Sacred Heart of Mary
       Roman Catholic Church

                             A Sanctuary of Sanctity
6739 South Boulder Road, Boulder, CO 80303
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  • September 1860: Reverend Joseph P. Machebeuf and Reverend John B. Raverdy left Santa Fe, New Mexico, for Denver City, Pike's Peak Territory.
  • 1861: Colorado became a territory carved out of Utah, New Mexico, Kansas, and Nebraska Territories.
  • January 7, 1862: Reverend Raverdy celebrated the first Holy Mass in Boulder County at the home of John and Marie DeBacker.
  • December 9, 1867: Father Machebeuf purchased 160 acres of land from homesteader, Daniel Delehant.
  • August 16, 1868: Colorado was part of the Santa Fe Diocese. Father Machebeuf was appointed Vicar Apostolic of the Colorado Territory.
  • 1872: Under the spiritual care of Reverend Thomas McGrath (with consent from Bishop Machebeuf) a frame structure was erected on the land purchased in 1867. This structure claimed the distinction of being the first Catholic Church in Boulder County.

  • 1873: The frame structure was completed.
  • 1874: Reverend Hugh Quigley was appointed to take charge, thus becoming the first resident pastor in Boulder County.
  • August 1, 1876: Colorado became the 38th state.
  • 1876: A parish was organized in downtown Boulder, Sacred Heart of Jesus, under the spiritual care of Father Reitmayr.
  • 1880's to early 1900's: Settlers from Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Austria, England, and Scotland became permanent parishioners. The South Boulder cemetery was the first and only consecrated Catholic burial ground in Boulder County, thus the variety of names.
  • 1887: Bishop Machebeuf granted permission (with approval of the Holy See) to the Benedictine Fathers to establish Saint Bernard's Monastery with jurisdiction over Boulder County.
  • July 1889: Bishop Machebeuf died and was succeeded by Bishop Nicholas C. Matz.
  • 1890: Reverend Henry Hohman was assigned to parish.
  • 1896: Benedictine priests left Boulder County to serve in Pueblo. Diocesan priests served the parish for several years.
  • Early 1900's: Saint Louis Parochial School and Business College was established in Louisville by Father Cyril Wettger and staffed by Benedictine sisters from Pennsylvania.
  • December 1909: Father Suitbert Rickert became first full time Benedictine pastor.
  • Summer 1910: Bridget O'Connor would ask the parish children to stop by her house on their way home after Mass on Sundays. The children never minded the longer walk because Bridget would have a large batch of fresh doughnuts. Perhaps that was the beginning of the current "doughnut Sunday."
  • 1911: Reverend Antonine Hintenach became the pastor who rode a motorcycle. He continued to say Mass in German (after regular Mass) until World War I came along.
  • Midsummer 1912: Since the parish was growing, a large building was needed. A building committee was formed. Later that year the old frame structure was sold to Paul Vercruysse for $168 with the understanding that the buyer could not take possession until the new church was completed.
  • April 13, 1913: The cornerstone for the new building was laid. Money-raising activities began that included all parishioners, from the youngest to the oldest. Total cost was $8,000. The most popular event, which became a traditional affair, was the summer-time dinner under the trees in the church yard. Doesn't this sound like the current "Spring Fling?"
  • August 23, 1913: The new church was dedicated.
  • 1916: Reverend George Brugger became pastor until 1919. World War I was raging and many parishioners were worried about their families in Europe.
  • After World War I: Reverend Regis Barret broke the long pattern of German pastors. He was Irish to the core. He was also responsible for building the rectory.
  • 1921: Reverend Antonine Hintenach returned for a 10-year term.
  • May 25, 1930: The big cross that's currently in the cemetery was unveiled and solemnly blessed before a crowd of 300 people.
  • 1931: During the Great Depression numerous priests served South Boulder, each for a short duration. Father Joseph Hannan compiled the following list: Leo Eichenlaub, Gilbert O'Maley, Justin McKernan, Raymond Layton, Nicholas Schwallie, and Urban Schnitzhofer.
  • June 20, 1934: Lady Abbess Benedicta, Head of the centuries-old Convent of Saint Walburga in Eichstat, Germany, purchased 150 acres from the Benedictine priests of Canon City. Mother Augustina and Sisters Boniface and Rita were assigned to run the farm.
  • 1938-1949: Father Robert Murray arrived and found a dwindling parish. He cleared up the existing debt of the parish, then made extensive repairs to the church and rectory.
  • 1945: First hall, named Luke Hall.
  • 1949-1955: Father Kevin Carr succeeded Father Robert Murray.
  • 1952: Archbishop Urban J. Vehr dedicated the new Convent of Saint Walburga.
  • 1955-1957: Father Francis Hornung succeeded Father Kevin Carr.
  • 1957-1966: Father Baldwin Haydock succeeded Father Francis Hornung.
  • 1962-1965: Second Vatican Council; many liturgical changes followed.
  • 1966: Father Joseph Hannan succeeded Father Baldwin Haydock. Father Joseph was responsible for establishing Mark Hall.
  • 1971: Abbott Edward Volmer succeeded Father Joseph Hannan. Abbott Edward was instrumental in setting up finances that footed the cost of the 1997-1999 building additions and renovations.
  • 1973: Sacred Heart of Mary Church celebrated its 100th anniversary as the oldest Catholic Church in Boulder County.
  • 1973 and 1985: Church was renovated with painting and carpeting.
  • 1973: Matthew Hall was added to Mark Hall.
  • 1979: John Hall was added to the other halls.
  • 1981: Administrative offices were added to the rectory.
  • 1982: Sacred Heart of Mary was one of the first churches in the Denver Archdiocese to purchase a computer.
  • 1983: Youth room and three classrooms added to south end of parish hall.
  • 1993: Father Andrew J. Kemberling succeeded Abbott Edward Volmer, who retired at the age of 85.
  • 1994: The Convent of Saint Walburga announced they were relocating. Father Andrew put into motion the wheels to purchase additional land to erect a new multi-purpose building. This also provided the opportunity to build an addition to the church to accommodate the growing needs of the parish. Renovations were also arranged for the halls, which included building a gymnasium. The convent retreat house (Marion House) was renovated as the new administration building.
  • September 7, 1997: A ground breaking ceremony was held for the new multi-purpose building.
  • Easter 1998: Mass was relocated to the new gymnasium while multi-purpose building was being completed and the addition began on the church.
  • July 1998: Mass was relocated to Saint Bernard Hall--the new multi-purpose building--named after the old monastery.
  • October 1998: Father Andrew Kemberling announced that the Benedictine priests would no longer be serving the parish.
  • February 1999: The parish moves into the renovated/enlarged church with the dedication on March 21, 1999.
  • June 1999: Father Dorino De Lazzer succeeded Father Andrew Kemberling.
  • June 2005: Father Michael Gass succeeded Father Dorino De Lazzer.
  • July 2008: Father Marcus Mallick succeeded Father Michael Gass.
  • December 2014: Father Cliff McMillan succeeded Father Marcus Mallick.

Included in the additions (1994 - 1999) are:

  • Boulders from the original building of the monastery form the base for the church's bell from the original frame building.
  • The statue of Mary, celebrating Abbott Edward's golden anniversary of priesthood and was originally located at the entrance of the cemetery, has been relocated to a special place between the church and the administration building.
  • The altar railing, removed after Vatican II, is displayed on the wall separating the church and the narthex.
  • Near the east entrance and protected by berms, a meditation garden has been established. It contains a pool, waterfall, and statue of Saint Francis of Assisi.
  • The courtyard between the church and Saint Bernard Hall has a statue of Saint Benedict.
  • Saint Bernard Hall has a diorama, in the east section, that depicts the history of the church.
  • A statue of Mother Theresa has been placed between the east entrance and the kitchen entrance of Saint Bernard Hall.
  • The memorial wall to the unborn at the very east end of the cemetary (2000).