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Delia: History of Sacred Heart Church
Now set firmly
in the west side the Italians begin to look for a place where to worship
and have their religious services
They found it at Saint John downtown Stamford. They went to Father O’Brian Pastor of that church to ask if they could attend the services.Father O’Brien welcomed the Italians and assigned them an irish priest
by the name of Father Kelly. Father John Kelly quickly became very friendly with the Italians and is remembered favorably by all even so many years later. Father Kelly even learned the italian language for better communicating with his new flolck. The mass for the italians was celebrated in the basement of the church. All went well ……for a while.
But we’re Italians; we have long standing traditions and we wanted to carry our
traditions in the same manner we did in our old towns in the old country. June 1920 exsactly 86 years ago became a memorable date for all Italians in Stamford. On that date i fedeli di San Vito celebrated their feast with solemn high mass and a procession in the streets of the city. Well the people of Stamford had never seen a procession with the statue of the Saint carried on the shoulder of men. They stopped to watch with amazement this new happening go by…….. From then on there was no stopping us.
more towns started to celebrate their feat their Patron Saint in the same manner and that tradition continues to this day.
Soon the congregation had grown so much that we begin to think about getting our own church.
The Italians formed a committee to start looking for a site and to raise money to build the church. This they did.They found a lot right in the west side. Right here where we stand today
The committee traveled to Hartford to seethe Bishop most reverend John J. Nilan and ask his permission to build their own church . Bishop Nilan gave his blessings
With great sacrifice, hard work and overcoming prejudice and uncertainties they build our church. And on may 11 1924 exactly 82 years and a month ago.
the new church was dedicated at 10.30 with most reverend bishop Nilan of Hartford
officiating aided by rev. Alessandro Ciocia of Brooklyn And on June 22 that same year the first Holy Communion was held in the new church.
Father Kelly came along too and remained with the Italians for many years. And so on that faithful day may 11 1924 begin our journey that has brought us here today. and we are proud.
Our Sacred Heart Church was and remains the center of our spiritual and cultural center.