St. Roch’s History
During the influenza epidemic of 1918-1920 Archbishop Joseph Chartrand, Archbishop of Indianapolis, promised to establish the next parish in the diocese in honor of St. Roch, the Patron Saint against contagious diseases. In 1922, Saint Roch Parish was founded and began with forty families.
The building committee, on February 28th, 1922, decided on a combination church and school building with a basement, and a first and second story. The basement would be built which would serve as a temporary place of worship. Construction began in July of 1922, and at midnight, December 25th, 1922, approximately 380 parishioners and friends of the parish witnessed the historical First Mass celebrated by Father Matthew Schmitz at a temporary altar erected in the basement.
In 1924, the parishioners felt that a catholic school was urgently needed. Therefore, work on the two additional stories began immediately, and in the summer of 1924, the church was moved from the basement to the first floor of the newly constructed structure.
On June 17th, 1951, a long awaited dream was realized, as ground was broken for the new church. The new church, a stately colonial building made of St. Meinrad sandstone, was dedicated on October 19th, 1951.
In 1958, plans were underway for the construction of a new school, kitchen, and hall. This new structure, containing eight additional classrooms and a cafeteria was dedicated on September 27th, 1959.
Since 1997, we have experienced a growth in our parish population. We have presently 1060 households registered in our Parish. Also, we have been able to make many improvements in our school and church facilities. Some of those improvements would include a new heating and air-conditioning system, and painting both the exterior and interior of the church. Many replacements and improvements have taken place in our school as well, such as renovation of all restrooms, computer lab and computers in each classroom, new flooring in many classrooms, new heating and air-conditioning units in each classroom. A major addition to our Parish has been the building of our Parish Life Center in 2000 which houses three meeting rooms, a large kitchen, and a gymnasium.
In 2006, we completed the Legacy for Our Mission Capital Campaign for the Renovation and Restoration of our Church. We raised funds to put in a new ceiling, new lighting, a porcelain tile floor, beautiful stained glass windows, restoration of the pews and restoration of the barrel ceiling. All of these improvements have been such a wonderful way to celebrate the growth of our parish and to honor Christ and our place of worship.
Many volunteers work in the various committees, organizations and boards in our parish. Adult education classes, spiritual enrichment programs, family programs and special Parish Celebrations and Events continue to form us as a family of St. Roch Parish.