The History of St Kathryn's
Before there was a parish church at the city of Ogilvie, the few Catholic families living around that area attended
religious services at St. Mary’s Church in Mora until the year 1946 when the first parish church was established there.
To begin with, Mass was offered from 1920-1925 by Fr. John Funk on the Mondays of Lent in the home of John
Skluzacek. In 1946 a group of men met with Bishop Peter Bartholome, requesting that a parish be established in
Ogilvie. The men that formed the committee were Robert Folsom, Ernest Chouinard, G.G. Klatt, John Weisner, and
Russell Black. Permission was granted and the parish was incorporated on July 13, 1946. The Bishop named the new
parish in honor of Kateri Tekakwitha, a Mohawk Indian maiden, who was known as the “Lily of the Mohawks”
because of her saintly life. The Bishop felt that one parish in the Diocese of St. Cloud, home of Ojibwa people, should
honor their presence.
Having received the good news, it took little time for the people of the new parish to purchase land in the village of
Ogilvie and also a frame schoolhouse measuring 40 square feet. The schoolhouse was moved from the country and
paced on the new site. Men of the parish renovated the building, converting it into a church. The following year the
first pastor, Fr. Vincent Huebsch, took residence and on Feb. 16, 1947 he offered the first Mass in the new church. In
the course of the following year, a sanctuary, sacristy, and entrance were added to the building. The rectory purchased
for $5,000 was used until sold in 1972.
St. Kathryn’s was been served by: Fr. Vincent Huebsch 1947-1952, Fr. Roscoe Finnegan 1952-1955, Fr. Joseph Linn
1955-1958, Fr. Peter Snyers 1958-1965, Fr. Daniel Majerus 1965-1966, Fr. Leo Revring 1966-1968.
Then in 1969 St. Kathryn’s was made a sister parish to St. Mary’s in Mora and has shared a pastor with them until the
present time. Fr. Norbert Hinnenkamp 1968-1970, Fr. Richard Wey 1970-1981, Fr. Eugene Belair 1981-1998, Fr.
William Vos 1998-2005.
In May 1999, preliminary discussion began concerning the need to improve the current facility or construct a new
facility. Of greatest concern were accessibility, parking, space for religious education, and space more conducive to
liturgy. After receiving estimates for renovation to solve the problems, it was decided that the money could be better
used to construct a new parish facility.
Thus plans went forward; land was purchased on County Road 10 just inside city limits. Designs were gathered from
several firms. Final design chosen was from Hagemeister and Mack Architects. Donlar Construction of St. Cloud was
hired for the project. Dedication of the new church was on December 28, 2003.
In 2005 Bishop John Kinney appointed Rita Clasemann as Parish Life Coordinator with Fr. Eugene Plaisted OSC
serving as Sacramental Minister.
|A young Mohawk woman who gave her life to Christ,
Kateri Tekawitha lived a life dedicated to prayer,
penance, and care for the sick and aged. She died in 1680
at age 24. Her final words were, "Jesus, I love you!" We
honor her as a model of faith today.