Warren County Iowa Genealogical Society




    Churchville Church of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

    Churchville Church of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, 897 West Street, Churchville, Iowa, 50211, phone (515) 297-2267, the oldest Catholic parish in Warren County, Churchville, Iowa, Jefferson Township.

    History of the Churchville Catholic Church was copied from The History of Warren County, Iowa, compiled by the Warren County Genealogical Society, Curtis Media Corp., Dallas, Texas, 1987, p.213.

    The History of Warren County states that “a small village” in Jefferson Township was laid out by John CHURCHMAN in 1854. The church was built in 1859.

    In the Catholic Almanac for 1857, there are several relative entries under the Diocese of Dubuque. It states that in Warren County there is listed “St. Lambertus,” four lots in Churchville attended by Rev. F. McCORMICK. This is believed to have been in the year of 1855. Father McCORMICK was resident pastor of St. Patricks at this time and probably attended the parish at Churchville.

    Further history tells of a Father DeCAILLY who contemplated the building of a log church near Churchville the same year.The History of Warren County, Iowa, 1908, states that a Catholic Church was built in 1890 by Father Dunyan with 90 families in the parish.

    A parochial school was built in 1903 in connection with the church. It was staffed first by the Humility Sisters and second by the Franciscan Sisters. The church burned to the ground on March 13, 1933 and the parochial school was closed in 1937. The building is still used for religious instructions, Altar and Rosary Society meetings and as a community hall.

    The present church was built by Father CURTIN in 1941. He served the parish until his untimely death by accident in 1966. The parish was served by Father Michael CHURCHMAN, whose ancestors laid out the town of Churchville.

    The present records began on October 1, 1905. The first items recorded in these records were by Rev. Edward F. WEIL, pastor until December 1907.

    The Assumption parish has been served by the following pastors: Rev. J. J. CONDON, 1908-1920, Rev. P. J. CASEY, 1920-1940, Rev. Denis CURTIN, 1940-1966, Rev. M. A. CHURCHMAN, 1967-1972, Rev. Richard L. BERGMAN, 1972-1975, Rev. Daniel J. CLARKE, 1975-1976, Rev. Francis SWIFT, 1976-1979, Rev. John RICHTER, 1979-1986, the present pastor being Rev. John LORENZ.

    There are around 100 families in the parish at present. The parish was founded to serve the early German and Irish immigrants, and has produced many good citizens that have helped to build our country. The Churchville parish is still a strong, healthy parish, has a good youth group and is very active in community affairs. The parish cemetery (known as the Calvary Cemetery) is now 132 years old, with the first burial in 1854.

    Indianola Record newspaper, Friday, Sept 19, 1941

    Bishop Gerald T. BERGEN of the Des Moines diocese will conduct the dedication services for the new Church of the Assumption at Churchville Sunday Morning at 10:30. The building shown above [on this page] was built during the past few months after the old church was destroyed by fire.It is the style architecture of the early missions.The original church was built in the early days of the county. It burned in March of 1933.