Parish History

Prayer of Saint Pius X Catholic Church

O God, Almighty Father, you gather this parish church in Jesus Christ, your Son. Here, you call us to be a priestly people, a household of faith, a temple of your Holy Spirit, a light shining from the hilltop. As with faithful generations past, you now send us to labor in the vineyard of the Kingdom. Grace our minds and hearts and hands with your Spirit to do the work you place before us. So that, building on the one foundation which is Christ, we may accomplish your will, the service to which you have called us. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom all good things come. Amen.

Pastors of St. Pius Tenth Church

Rev. Robert T. Wilson 1957 – 1963
Rev. George Boehmicke 1963 – 1966
Rev. Clarence Pettit 1966 – 1971
Rev. Paul P. Powell 1971 – 1976
Rev. Robert T. Wilson 1976 – 1981
Rev. Gerald J. Glahn 1981 – 1989
Rev. Bruce Fogle 1989 – 1992
Rev. Larry McBride 1992 – 2000
Rev. Richard C. Meredith 2000 – 2011
Rev. Julian Ibemere 2011 -

Associate Pastors or Priest-in-Residence

Rev. Joseph Mills Rev. Anthony Bickett
Rev. Robert Whelan Rev. Anthony Ziegler
Rev. Thomas Murphy Rev John Bartolomucci
Rev. Leonard Alvey Rev. Maury Riney
Rev. William Borntraeger Rev. Len Arcilesi
Rev. Peter Lauzon Rev. Steve Ulrich

The Beginning 1957 – 59

In early 1957 rumors spread in the Owensboro Catholic Diocese of the plans being made for the building of a new church in the Owensboro area.  Sts. Joseph and Paul Church parish community had grown over the years to the extent that it was felt that the eastern portion of the parish should split away and form a new church community. The Diocese of Owensboro purchased 13.1 acres of land from Mr. R. C. and Dora Day Blocker, Sr. for $132,000.00.  Soon after, Father George Boehmicke began visiting families who were officially members of Sts. Joseph and Paul Parish of Owensboro.

The families formed the "Christian Family Movement" for this new parish, becoming the very first members of the new parish.  Boundaries were dawn and, at times, neighbors on one side of the road remained in Sts. Joseph and Paul parish while those on the other side became members of the new  parish. Construction of the new church began in 1957 on a hill above Highway 60 East across the road from the Levy Memorial Boys Home.  Members of the new parish continued to give their donations to Sts. Joseph and Paul where the pastor would take the funds given by these families and send them to the new parish.  Families soon began to visit the construction site to view the progress as if it were their own home being built.

 The new parish was named in honor of Pope Pius X, who was canonized a saint in May 1954.  The congregation of St. Pius X Parish celebrated it's first Mass and Dedication on December 27, 1957.  A choir had been formed during the construction period and an impressive group sang on this momentous occasion. Officiating at the Mass was Bishop Francis R. Cotton assisted by the newly appointed pastor, Rev. Robert T. Wilson.  Fr. Wilson had high hopes and strong words of  encouragement for his new congregation that cold evening.  All listened with wide-eyed curiosity hoping for a magic phrase to enthuse them.  Men of the parish volunteered as altar servers that evening.   Lasting friendships were formed, beginning with the choir and continuing on when the Altar Society, the Holy Name Society, and the St. Vincent De Paul Society were formed that year.

A rocky road was ahead.  The debt of the new parish community was great and the resources were limited.  Many of the parishioners were large middle class working families, farmers and factory workers.   Fr. Wilson proved to be a good and adaptable leader.  Father's commitment to reducing the debt was such that parishioners joked that "if your child swallows a nickel, don't call a doctor, call Fr. Wilson!"  Since there was no rectory when the church was built,  Fr. Wilson's first home was above the school in what would later become the convent.  He lived there until five Ursuline Sisters arrived.  He then took up residence in the school, taking two classrooms as his home.    The generosity of the congregation was demonstrated that very evening of dedication when many furnishings were donated.

The early years saw the beginning of our annual picnic, as well as numerous smorgasbords, fish fries and chili suppers.  The first smorgasbord was a tremendous success, netting $810.00, a substantial sum of money in 1958.  Fr. Wilson enjoyed those activities, not only because of the monetary gain, but also because of the fellowship the events created.

1958 brought the formation of Home & School Association, and St Pius opened the doors of it's school on September 2, 1958.  The first faculty was made up of five Ursuline Sisters from Mt St Joseph.  Sr. Cecilia Jean Lonergan was the first principal and continued in that capacity for six years.  Because it was a small school, several classrooms housed two grades.  The nuns lived above the school in the convent.  It has been reported that due to severe restrictions on outside recreational activity, roller-skating and bike riding was done in the school and convent halls.  The hundreds of  graduates and staff of St. Pius Grade school have made substantial contributions to the community over the years, the more notable being two college presidents, Sister Vivian Marie Bowles (teacher) and Sister Suzanne Sims (student).

Next . . . the 1960s.