Served by the Scalabrinian
missionaries since 1890
911 E. Missouri Avenue, Kansas City, Missouri
Welcome to Holy Rosary Parish. You will enjoy a taste of Italian spirituality. The colorful stained glass windows, the statues of Mary and saints, 26 in total, the richness of marble altars and memorial plaques place you in an Italian spiritual environment. Holy Rosary Parish was founded in 1890 at the request of the Italian migrant community of Kansas City to Bishop John Hogan for an Italian priest. Bishop Hogan contacted Bishop Scalabrini in Italy where he had just founded in 1887 a Missionary Congregation for the pastoral care of the Italian migrants in North and South America, called Missionaries of St. Charles, later known as Scalabrinian Missionaries. Scalabrini sent the first priests to Kansas City in 1890. From a humble storeroom chapel, Fr. Santipodo organized a fund raising campaign to build a new church which was dedicated on Sunday, November 10, 1895. The Scalabrini Missionaries have since been serving Holy Rosary Parish. See the link to the history below.
You may wonder why so many statues of Mary and saints are exposed in the church. Even though the majority of Italians were from Sicily, they came from different cities and villages and each one of them honor a Patron Saint, or Mary under a different title and each group brought a statue of their own Patron which they honored yearly with a particular feast and festival. Now the pioneer migrants have passed on and the new generations are no longer familiar with the ancestors’ patron saints, but they are still a vital part of the parish history.
A detailed history of the parish may be read by following the link below, then from page to page by following the links on each page. Or use the index to browse.
(This material originally appeared in 1991 in the 100th Anniversary of Holy Rosary Parish booklet. The article was researched and written by Angelo Bongino.)Thanks to Fr. Vicentini for providing a copy of the booklet for transcription.
Index for the entire series
The Founding and Early Years of the Parish || The 1920's to the 1940's
Fr. Donanzan's Successors || The Fire of April 12, 1903
Holy Rosary School History || The Lodges
Church Organizations History || Spirit of the Parish
A shorter history of the parish appeared in the souvenir booklet for the Silver Jubilee of the parish in 1920. No author was given. Thanks to Josephine Passantino of the parish for allowing us to transcribe her copy of the booklet.
Download and view the complete Silver Jubilee booklet(pdf/Acrobat format, 2.4MB. Opens in new browser window. The Acrobat Reader/Adobe Reader is a free download. Opens in a new browser window.)
A short history of the Holy Rosary School also appeared in the Silver Jubilee booklet.