Celebrating 100 Years of Holy Redeemer parish in College Park

June 17, 2012

In June 1912, Holy Redeemer Catholic Church was founded in College Park on a quiet stretch of Berwyn Road as a mission of St. Jerome’s in Hyattsville. Today, the parish community is vibrant and includes many generations of families. To mark the parish’s 100th anniversary, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, celebrated a Mass today on the actual anniversary of the founding of the parish, telling the hundreds of faithful gathered, “We recognize that it is precisely in God’s Church established by Jesus that we continue to find Jesus today.”

In 1932, Holy Redeemer Catholic School was built across the street from the church. The parish and school flourished. In 1952, a larger church was constructed next to the school, and that building still serves the parish community. The original church still stands and is now called Fealy Hall, named for one of Holy Redeemer’s first pastors, Rev. Leo Fealy.

“As Catholics 100 years later, we are called to be part of the New Evangelization and to do our part to share the Gospel message,” said Cardinal Wuerl in his homily. “The unwavering message and call that we have as Catholics has not changed even though the world around us has changed to be more secular, materialistic and individualistic.”

Acknowledging Fathers’ Day, the Cardinal said, “What we celebrate today is the fidelity of this portion of God’s family, to the mission of the Church, to God’s plan, to God’s word, to God’s sacramental presence with us, and to the recognition of our identity as God’s family.”

The Cardinal cited the Acts of the Apostles which details the mission of the first Christian parish: to pray, to hear the teachings of the Apostles, to build community and to join in the breaking of the bread. “Today, we are a people who pray to be one in spirit; the language of the Church is prayer. This binds us together with all the other members of our family; our diocesan prayer,” said Cardinal Wuerl.

In concluding his homily, the Cardinal prayed for the future generations of the Holy Redeemer parish. “The future is ours too. Who could have ever said what was to come? So too we must be ready to address the future full of faith.”

The Mass was followed by a parish-wide picnic.

The Archdiocese of Washington is home to over 600,000 Catholics living in Washington, DC, and five Maryland counties: Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s.

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