Southwestern Indiana's Catholic Community Newspaper

New Parishes Welcome Families To First Weekend Masses

By By Tim Lilley The Message Editor
Father Alex Zenthoefer, pastor of Annunciation of the Lord Parish, censes the altar at the beginning of Mass July 5 at Holy Spirit Church.


Last weekend (July 5-6), eight new parishes in the Diocese of Evansville welcomed worshippers to their first weekend Masses. The parishes came to life July 1 as part of the first of the Diocesan Strategic Plan.

Father Alex Zenthoefer celebrated one of the first new-parish Masses – the 4 p.m. Anticipatory Mass July 5 for Annunciation of the Lord Parish in Evansville. He said Mass at Holy Spirit Church, which joins Christ the King Church as Annunciation Parish worship sites. Father Alex sought and received permission from Bishop Charles C. Thompson to celebrate the Votive Mass of the Annunciation of the Lord instead of the normal liturgy for last weekend, the 14th Sunday of Ordinary Time.

In his homily, Father Alex talked about being on a trip with some friends, and of having a youngster ask him questions as if he himself were God. The key, he said, was that the innocent youngster was able to embrace the idea that God was there. “God invades reality,” he said.

“Some believe, however, that if God is close to us, we have to behave. We begin to consider the presence of God as a burden; and that is a sad and terrible way to see it.”

He explained that God’s invasion of reality has led to masterpieces in art and music. “That presence led the founders of Christ the King to build a Catholic church – at that time – literally in a field in the middle of nowhere. It led other Catholics to convert a horse barn into this Holy Spirit Church.

“Today,” Father Alex added, “He is calling us to follow Him in a different way as the family of Annunciation Parish. We can ignore Him, or we can be like Mary and say, ‘be it done to me according to thy word.’

Seven other parishes celebrated their first weekend Masses July 5-6, including:

Sts. Mary and John the Apostle Parish, also in Evansville, created by the merger of St. Mary Parish and St. John the Apostle Parish.

St. Peter Parish in Montgomery, created by the merger of All Saints Parish in Cannelburg and St. Peter.

St. Martin I Parish in Chrisney, created by the merger of St. John Chrysostom Parish in New Boston and St. Martin I.

St. Francis Xavier Parish in Poseyville, created by the merger of Holy Angels Parish in New Harmony and St. Francis Xavier. St. Wendel Parish in St. Wendel will link with the new St. Francis Xavier Parish – continuing a link that had been in place between the two parishes – also effective July 1.

St. Boniface Parish in Evansville, created by the merger of St. Agnes, Virgin and Martyr Parish; Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish; and St. Boniface.

St. Clement Parish in Boonville, created by the merger of St. Rupert Parish in Red Brush and St. Clement.

St. John the Evangelist Parish in Loogootee, created by the merger of St. Martin of Tours Parish in Whitfield; Immaculate Conception Parish in Shoals; St. Joseph Parish in Bramble; and St. John the Evangelist.