History of Sacred Heart Church
The Church of the Sacred Heart was begun in the late 1800's with Father Krebs, who started many missions in the area, holding Mass in private homes. Catholics around Caro leased the C. A. Young building for Church services in 1879. In 1893, it became too expensive for so few to maintain and parishioners scattered to attend neighboring parishes.
The first Sacred Heart Church was built in 1902 on the corner of Frank and Hooper Streets and was serviced as a mission of Reese. Soon after the completion of the rectory, Fr. John Parker was appointed resident priest. Caro State Hospital (now Caro Regional Center) was then assigned as a mission of Caro. Fr. Parker was appointed on February 19, 1933 and remained here until his death in July 1936.
Church services are currently held in our unique wedge-shaped contemporary Gothic Church which opened for mid-night Christmas Mass in 1963. Fr. Isidore Mikulski, pastor from 1959 to 1968, actually designed many of the interior and exterior features. Large areas of stained glass symbolizing each of the Twelve Promises of Christ that were given to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in the 1670's. She was a French nun and Jesus called her "the Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart" and the Heiress "of all its treasures". These Twelve Promises are given to all who honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
History of St. Joseph Church
The mission of St. Joseph, Mayville, was established by the Most Reverend Stephen Woznicki, D.D., Bishop of Saginaw, on October 16, 1951. Father Sigmund Haremski was named the first pastor, administering the mission from St. Michael, Wilmot.
Organizational meetings were held in the Mayville Mayfair movie theatre. George Fehrenbach, a Catholic who owned the building, offered its use for church services. The first mass was offered in the theatre on October 28, 1951, the feast of Christ the King. The parish purchased the theatre from Michael McSherry, Joseph Kowalski, Emmet Lucas, George Fehrenbach, and Nicholas Stelizk.
On August 27, 1956, Fr. Floyd J Welna was appointed pastor of St. Michael and St. Joseph parishes. Under his administration the debt on the theatre building was paid off, and immediately, a building fund for a permanent church was begun. For this purpose, 20 acres of property on M-24 was purchased.
Bishop Woznicki appointed Father Raymond Pilarski as pastor of St. Michael and St. Joseph parishes on June 1, 1960 a post he held for the following eight years, making him the pastor with the longest record of service to date. Father Pilarski made immediate plans for a new permanent church. A successful pledge drive was held during which the parishioners promised to nearly triple the normal income of the parish. Plans were completed by December, 196 and architects Morris and Wesolek of Bay City were hired to complete details for the new church with groundbreaking ceremonies being held on June 10, 1962 on the $100,000 church.
Much of the work was done personally by the parishioners and all the furnishings were donated by parishioners and friends. First mass was offered in the new church on Christmas Eve, 1962, and the solemn dedication took place on June 23, 1963, with Bishop Woznicki officiating.
Where we are Today
Together ...we become one in Christ
In July of 2014, St. Joseph Church, Mayville and Sacred Heart Church, Caro joined together as one community of St. Christopher Parish. We, as one parish, have grown by combined efforts in making our world a better place, who look to Jesus as our model and guide. We at St. Christopher, have nurtured a positive openness to new possibilities and respect the goodwill that we share for the best for our churches and the parish.
“Do not be afraid…
Put out into the deep
and let down your nets for a catch!”
- Saint John Paul II