St. Mary's Catholic Church

Odessa, Texas 79761

History of St. Mary's Catholic Church
by: St. Mary's Web Editor 10/21/19 11:40am


The history and growth of the Catholic Church in Odessa began in 1932 when the five Catholic families in the city traveled to Midland for Mass. In that year, Rev. A Sirios was in charge of services for three towns: Stanton, Midland and Odessa.

From that small beginning the Catholic rise in population and in church growth rivaled the actual growth of the city itself. Odessa Catholics held the first Mass in 1937 in the old Legion Hall at Fourth Street and Alleghaney.

Celebration of Mass was continued there until a small building was erected at Fifth Street and Washington, at a cost of $10,000. St. Mary's became a parish in 1938 with Rev. Peter Morsch as its first pastor.

Under the direction of Rev. William Lensing, the church constructed one of the city's most beautiful edifices. The Parish Hall on East 18th Street and North Muskingum was constructed in 1951, followed by St. Mary's Catholic Church and rectory at East 18th Street and North Adams in 1955.

In 1961, St. Mary's School was opened in a generous-sized building at 1703 North Adams. Lay Extension Volunteers served as the first teachers. The Franciscan Sisters were the first religious order to staff the school. Students throughout the city enrolled in pre-kindergarten through the sixth grade.

St. Mary's School offers certified teachers, core curriculum, prayer and community, a volunteer-staffed library and computers for the children, with volunteers serving in many other areas. Organizations connected with the school are the School Board, Home and School Organization as well as a Fundraising Committee. Fund-raisers, such as the Fall Festival, 5K Run, International Day and the Athletic Dept. help support the school.

In October 1976, the dedication of the new Activities Building was held. The addition consisted of a large activities room, reception room with its own kitchen, den, three classrooms, nursery and a Religious Education Office. The nursery area is now the Church office and many of the rooms serve a different purpose today.

The Parish has been served by a Parish Council since 1976. There is one Legion of Mary group promoting prayer, spiritual works and service through the lay apostolate. There is an active Catholic Women's Organization, Daughters of Mary an organization and the Knights of Columbus Council #3203. A Religious Education Program serves the children and Bible study is conducted for adults. Ministries in the parish include ushers, Mass coordinators, Eucharistic ministers, lectors, commentators, sacristy and Sanctuary workers.

An organization with a long history of service to the community has been the Thrift Store, which has now evolved into Catholic Charities of Odessa. Throughout its existence, it has aided in supplying many material necessities to the people of the Church and the community.

The people of St. Mary's Church are proud of their community and pray that through the help of Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Blessed Mother, it will continue to grow in every way.

Pastors of St. Mary's Church: 1938 to 2018

Rev. Peter Morsch                            
Rev. Joseph H. Walter
Rev. Wilmer Riechel
Rev. William Lensing
Rev. John Lavin

Rev. Arnold Boeding
Rev. Benedict Zientek
Rev. Msgr. Andrew C. Marthaler
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. James P. Bridges

Rev. Kevin J. Heyburn
Rev. Robert N. Bush
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. Santiago Udayar
Rev. Hilary Ihedioha
Rev. Bernard Getigan


St. Mary's Catholic Church

Odessa, Texas 79761

History of St. Mary's Catholic Church
by: St. Mary's Web Editor 10/21/19 11:40am

by: St. Mary's Web Editor


The history and growth of the Catholic Church in Odessa began in 1932 when the five Catholic families in the city traveled to Midland for Mass. In that year, Rev. A Sirios was in charge of services for three towns: Stanton, Midland and Odessa.

From that small beginning the Catholic rise in population and in church growth rivaled the actual growth of the city itself. Odessa Catholics held the first Mass in 1937 in the old Legion Hall at Fourth Street and Alleghaney.

Celebration of Mass was continued there until a small building was erected at Fifth Street and Washington, at a cost of $10,000. St. Mary's became a parish in 1938 with Rev. Peter Morsch as its first pastor.

Under the direction of Rev. William Lensing, the church constructed one of the city's most beautiful edifices. The Parish Hall on East 18th Street and North Muskingum was constructed in 1951, followed by St. Mary's Catholic Church and rectory at East 18th Street and North Adams in 1955.

In 1961, St. Mary's School was opened in a generous-sized building at 1703 North Adams. Lay Extension Volunteers served as the first teachers. The Franciscan Sisters were the first religious order to staff the school. Students throughout the city enrolled in pre-kindergarten through the sixth grade.

St. Mary's School offers certified teachers, core curriculum, prayer and community, a volunteer-staffed library and computers for the children, with volunteers serving in many other areas. Organizations connected with the school are the School Board, Home and School Organization as well as a Fundraising Committee. Fund-raisers, such as the Fall Festival, 5K Run, International Day and the Athletic Dept. help support the school.

In October 1976, the dedication of the new Activities Building was held. The addition consisted of a large activities room, reception room with its own kitchen, den, three classrooms, nursery and a Religious Education Office. The nursery area is now the Church office and many of the rooms serve a different purpose today.

The Parish has been served by a Parish Council since 1976. There is one Legion of Mary group promoting prayer, spiritual works and service through the lay apostolate. There is an active Catholic Women's Organization, Daughters of Mary an organization and the Knights of Columbus Council #3203. A Religious Education Program serves the children and Bible study is conducted for adults. Ministries in the parish include ushers, Mass coordinators, Eucharistic ministers, lectors, commentators, sacristy and Sanctuary workers.

An organization with a long history of service to the community has been the Thrift Store, which has now evolved into Catholic Charities of Odessa. Throughout its existence, it has aided in supplying many material necessities to the people of the Church and the community.

The people of St. Mary's Church are proud of their community and pray that through the help of Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Blessed Mother, it will continue to grow in every way.

Pastors of St. Mary's Church: 1938 to 2018

Rev. Peter Morsch                            
Rev. Joseph H. Walter
Rev. Wilmer Riechel
Rev. William Lensing
Rev. John Lavin

Rev. Arnold Boeding
Rev. Benedict Zientek
Rev. Msgr. Andrew C. Marthaler
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. James P. Bridges

Rev. Kevin J. Heyburn
Rev. Robert N. Bush
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. Santiago Udayar
Rev. Hilary Ihedioha
Rev. Bernard Getigan

St. Mary's Catholic
Church

Odessa, Texas 79761

History of St. Mary's Catholic Church
by: St. Mary's Web Editor 10/21/19 11:40am


The history and growth of the Catholic Church in Odessa began in 1932 when the five Catholic families in the city traveled to Midland for Mass. In that year, Rev. A Sirios was in charge of services for three towns: Stanton, Midland and Odessa.

From that small beginning the Catholic rise in population and in church growth rivaled the actual growth of the city itself. Odessa Catholics held the first Mass in 1937 in the old Legion Hall at Fourth Street and Alleghaney.

Celebration of Mass was continued there until a small building was erected at Fifth Street and Washington, at a cost of $10,000. St. Mary's became a parish in 1938 with Rev. Peter Morsch as its first pastor.

Under the direction of Rev. William Lensing, the church constructed one of the city's most beautiful edifices. The Parish Hall on East 18th Street and North Muskingum was constructed in 1951, followed by St. Mary's Catholic Church and rectory at East 18th Street and North Adams in 1955.

In 1961, St. Mary's School was opened in a generous-sized building at 1703 North Adams. Lay Extension Volunteers served as the first teachers. The Franciscan Sisters were the first religious order to staff the school. Students throughout the city enrolled in pre-kindergarten through the sixth grade.

St. Mary's School offers certified teachers, core curriculum, prayer and community, a volunteer-staffed library and computers for the children, with volunteers serving in many other areas. Organizations connected with the school are the School Board, Home and School Organization as well as a Fundraising Committee. Fund-raisers, such as the Fall Festival, 5K Run, International Day and the Athletic Dept. help support the school.

In October 1976, the dedication of the new Activities Building was held. The addition consisted of a large activities room, reception room with its own kitchen, den, three classrooms, nursery and a Religious Education Office. The nursery area is now the Church office and many of the rooms serve a different purpose today.

The Parish has been served by a Parish Council since 1976. There is one Legion of Mary group promoting prayer, spiritual works and service through the lay apostolate. There is an active Catholic Women's Organization, Daughters of Mary an organization and the Knights of Columbus Council #3203. A Religious Education Program serves the children and Bible study is conducted for adults. Ministries in the parish include ushers, Mass coordinators, Eucharistic ministers, lectors, commentators, sacristy and Sanctuary workers.

An organization with a long history of service to the community has been the Thrift Store, which has now evolved into Catholic Charities of Odessa. Throughout its existence, it has aided in supplying many material necessities to the people of the Church and the community.

The people of St. Mary's Church are proud of their community and pray that through the help of Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Blessed Mother, it will continue to grow in every way.

Pastors of St. Mary's Church: 1938 to 2018

Rev. Peter Morsch                            
Rev. Joseph H. Walter
Rev. Wilmer Riechel
Rev. William Lensing
Rev. John Lavin

Rev. Arnold Boeding
Rev. Benedict Zientek
Rev. Msgr. Andrew C. Marthaler
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. James P. Bridges

Rev. Kevin J. Heyburn
Rev. Robert N. Bush
Rev. Francis X. Frey
Rev. Santiago Udayar
Rev. Hilary Ihedioha
Rev. Bernard Getigan