Holy Family Maronite Church is an Eastern Catholic Church.
* We belong to the large communion of Churches that constitute the Universal Catholic Church. Within this communion of Churches, there are 22 Eastern Catholic Churches (Maronite, Melkite, Ukrainian, etc.) and one Western Catholic Church (the Roman Catholic Church).
* In the Eastern Churches, we are a part of the Syriac-speaking Churches that have flourished in the Patriarchate of Antioch, founded by Peter, Head of the Apostles.
* St. Maron the hermit (410 A.D.), who lived in Apamea, Syria, is the patron Saint of our Church. Hence "Maronite," the name of our Church.
* The Maronite community started as a monastic community in the Monastery of St Maron on the Orontes river in Syria, but considerably grew and sought refuge from persecution in the Mountains of Lebanon.
* St John Maron was our first Patriarch (707 A.D.) and resided in Kfarhay, Lebanon.
* We pride ourselves on being one of the few Churches preserving the Language of Christ (Aramaic) in our Divine Liturgy.
QUICK FACTS ABOUT THE MARONITES
- Official name: Maronite Syriac Antiochene Church.
- Founder: Followers and disciples of St. Maron the Hermit (5th Century).
- Present Head of Church: Patriarch Bshara Rai. Resides in Lebanon.
- Catholicity: In union with the Church of Rome and the Supreme Pontiff since its inception in the 5th century. The only Eastern Catholic Church with no Orthodox counterpart.
- Affinities: All Syriac Churches, especially Chaldeans, Syriac Orthodox, Syro-Malabar, Syro-Malankar, etc.
- Spirituality: Syriac Antiochene tradition.
- Liturgical Language: Syriac-Aramaic (language of Jesus).
- Fathers of the Church: St. Ephrem, St. James of Saroug, St. Isaac the Syriac, etc.
- Canonized Saints: St Sharbel, St Rafka, St Hardini and others.
- Country of Origin: Syria (until 6th century), then Lebanon.
- Population: Estimated One million in Lebanon, and more than 1.5 million in Expansion.
- Expansion: In the USA: two Eparchies (dioceses): Eparchy of St Maron (East Coast), Chancery in Brooklyn NY; Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon (Midwest and west Coast), Chancery in St Louis, MO.
- Between the two Eparchies in the USA, there are 110 priests, 24 permanent deacons, 59 parishes, 21 missions and over two hundred thousand Maronites.
For more info on the origin and identity of the Maronite Church visit: http://www.stmaron.org/origin_identity.html
History of Holy Family Maronite Church
The opportunity to immigrate to America and other part s of the world attracted many of the Lebanese Maronites. Only a small group settled in the city of St. Paul. The early settlers were blessed with the privilege of attending the Church of St. Michael. The pastor permitted the Maronites to celebrate the Maronite Liturgy at St. Michael's Church in West St Paul. This arra ngement continued for a period of approximately 15 years. During the year 1918, the small group of settlers were authorized to purchase a Protestant Church for the sum of $2,250.00. It was remodeled, somewhat, and converted to the Church of the Holy Family. Overtime the church became dilapidated. Ground was broken for a new church at 203 East Robie Street in 1950. The Holy Family Church building is reminiscent of the simply detailed early Romanesque churches of Syria and Lebanon, the ancestral homeland of its parishioners. The walls of brick, trimmed with Mankato stone are surmounted by a low pitched roof of red Spanish tile. The Church of the Holy Family was dedicated on Sunday, January 28, 1951. A new Rectory was later built in 1958.
Holy Family Church has had many pastors over the years that have shepherded the community. We are grateful for all those priests who served us since the beginning of the last century.
Father Joseph Chebala Al-Ladakane: the first to unite the people. and found the already existing Society of the Sacred Heart to purchase the Church for the Maronites and all Eastern Catholics in the City of Saint Paul in 1918.
Father Paul Rizk
Father Emmanuel Al-Khoury: First pastor of the Church of the Holy Family
Father Joseph Yazbek
Father Gabriel Malkoun
Monsignor Peter Ashkar
Father Francis Shea Served from 1946-1948
Father Joseph Ziade Served from 1948-1977
Father Michael Kail (asscociate pastor) served in 1977
Father John McGuire Served from 1977-1983
Father Peter Mahfoud Served from 1983-1992
Father Joseph Akiki Served from 1992-1993
Father Anthony Weiler Served from 1993-1995
Father Louis Baz Served from 1995-1996
Father Bakhos Chidiac Served from 1996-2001
Father Stephen Bonian Served from 2001-2003
Father Rodrigue Constantin Served from 2003-2014
Father Emanuel Nakhleh Served from 2014 to Present