Fr. Ken Anderson (as of July 1st, 2018)
The Story of St. Edward Parish and School
Our road began in 1889 when St. Viator’s Parish established the Mission of St. Edward. (1889-1901) The founding pastor was Fr. T. J. McCormick, C.S.V. (Clerics of St. Viator). Our first church was dedicated on December 10, 1899.
When the parish was first organized, a piece of ground 150’ x 165’ was purchased on the northeast corner of Sunnyside and 44th Avenue (now known as Kostner Avenue) for a cost of $2,300. A frame structure 36’ x 90’ of no specified style was constructed to serve as a church at a cost of $4,000.
In 1901 Fr. McCormick purchased another lot 150’ x 165’ with a 2 story house at the cost of $4,500 which was converted into a Rectory.
In 1903 Fr. J.J. Cregan, C.S.V. was appointed pastor and in 1908 Fr. Cregan took steps to establish a parochial school. In July 1909, the cornerstone of the school was laid. It was a 52’ x 110’ brick building consisting of a semi-basement containing two club rooms, a recreation room for children and a heating plant. The second floor contained four class rooms and living quarters for the sisters. The upper story had an auditorium, dining room and kitchen. In 1910 the Dominican Sisters from Springfield, Illinois came to the new school. In 1914 an additional lot 50’ x 163’ was purchased on Lowell Avenue (on the North) and added to the existing parochial plant.
In 1916 due to the death of Fr. Cregan, Fr. McCormick returned as Pastor. Due to the increasing numbers of parishioners, he decided to use the auditorium of the school for church services and the old frame church became the parish hall.
In 1918 Fr. J.J. Corbett, C.S.V. came to St. Edward as Pastor. In 1919 he purchased the “Fraser homestead” on Lowell Avenue at a cost of $6,500.00. This home eventually became the sisters convent. During Fr. Corbett’s administration, parish facilities grew to meet the existing needs. The basement of the church, the rectory and the convent were erected in 1926.
In 1931, Cardinal Mundelein placed the administration of the parish under the direction of the diocesan clergy and Fr. John J. O’Hearn was named pastor.
The old school building was now inadequate to serve the needs of its many pupils and in March of 1938 the first shovel of dirt was turned for a new school building. The cost of the new school was $113,000 and was completed in 1939.
Fr. O’Hearn than convinced the Cardinal that the people of our parish were able to bear the expense of completing the church. And so on October 20, 1940 our current church was dedicated as a fitting place of workship for the people of St. Edwards.
In January of 1947, Msgr.O’Hearn announced that the parish debt had been completely liquidated due to the loyal cooperation and dedication of the people of the parish. There stood an unencumbered parish plant of church, two schools, a convent and rectory and additional property for future expansion.
Under the guidance of Fr. Corkery (who succeeded Mgsr. O’Hearn), in 1951, once again, it was necessary to expand the school facilities. A third floor was added to the existing school building (still proving to be insufficent) and in 1955 the Minim school was constructed. It consisted of five class rooms, a gymnasium, projection room, kitchen and club room. This building became the hub (and remains so today) of much parochial activity.
Fr. Corkery also expanded the pastor’s rooms and constructed a four car garage under the new rooms. With all of this construction there was born the “Fall Festival”.
Fr. Corkery passed away in 1995 and Mgsr. John W. Schmid was sent to St. Edward as Pastor. Mgsr. Schmid’s task upon arrival was to demolish the old school building which was dangerous. To meet the need of the increasing student enrollment, the property south of the Minim school was filled with three mobile classrooms and in 1966 an additional three mobile classrooms were added. In addition, two rooms were added to the existing priests’ quarters and four more offices in the Rectory as well as our beautiful baptistry.
After Mgsr. Schmid, the following served and dedicated themselves to the many changes at St. Edwards over the years:
Fr. Albert J. Buckley, Pastor 1967 to 1981
Fr. John J.Donohue, Pastor 1981 to 1992
Fr. John M. Murphy, Pastor 1992 to 2004
Fr. Edward A. Carlson, Pastor 2004 to 2010
Fr. Michael J. Cronin, Pastor 2010 to 2018.
Fr. Ken Anderson, Pastor 2018 to Present.
We continue to grow, build, educate, celebrate, and most importantly, serve God together. Our membership includes people from more than forty countries. Our backgrounds may differ but our goal is the same: to reflect the “solid as a rock” universality of the Church promised to us by Jesus Christ.
After more than 110 years, our journey on the road continues.