St. Mary's Catholic Church will be having a special Anniversary Mass at 10 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 13, in observance of the 100th anniversary of the consecration of the church building at Fourth and Wooster streets, Marietta.
There will also be an open house from 2 to 4 p.m. the same day at the church. Refreshments will be served in the church social hall and guided tours of the newly renovated church will be offered every half hour.
The consecration of the building was "a day of great joy for the zealous and beloved pastor, Rev. F.M. Woesman, and his beloved flock, in that it witnessed the fruition of the hopes and labors of years," according to an article in the Catholic Columbian.
The day began with solemn High Mass in the old church and continued with a long procession, headed by a brass band, to the new church. As worshipers entered the new church building the new chimes from the tall bell towers rang out and the new pipe organ was used for the first time for public worship.
It was estimated that the church was filled to capacity with more than 1,000 people turned away. The Pontifical Mass was celebrated by Bishop Hartley and as many as 15 priests assisted at the Mass or were present in the sanctuary.
The first Mass in Marietta was held in 1749 and was offered by the Rev. Joseph Peter de Bonnecamp, S.J. The first church was erected in 1838. Catholic education was first attempted in 1855 by Father O'Neill. In 1895, the school building at South Fourth Street was erected and was in use at the time of the dedication.
"We admire the courage, dedication and love of God that these early Catholic settlers exhibited," said Amy Brockett, a member of the St. Mary Parish advisory committee. "We have recently completed an extensive renovation project to preserve and enhance the vision these faithful people had, to uplift our souls and give glory to God when we enter the doors of our beautiful church building of St. Mary of the Assumption."