A Brief Outline of the History of the
Parish of Saint Peter, Olney, MD
|1774-87||Father John Carroll ministers to the needs of Catholics in Montgomery County.|
|1790||Father Robert Plunkett arrives in the United States.
Pope Pius VI establishes the first diocese in the United States of America at Baltimore, Maryland, and names Father John Carroll as the first bishop.
|1793||Father Robert Plunkett becomes a missionary serving Montgomery County and part of Frederick County.|
|1800||Father Plunkett writes to Bishop Carroll regarding "his six little congregations."|
|1808||Pope Pius VII raises Baltimore to the status of an Archdiocese. New dioceses are established in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Bardstown.|
|1813||Father James Redmond becomes the first resident pastor of Saint Mary's in Rockville and its missions: Saint John's in Rock Creek, Saint Mary's in Barnesville, Saint Rose in Lower Seneca, and Holland (later called "Hollins" or "Hawlings") River, commonly referred to as Peter Gardiner's congregation.|
|1815 Jan. 14||Father Plunkett dies. He is buried at Visitation Convent in Georgetown.|
|1816 Nov. 18||The Holland River congregation, meeting at Peter Gardiner's home, reports 35 communicants.|
|1819 Dec. 2||In the Saint Mary's sacramental records, the Hollins River congregation is identified for the first time with the baptism of Peter Henry Clements.|
|1853||Father John J. Dougherty becomes pastor of Saint Mary's and its missions.|
|1859 Jan. 14||Gassaway Watkins sells his property at the intersection of Mt. Zion and Brookeville Roads to Archbishop Peter Kendrick for $15.|
|1859 Feb. 15||Michael Murphy, born September 17, 1858, to J.M. Murphy and his wife, Honera Catin, is baptized on this date. Michael is Albert Murphy's father.|
|1859-60||A chapel at Mt. Zion and Brookeville Roads is built and dedicated to Saint Peter and continues as a station of Saint Mary's, Rockville, with Father John Dougherty as its pastor. Father Dougherty serves from 1853 to 1862.|
|Watercolor picture of original chapel|
|1860 July 29||This date marks the first entry in the sacramental records using the name Saint Peter.|
|1861-1862||The chapel is destroyed and rebuilt during this period, April 1861 through July 1862.|
|1862 Sept.||Federal troops under General Reno move through the Cracklin District of Montgomery County.|
|1866||Saint Peter's is listed in the National Catholic Directory as a mission and no longer as merely a station.|
|1889-98||Father Charles O. Rosensteel serves as pastor of Saint Mary's and its missions - including Saint Peter's.|
|1891||Albert Murphy is baptized.|
|1898 Sept. 24||The Archdiocese acquires property in Olney. James Cardinal Gibbons purchases sections of Shepherd's Hard Fortune and Berry's Neglect, "containing one sixth an acre, more or less," for $50.
At this site, construction begins on a new church for Saint Peter's congregation.
Watercolor picture of new church
|1898 Nov. 2||Father Rosensteel is transferred from Saint Mary's, Rockville, to Saint John the Evangelist, Forest Glen. Father Joseph Cunnane is named pastor at Saint Mary's.|
|1898 Nov. 9||Father Rosensteel blesses the cornerstone of Saint Peter's Church in Olney. The church's construction cost $800. The number of parishioners is approximately 150.|
|1898 Dec. 25||The first Mass in the new Olney church is celebrated at 8 a.m.|
|1899 Jan. 4||An Oyster Roast, the first social event for the Saint Peter's community, is held at the Grange Hall.|
|1899 Feb. 26||The Sentinel newspaper publishes that Mass is celebrated at Saint Peter's at 8:15 a.m. and at Saint John's at 11 a.m.|
|1899 Nov. 26||James Cardinal Gibbons dedicates the new church in Olney.|
|1902 Jan. 27||Eliza E. Farquhar sells 2,444.3 square feet adjacent to the existing church property to James Cardinal Gibbons for $30.|
|1902 Aug. 19||Jousting tournament and picnic are held for the benefit of Saint Peter's Catholic Church.|
|1902 Oct. 31||The church bell is blessed by Father T.D. Williams. Its installation follows.|
|1930||Weekly Masses begin at Saint Peter's. Religion instruction takes place before Mass.|
|1947 Nov. 15||The Archdiocese of Washington - including Montgomery County - is separated from the Archdiocese of Baltimore.
Archbishop (later Cardinal) Patrick A. O'Boyle is named first resident Archbishop of Washington.
|1949||Saint Peter's receives permission to teach religious education classes to children.|
|1951||Two Sisters of Mercy from Rockville help teach Religious Education.|
|1952||Construction of the first rectory in Williamsburg Village begins.|
|1953 June 20||Father Brown arrives at Saint Peter's.|
|1953 June 21||The first person is baptized at Saint Peter's by Father Brown. The congregation moves from mission to parish status.|
|1953 July 8||Archbishop Patrick A. O'Boyle raises Saint Peter's Mission to the status of a parish, with Father Philip Brown as the first full-time, resident pastor.|
|1953||The parish buys a used school bus.|
|1953 Aug.||The annual August Dinners begin.|
|1954||In its annual accounting to the Archdiocese, Saint Peter's report states, "CCD to start shortly." Now the program is under parish auspices.|
|1955 June 1||Father Lawrence McGlone becomes the second pastor. CYO begins at Saint Peter's.|
|1956 Spring||The parish has 325 families registered.|
|1956 June||Father McGlone's 25th Jubilee celebration is held at Olney Theater.|
|1956 Sept.||The parish begins construction of church/hall/chapel/school complex.|
|TOP||Photo of new complex|
|1956||The parish's first Confirmation is held at Olney Theater.|
|1957 Jan.||Three Sisters of Mercy and five lay people teach in the CCD program.|
|1957 Aug. 26||Four Sisters, from the congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Chestnut Hill, arrive to teach in the Day School. Sisters teach at Saint Peter's for 26 years.|
|1957 Oct. 20||Archbishop O'Boyle dedicates the Church Hall and School Complex.|
|1957||The Day School has 160 pupils.
Parish boundary is changed, as Saint Paul's Parish, Damascus, is formed.
|1958 June||The first Day School graduation is held.|
|1959||Parish boundary is changed, as Saint Andrew's Parish, Silver Spring, is formed.|
|1959 Easter|| The statue of Saint Peter by sculptor Eugene Kormendi is set in place and blessed by Bishop Philip J. Hannan.
Photo of Saint Peter statue
|1960||Parish boundary is changed, as Saint John the Baptist Parish, Silver Spring, is formed.|
|1961 Jan. 21||Father McGlone dies.|
|1961 Feb. 11||Monsignor William J. Awalt is appointed the parish's third pastor.|
|1961 Mar. 17||Clara May Downey deeds 1.812 acres adjacent to the existing property for $10 to the Archbishop of Washington.|
|1961||The Block House is constructed for use as a storage facility.|
|1962 Mar. 10||Georgia Avenue Church is demolished.|
|1962 Sept. 8||Father James Malloy is named fourth pastor of Saint Peter's. Father Malloy initiates a school library and a physical fitness program.|
|1962 Sept. 10||The groundbreaking takes place for the convent.|
|1963 Aug.||The convent is completed. Robert Viner is the builder.|
|1963||The rectory moves to the former convent in Williamsburg Village.|
|1963 Aug. 13||The chapel area is struck by lightning.|
|1963 Sept. 21||Father Raymond Decker becomes the parish's fifth pastor.|
|1963 Nov. 24||A Requiem Mass is celebrated for President John F. Kennedy.|
|1966||Parish boundary is changed, as Saint Patrick's Parish, Norbeck, is formed.|
|1967 Sept. 2||Father Canice Treacy is named sixth pastor.|
|1968-71||Father Treacy establishes an interim Parish Council. Thomas Niland serves as its first president. Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist are instituted at Saint Peter's.|
|1970||The parish consists of approximately 400 families.|
|1971 Dec. 24||The bell from the church on Georgia Avenue is refurbished and installed in the church complex.|
|1972||William Fallon serves as President of the first elected Parish Council.
Parish boundary is changed, as Saint Francis of Assisi Parish, Derwood, is formed.
|1973 May||Archbishop (later Cardinal) William W. Baum is installed as second resident Archbishop of Washington.|
|1974||An addition to the Day School is constructed.|
|1977 June 12||The parish celebrates Father Treacy's 25th Jubilee.|
|1977 Sept.||Thomas L. Duggan becomes the Director of Religious Education.|
|1978 May 21||The 25th Anniversary Mass of the parish is celebrated by Monsignor Awalt. The parish now has 1,000 families.|
|1980 Aug.||Archbishop (later Cardinal) James A. Hickey becomes third resident Archbishop of Washington.|
|1981||Parish boundary is changed, as Resurrection Parish, Burtonsville, is formed.|
|1981 May 24||The Block House is renovated to serve as the Youth Center.|
|1982 Nov. 8||The memorial to Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha is dedicated by Father Treacy.|
|1984||The rectory moves from Williamsburg Village to the renovated convent. The Parish Office shares the building.|
|1985||A Finance Council is named by Father Treacy.|
|1987 May 31||Bishop Eugene A. Marino dedicates the Immaculata Grotto.|
|Photo of the Immaculata Grotto|
|1987 June 28||Bishop Edward J. Hermann blesses the site for the new church.|
|1988 Dec. 17||Bishop Alvaro Corrada del Rio, S.J., blesses the cornerstone of the new Worship Center.|
|1989 Jan. 29||Bishop Cardinal Hickey dedicates the new church building at the noon Mass.
Photo of the Worship Center
|1992 June 6||Father Treacy celebrates his 25th year as Pastor of Saint Peter's.|
|1994 June 1||Father Thomas M. Kalita becomes the seventh pastor of Saint Peter's.
Father Treacy is named Senior Priest.
|1994 Sept.||Girls are allowed to become altar servers.|
|1995 June||Renovation begins to the existing school, including reconfiguration of the roof. The bell is removed and placed in storage.|
|1995 Oct. 8||Pope John Paul II visits Maryland.|
|1996 Sept. 26||Bishop Leonard Olivier dedicates the Treacy Center, named in honor of Saint Peter's sixth pastor. The former chapel is renovated to create the Center, which houses two rooms for general use by the parish, especially for its educational programs.|
|1997 May 30||Bishop Corrada officiates at groundbreaking ceremonies for the expanded educational facilities.|
|1997 Dec.||The parish receives the gift of approximately 1.3 acres of land situated on Route 108, adjacent to the east side of the existing site and running east to Prince Philip Drive.|
|1998 June 21||Bishop William E. Lori dedicates the expanded educational facilities. A parish picnic follows.|
|1998 Nov. 1||The Centennial Celebration takes place. The highlight is the 100th Anniversary Mass, with Cardinal Hickey as the principal celebrant at the Mass to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Saint Peter's congregation in Olney. Father Thomas Kalita, the parish's seventh pastor, is a concelebrant.|
|To learn more about our history, read "A History of a Roman Catholic Congregation," published by the parish in 1998.|