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St. Patrick Parish History


1855 -  Nashua became an independent Catholic mission and Father John O'Donnell, V.G., its first pastor.  Masses were celebrated in Nashua, Concord, Penacook, Milford and Hollis.  By 1857, the congregration had grown to 2,000 and construction began on Immaculate Conception Church on Temple Street.

In 1884, Sister Rose of Lima Academy opened its doors to 437 students.  The Sisters of Mercy convent accompanied the school and Sister Mary Frances Leeson was Mother Superior.

In 1892, Sacred Heart School was completed. The top floor housed a chapel and school hall that seated 800.  A "mud wall house" sat next to the school and served as the Sisters of Mercy convent until they moved to 18 Pearl Street.

In 1897, Immaculate Conception Church was refurbished. The church was a brick structure with Gothic lines.  The refurbishment included retouching the fresco work and paintings and installing new stained glass windows.

By 1900, the need for a new, larger, and more centralized parish church for the Irish community of 2,300 souls was addressed.  1901 marked the groundbreaking for St. Patrick Parish, which was completed in 1909 with a Christmas Day first Mass and formal dedication in 1910.


Immaculate Conception 

Father John O'Donnell 1855-1867
Father James Murphy 1867-1868
Father John O'Donnell 1868-1882
Father Patrick Holohan 1883-1891
Father Edmund J. Buckle 1891-1909

Saint Patrick

Monsignor Matthew J. Creamer 1909-1936
Father Patrick J. Scott 1937-1944
Monsignor Maurice J. Redden 1945-1952
Monsignor John A. Belford 1952-1957
Monsignor Joseph O'Connor 1957-1965
Monsignor James R. McGreal 1966-1975
Monsignor T. Joseph McDonough 1975-1997
Father Martin T. Kelly 1997-2011
Father Michael Kerper 2011-Present

The current St. Patrick Cemetery land was purchased in 1856 and the Calvary Group installed in 1920.

The rectory was located on Main Street until 1955, when the current rectory was opened.  The current Parish Center was completed in 1968 and originally was built as a library, gymnasium and classrooms.  The school's last classes were held in 1973.

The conduct of Mass and sacraments, made reverently, led to a very vibrant Parish and school life.  Over the years, there were St. Patrick Concerts (or Minstrel Shows); parade participation; a Catholic Book Club; Knights of Columbus; the Women's Guild; CYO sports, and many other societies and events.

In 2001, the last Mass was said at St. Casimir Church, and Fr. Martin Kelly enthusiastically welcomed St. Casimir's community to St. Patrick.

The first Latin Mass was held in 2007, and we are blessed today to continue the Latin Mass under Fr. Michael Kerper.




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