ST. VINCENT'S CHURCH
BUFFALO, NEW YORK

A number of Catholic families had located in the northeastern part of the city beyond the Cold Spring district, in 1860, and subsequent years.  These were mostly German families, and they attended services at St. Louis' Church or St. Joseph's at Elysville; but both of these were three or four miles distant from their homes.  In 1864, there were about forty families residing near what is now Humboldt Parkway, and Bishop Timon commissioned the Rev. J. Sorg, who was his secretary and lived with him at the cathedral, to organize these families into a congregation and start a little church for them.  Father Sorg continued to visit the little congregation until a chapel was built, on land which had been purchased on Main Street, between Humboldt Parkway and Jefferson Street.

This congregation did not increase very rapidly, because the location was far removed from the business section of the city, and there was no industrial enterprise in the immediate vicinity except the Yamerthal stone quarries.  After Father Sorg, the little congregation was attended by the Redemptorists and by the Jesuits.  The names of the pastors who directed the affairs of the parish during this period were: Father Hoffschneider, Father Kech and Father Dallez, until Father Scheffels came as resident pastor.  A parochial residence was built, and a little school established.  The pastors who followed Father Scheffels were: Rev. M. Phillips, Rev. A. Adolph and Rev. M. Clemenz.  A new brick church was erected, which was enlarged by Father Clemenz' successor, the Rev. P. Theis.

Rev. G. Grill presided over the parish for seven or eight years, and he completed a fine parochial school building.  The parish is situated in a favorable and healthful locality; and as the city gradually extended in that direction it became one of the large parishes of the city.

Father Grill died July 20, 1911, and the Rev. H. Zimmerman had temporary charge until April 4, 1912, when the Very Rev. Joseph Hummel, K. H. C., came as pastor of St. Vincent's.  Father Hummel found the buildings inadequate to the needs of such a large and important congregation.  He bought some adjoining land on Eastwood Place, and on this he built the new parochial residence in 1914.  The church was too small.  He had plans drawn for a magnificent church.  He bought property on Main Street, corner of Eastwood Place, and started the new church in 1924.  The corner-stone was laid by Bishop Turner, Sunday, October 6, 1924, and the beautiful church building was dedicated by Bishop Turner, November 28, 1926.  Father Hummel died in June, 1926, and the Rev. Thomas Lynch came as pastor at the end of September, 1926.



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Holly Timm
Cheektowaga, New York
erie@nygenweb.com