ABOUT OUR SAINT: ST. ROSE OF LIMA
“When we serve the poor and the sick we serve Jesus. We must not fail to help our neighbors, because in them we serve Jesus.” St. Rose of Lima
St. Rose of Lima is the patroness of Latin America and the Philippines. This South American Saint's real name was Isabel Flores de Olivia. She was so beautiful that she became known as “Rose”, and that name remained. One day, her mother put a wreath of flowers on her head to show off her loveliness to friends. Rose had no desire to be admired, for her heart had been given to Jesus, so she placed a long pin into the wreath. It pierced her so deeply, that she had a difficult time removing the wreath. From an early age, Rose wanted to become a nun. She often prayed and fasted in secret. She performed secret penances, some of which were painful and severe. She performed daily adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and took daily communion.
St. Rose worked hard to support her poor parents and she humbly obeyed them, except when they tried to get her to marry. That she would not do. As her beauty began to attract suitors, she took to the practice of rubbing her face with pepper until it was red and blistered. Her love of Jesus was so great that when she talked about Him, her face glowed and her eyes sparkled.
St. Rose often suffered a feeling of terrible loneliness and sadness, for God seemed far away. Yet she cheerfully offered all her troubles to Him. In fact, in her last long, painful sickness, she used to pray: "Lord, increase my sufferings, and with them increase Your love in my heart."
St. Rose died in on August 25, 1617, at the age of 31. According to legend, she accurately predicted the date of her death. Pope Clement IX beatified her in 1667 and Pope Clement X recognized her as a saint, canonizing her in 1671. Her feast day is August 23 around the world, although some countries, like Peru, celebrate her on August 30.
“If only mortals would learn how great it is to possess divine grace, how beautiful, how noble, how precious. How many riches it hides within itself, how many joys and delights! No one would complain about his cross or about troubles that may happen to him, if he would come to know the scales on which they are weighed when they are distributed to men.” St. Rose of Lima
OUR HISTORY: ST. ROSE OF LIMA PARISH
The original church dates back to 1884, (before which Sunday Mass was held in the little community hall known as “Rafters”) when it was a Mission administered out of Enfield. In November 1951 it was decided that Windsor Junction required the services of a priest on a full time basis and the districts of Waverley, Fall River, and Windsor Junction became a parish with a priest in residence in the village.
An addition was made to the church in 1955 to allow for a modern heating system as well as much needed space in the Sanctuary. The bell tower was eventually removed, due to rot, and the smaller steeple attached. In 1954 a modern but modest Glebe house was erected next to the church and a heartwarming open house was held when Rev. J. H. Mitchell took up residence in the new building. In 1965 the parish purchased and renovated the old Bambrick’s community hall which proved a very useful addition to an ever growing and very busy parish.
The 30th Anniversary of the parish was held Nov. 7, 1981 with Archbishop James M. Hayes, as the Principal Celebrant. As part of these celebrations, the old hall was reopened with the name Mitchell Hall.
As the faith community continued to expand, it was decided that a new and larger facility was required. Due to the fact that there was not enough land available in Windsor Junction, eight acres was purchased in Fall River from Olive and Clifford Bowers who were long time members of the parish. The sod turning for the new church building took place on June 11, 1989; the first Mass on the site was held on August 23, 1989 with Msgr. William Wamboldt as Celebrant; and the dedication of the New Spiritual Home was Sunday, June 17, 1990 with Archbishop James M. Hayes as the Principal Celebrant. The new Mitchell Hall was built in 1992. In 2000, a very large bequest was received from the Estate of the Houlihan Family, of Windsor Junction, which was applied to the parish debt.
The Priests who served as a Mission were Rev., O’Connor beginning in 1884, Rev. Desmond, and then Rev. W. E. Young who left in 1905, Rt. Rev. M. K. Kinsella from 1905-1917, Rev. Thomas E. Sweet 1917-1934, Rev. W. J. Brown 1934-1937 and Rev. J. J. Devine 1937-1951.
The parish has been served by Rev. J. H. Mitchell, 1951-1963, Rev. Jeremiah Mackey 1963-1966, Rev. Henry J. Neary 1966-1969, Rev. Gordon Hayes 1969-1971, Rev. Thomas Purcell 1971-1974, Rev. Msgr. Fredrick Melanson 1975-1981, Rev. Msgr. William Wamboldt 1981-1995, Rev. Raymond Mura 1995-2001, Rev. James Rent 2001-2005, and currently the Very Rev. Duncan MacMaster has been pastor since 2005.