priesthood and Consecrated Life
St. Andrew parishioners ordained priests include Fr. Roger Hough in 1964, Fr. Chris Conklin in 1973, Fr. Mark Wesely
in 1994, and Fr. Jarrett Konrade in 2005.
Brother Chris Wesely, OSB is a Benedictine
monk at Blue Cloud Abbey, South Dakota.
Daughters of the parish in consecrated
religious life include Sr. Harriet Baldwin, CSJ,
Sr. Marie Coleman, CSJ, Sr. Mary Mark
Whitehair, CSJ, Sr. Nancy Meade, CSJ,
and Sr. Ann Wylder, CSJ.
Celebrating 120 years of Catholic Education in Abilene
St. Joseph Orphanage Home and School Highlights
1885 - Sisters of St. Joseph in Wichita build and staff Mount St. Joseph
1912 - Concordia (now Salina) Diocese purchases facility.
1915 - Reconversion of facility is completed. St. Joseph Home and School is
Sister of St. Joseph in Cordia staff.
1958 - St. Joseph Home and School closes. This concludes the 73 year
1959 - Present St. Andrew Elementary School and CRE Catechetical