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About: About

Parish History

In 1902, Bishop John O’Connor directed the Rev. Joseph C. Dunn, Pastor of St. Leo’s Irvington, to establish a parish in the Clinton Hill section of Newark. Father Dunn bought the three-acre Schwartz estate at Clinton Place and Millington Avenue where the ground was broken for the frame building on August 14, 1903. During the several months, while the chapel was being built, Mass was celebrated at 34 Homestead Park.

Blessed Sacrament was assigned its first official Pastor, Rev. Frederick, C. O’Neill, on October 12, 1905. He guided the parish for 46 years. As the parish continued to grow, the little frame church became too small. On June 26, 1907, he purchased property at Van Ness Pl. and Clinton Ave., as the site for a new church. The ground was broken for the new church on Palm Sunday, 1912. On October 5, 1913, Fr. O’Neill celebrated the first Mass in the new church.

In the meantime, Fr. O’Neill established another parish. In 1909, he bought the property at Custer and Peshine Avenues. The ground was broken on November 12, and by April 1910, the new parish of St. Charles Borromeo was completed with the Rev. Thomas A. Walsh as the first pastor.

At some point in the 1980s and ‘90s, the neighborhood demographics had changed and the parishes saw a loss of membership. To help keep the parishes viable entities of worship and praise, Blessed Sacrament and St. Charles Borromeo were merged on May 10, 1999, with Father Paul Schetleck as Pastor.

On September 16th, 2001 Fr. Anselm Nwaorgu was installed as the Pastor for BSSCB, under his guidance, the merged parishes and ministries flourished and grew in numbers.

During his term as pastor here he was ordained as a Monsignor on September 13th, 2009. A man of vision and devout leadership, he recognized the communities hunger for spiritual edification. To nurture and elaborate on the teachings of the Catholic faith he initiated a noon and evening time Bible Study class. In addition, the opportunities for communal worship through First Friday and Third Thursday Adoration.

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