THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

  ST. JEROME PARISH, CHICAGO ILLINOIS

        This parish was established by Fr. Leon Medić, who arrived in Chicago in 1912.  In the beginning masses for Croatians were held in the Czech church St. John Nepomucene in Chicago.  During the same year, however, a Protestant church on 25th Street was purchased and the Croatians used it for a full ten years.  In 1922 a Swedish Lutheran church on Princeton Avenue was purchased.  For over 80 years this church has been a principal gathering place for Croatians in Chicago.   Sisters,  Adorers of the Blood of Christ, arrived in Chicago and began teaching at St. Jerome’s Parish School in 1922. In 1928 a new convent was built for the sisters, and the old convent was made into a kindergarten.  During this period the parish debt was cleared.  During Fr. Ferdinand Skoko’s pastorate (1943 – 1955) another new convent was built, the rectory was expanded and the church was renovated.  Finally, during Fr. Vitomir Naletilić’s pastorate, a new school and parish hall were constructed.  In 1974, a supplementary Croatian school was opened for instructing children in the Croatian language, culture and dances.  This school operates to this day.  A Croatian radio program was started in 1979 but only lasted for a few months. It again began operating in 1998.

        From the founding of the parish (1912) until 1995, a total of 5970 children were baptized, 3457 individuals were buried, 4143 individuals were confirmed, and 2818 children received First Holy Communion. Masses are celebrated both in Croatian and English.

        The following friars have served in the parish:

 

Year

 

Pastor

 

Year

 

Associate Pastor

1912-16

fra Leon Medić

 

 

1916-19

fra Ambrozije Širca

 

 

1919-21

fra Placid Belavić

 

 

1921-28

fra Vjenceslav Vukonić

 

 

1928-36

fra Blaž Jerković

1928-30

fra Gabro Cvitanović

 

 

1930-31

fra Anzelmo Slišković

 

 

1934-36

fra Ferdinand Skoko

 

 

1931-34

fra Hugolin Feysz

 

 

1932-44

brat fra Alojzije Soldo

1936-43

fra Franjo Čuturić

1936-38

fra Teofil Pehar

 

 

1938-42

fra Bono Bilandžić

 

 

 

fra Kornelije Ravlić

1943-55

fra Ferdinand Skoko

1944-45

fra Charles Pleše

 

 

1946-49

fra Steve Raich

 

 

1946-47

fra Serafin Vištica

 

 

1950-53

fra Berto Dragičević

 

 

 

fra Marcel Ćabo

 

 

1953-58

fra Charles Pleše

1955-56

fra Serafin Vištica

1955-56

fra Dominik Ćorić

 

 

1955-58

fra Vitomir Naletilić

1956-58

fra Ferdinand Skoko

1957-58

fra Gracijan Raspudić

1958-60

fra Zvonko Mandurić

1957-59

fra Predrag Kordić

 

 

1958-62

fra Anthony Dukić

1960-65

fra Vitomir Naletilić

1960-62

fra Tugomir Soldo

 

 

1962-65

fra Marko Kozina

1965-67

fra Steve Raich

1964-71

fra Dominik Ćorić

1967-69

fra Božidar Benković

 

 

1969-76

fra Marko Kozina

1972-75

fra Ivan Bradvica

 

 

1975-79

fra Leon Galić

1976-79

fra Pavao Maslać

 

   

 

 

1977-79

fra Slavko Soldo

1979-82

fra Anthony Dukić

1979-80

fra Ljubo Krasić

 

 

1980-82

fra Jozo Čuić

1982-85

fra Jerko Kućan

1982-92

fra Hrvoslav Ban

1985-95

fra Mate Ruyechan

 

 

 

 

1992-93

fra Veselko Kvesić

 

 

1993-94

fra Miro Grubišić

 

 

1994-96

fra Marko Kozina

1995-97

fra Zvonimir Kutleša

1996-01

fra Jozo Grbeš

1997-01

fra Jozo Grubišić

1998.

fra Robert Jolić

2001-12

fra Jozo Grbeš

2001-04

Fra Tomislav Puljić

    2005-12 Fr. Ivan Strmecki
2013- fra Ivica Majstorović 2013- fra Stipe Renić
       

Parishes Index

SACRED HEART OF JESUS PARISH, CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

 The origins of  this parish stem from a Slovenian-Croatian parish  which was founded in 1903, with Rev. Janez Kranjec, a Slovenian, as pastor until 1911.  Together with the parishioners, Rev. Kranjec built the church of St. George in 1904 on Ewing Avenue and 96 Street.  Following the appointment of a second Slovenian priest as pastor in 1911, a rift occurred between the Croatian and Slovenian parishioners in 1912.  Despite the five to one  ratio of Croatians to Slovenes both in numbers and in sharing the cost for  the construction of the church, the church remained with the Slovenes and the Croatians needed to build another church for themselves.  In 1913 the Rev. Ivan Stipanoviƒ was named pastor of the Croatian Church where he remained until 1916. Together with his parishioners, he built Sacred Heart Croatian church in 1913/1914 on Escanaba Avenue and 96 Street.  On the second floor of the church, a grade school was organized and was staffed by the School Sisters of St. Francis beginning in 1915.  Rev. Mate Čanić was the pastor from 1916 to 1919; after him the parish was entrusted to the Franciscans from the Commissariat.  The first Franciscan pastor was Fr. Luka Terzić, who was dedicated to renovating the school building.  The friars who succeeded him worked to reduce the construction debt, as well as to lessen tensions among the parishioners and the Croatians in general.  The community was divided because of political partisanship and because of the infiltration of Yugoslav and Communist notions into the community.  After World War II the pastor, Fr. Ljubo Čuvalo, prepared for a construction project.  His plans were carried out by the next pastor, Fr. Myron Lasić, who built a large school building in 1959 and a magnificent and functional church in 1963/1964.  During Fr. Vendelin Vasilj’s pastorate, a parish hall and convent were built.  The debts incurred were paid off by future pastors.

        From 1913 to 1995, 5364 children were baptized, 2633 individuals were buried, 1899 couples were married, 3072 individuals were confirmed and 2560 children received First Holy Communion.  Masses are celebrated both in English and Croatian.

        The following friars have served in the parish:

   

Year

 

  Pastor

 

  Year

   

Associate Pastor

1919-22

fra Luka Terzić

 

 

1922-31

fra Bono Andačić

1924-26

fra Ambro Mišetić

 

 

1928.

fra Blaž Jerković

 

 

1928-29

fra Špiro Andrijanić

 

 

1930-31

fra Gabrijel Cvitanović

1931-47

fra Špiro Andrijanić

1931-32

fra Vladislav Luburić

 

 

1936-39

fra Bono Bilandžić

 

 

1939-42

fra Kornelije Ravlić

 

 

1942-44

fra Silvije Grubišić

 

 

1944-45

fra Marcel Ćabo

1947-49

fra Teofil Pehar

1946-53

fra Vilim Primorac

1949-58

fra Lubo Čuvalo

1950-52

fra Oton Knezović

 

 

1954-54

fra Kruno Pandžić

 

 

1954-56

fra Zoran Ostojić

 

 

1953-58

fra Berto Dragičević

 

 

1955-57

fra Serafin Vištica

 

 

1955-56

fra Dominik Ćorić

 

 

1957-58

fra Miron Lasić

1958-68

fra Miron Lasić

1958-59

fra Steve Raich

 

 

1958-61

fra Kvirin Vasilj

 

 

1959-63

fra Gracijan Raspudić

 

 

1962-64

fra Pavao Maslać

 

 

1964-68

fra Charles Pleše

1968-71

fra Vendelin Vasilj

1968-71

fra Eugen Petrović

1971-79

fra Eugen Petrović

1971-76

fra Zvonimir Kutleša

 

 

1976-78

fra Vincent Cvitković

1979-94

fra Marko Kozina

1981-82

fra Gregory Furjanić

 

 

1982-85

fra Mate Ruyechan

 

 

1985-87

fra Stjepan Pandžić

 

 

1987-88

fra Pavao Maslać

 

 

1988.

fra Stipe Pervan

 

 

1989-94

fra Stjepan Bedeniković

1994-95

fra Jerko Kućan

1994-95

fra Ilija Puljić

1995-2000

fra Pavao Maslać

1995-97

fra Jago Soče

 

1997-2000

fra Marko Kozina

2000- fra Stjepan Bedeniković  2000-01 fra Nikola Pašalic
    2006 -08 fra Ante Bekavac

Croatian Catholic Mission Blessed Alojzije Stepinac Chicago, IL

The mission was established in September 1973. Croatian Dominican priests celebrated its first Mass on September 30th of that same year in the American parish of Saint Jerome's on Lunt Avenue. The Dominicans transferred from Hyde Park to the north side of Chicago in March 1972. Father Ivo Plenkovic was its first pastor. The mssion's first Mass in its current location, that is in Angel Guardian Church at the intersection of Ridge and Devon Avenues, was celebrated on Christmas 1975. Weekly Sunday Mass at 10:30 in Croatian was permitted starting in January 1977 until December 1978 when the church was turned over to the Croatian Mission for continual use. In 1982, the rectory next to the church was also turned over to the Mission.

The mission began a Croatian language and cultural school in 1974 which was turned over to the Croatian Center in Chicago in 1979. Father Nikola Dugandžic was pastor of the mission from 1981 through August 2006 when the Dominicans retreated to Croatia and Croatian Franciscans assumed control over the mission. In 1998, the mission officially changed its name and now bears the name of the Croatian Blessed Alojzije Cardinal Stepinac. Croatian Dominican religious sisters served the mission for many years until 2006 when they too returned to Croatia. Since Croatian Franciscans formally took up work at this mission on August 20, 2006, its new pastor was Father Ivica Majstorovic. In January 2013, its Pastor became fr. Paul Maslac.

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