St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church celebrates 100 years

Published 7:00 am Friday, November 24, 2017

St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church recently celebrated 100 years of practicing the faith in Picayune.

Back in the early 1900’s it is said that there were very few Catholics in what would become Picayune.

But on March 2, 1917, Robert J. Willams, a native of Picayune and a member of the Protestant faith, donated a lot to the Catholic Diocese of Natchez that would later become the location of a local Catholic Church. The church was dedicated on November 4, 1917, during the Feast of St. Charles Borromeo, according to information provided by St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church parish administrator Nickie Smith.

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On Sept. 23, 1950 the new parish in Picayune was established and the plan to build a new church was set forth. In August of 1951, the church was ready to be opened on Goodyear Boulevard, Smith’s information states. On Sept. 18, 1955 the new church had a new Parish. On March 1, 1977, the Diocese of Biloxi was established and the church became a parish within that diocese.

Since then, St. Charles Borromeo has grown. In the spring of 1998, under the leadership of Fr. John Noone, construction began at the church’s current location. The first Mass at that current location took place on Nov. 4, 1999 and Bishop Joseph L. Howze dedicated the church on March 28, 2000. St. Charles Borromeo is currently the largest church square footage wise in the state of Mississippi and the only Catholic church in Picayune, Smith’s information states.

In 2007, the St. Charles Borromeo School opened. It is a state and nationally accredited private school in Pearl River County, providing private education to students from Pre-K through eighth grade. The school is also a member of the Mississippi High School Athletic Association.

On Nov. 4 the church celebrated its centennial.

“We are excited to have been able to impart learnings about the faith and sacraments of the religious system all these years. We only wish to continue reaching out to as many people as we can,” said Pam Lambert, St.Charles Borromeo church director. The 100th anniversary celebration began with Mass and continued with lunch.