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Home Texas Wharton County East Bernard Holy Cross Catholic Parish

Holy Cross Catholic Parish

  Texas Historical Markers
Church and Magnolia, East Bernard, TX, USA

Latitude & Longitude: 29° 31' 45.0264", -96° 4' 4.836"
    Texas State
Historical Marker
     Many Catholic Czechoslovakian immigrants settled in the prairies near East Bernard in the 1880s. Visiting priests served their religious needs. In 1900 the settlers began the establishment of a parish by purchasing cemetery property in East Bernard. The first Holy Cross Church, a small frame structure, was built in 1905 by Valentine Kozelsky on two acres of land donated by Jan and Anna Vacek. A rectory was built in 1921 for the first permanent resident pastor, the Rev. Joseph C. Kunc. The Holy Cross Catholic school was organized in 1922. A new church building was constructed in 1925 by R. H. Reese of Eagle Lake. Houston architect M. J. Sullivan designed the Spanish Colonial revival structure. It featured a 70-foot belfry and imported Czechoslovakian adornments including statues, painted copper wall hangings, and 10 large, unique stained glass windows of Roundel design. A new school and convent were built in 1928 in the same architectural style. The school operated until 1967. The Pioneer Chapel, a model of the original church, was built in 1994. Holy Cross Catholic Church is now the oldest Catholic church in continuous use in Wharton County. (1997)

This page last updated: 6/1/2010 14:31

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Holy Cross Catholic Parish Historical Marker Location Map, East Bernard, Texas