In 1871 plans were drawn up and completed for the church of St Patrick at Cedar Creek to accommodate the 40 or more Catholic families in the area attached to that mission with St Stephen’s Church of Anoka.
Mr. Steven Kelly’s father gave the land on which to build St Patrick’s Church.
Michael Gilligan traded hay for $78 worth of lumber with which the church was constructed. The men got busy sawing logs and hauling stones up from the river west of the church. They had the logs and boards cut up at the St Francis saw mill and floated the lumber down river and then hauled them up with stone boats and horses. There were big planks, 12 X 12 cut for foundation under the church and only a few rocks on corners. The building went up and Mass was offered in this structure once a month.
Excerpt below taken from an article in The Dispatch printed Wednesday, December 8, 1976
Wed, Dec 8, ’76
St. Patrick’s–a church with a view
By Oliver Towne
Last Sunday, as Archbishop John Roach gave his own blessing in an official dedication, the parish of St. Patrick, Cedar Township, tiny pocket of ethnic Irish north of Anoka, diluted by Italians, Germans, Poles and Germans, had moved 114 years, four miles, and spanned a longer time in the history of religious architecture.
Behind them was left the typical country American church of peaked roof and steeple so popular from the 1850s through early 1900s.
For St. Patrick’s is a church of its people. For 114 years, succeeding generations set aside a few dollars for that day when a new church might be built.
When Father Donahue, fresh from the urban scene as director of vocations for the archdiocese, arrived in 1973, he discovered not only a forgotten pocket of Eire, spawned by Gilligans, Gallaghers, Murrays, and Flynns, but 10 acres of land for a new church at 19921 Nightingale St., Cedar Township, and $190,000 to put one there. (They had to raise twice that.)
Father Donahue also discovered his parishioners, many young people searching for life in the woods, along the ponds and streams away from metropolitan crowding.
They knew what kind of church they wanted — a simple place, with simple lines and furnishings. They wanted to feel that they were part of nature, that the church was nature. They wanted to feel warm and friendly.
Dedication Of The New Saint Patrick’ s Church
December 5, 1976
Two and one-half years of dedicated planning culminate today in the rite of dedication of our new church, Archbishop John R. Roach presiding. Our beloved Archbishop, no stranger to St. Patrick”s, will dedicate our new building to the service of God and the spiritual growth of men and women in this U. S. bicentennial year.
Following the example of the pioneer founders of this parish, the present congregation of St. Patrick’s have built this new Church to meet their expanding needs.
This House of God will serve many purposes: Worship, Religious Education, and social activities. It is intended to be the center for all parish activities. May it always be used for the Greater Honor and Glory of God.
St Patrick’s Archive Project
It has been said that when an old person dies, it’s like a library burning down in terms of the information that is lost. Unless we do something to preserve it, our history will fade into the mists of time and be lost forever.
St. Patrick’s will undertake an archive project in order to gather, document and preserve the history of our parish. We are very interested in anything you may have, especially your stories and your photos, which relate to St. Patrick’s. The farther you can reach back in time, the better. We have, so far, been unable to find photos of the inside of the old St. Patrick’s Church that is now the Alanon building on County Road 58. However, photos from the last ten or twenty years are also “historic” and valuable to our purpose.
Please email your photos digitally to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or place prints in an envelope and mark it carefully with your name, mailing address and a phone number (in case we have questions) and either leave it at the information desk or drop it off at the parish office. We will scan the photos, and return them to you. Please include any information that you have about where and when the photo was taken and identify the people in the photo. Your photo will be stored digitally in our archives, after we label it with the information that you provide. Unless you notify us to the contrary, we will also assume that you grant us the right to publish it in a parish history book.
Think about special liturgies-Confirmations, weddings, First Holy Communions. Think about church ball teams, card clubs, dances and festivals. Think about Christmas pageants, Bible School, and Easter egg hunts. Think about the Knights of Columbus, Circles of Claddagh, and the Altar and Rosary Society.
Your stories are as valuable as your photos. Please think about writing down your memories of colorful people, fun activities, or funny incidents that happened at St. Pat’s. We want it all!
It’s going to be an exciting project!
It’s important to know where we’ve come from. St. Patrick’s Church is where the Human and the Divine intersect in our daily lives; where Christ reaches out to us in the Eucharist; where we learn anew about Christ’s Love for us. We have every right to be proud of our heritage. We stand tall because we stand on the shoulders of giants! We have a responsibility to hand our children information about those who came before, so that they can understand their world, and their place in the eternal timeline.