Coverage Areas:  National |  South Carolina |  Aiken |  Beaufort |  Charleston |  Columbia |  Greenville |  Myrtle Beach |  Rock Hill
Menu

Our Lady of Grace becomes a parish

LANCASTER—Eight years after it started as a small Catholic commu­nity, Our Lady of Grace has become a parish.

Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone of­ficially erected it to parish status on Dec. 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. It had been a mission of St. Philip Neri Church in Fort Mill since 2013.

Father Jeffrey Kirby is the admin­istrator for the new parish, which is located in a section between Lan­caster and Charlotte, N.C., known as Indian Land.

In his official decree, Bishop Guglielmone said rapid growth in the Catholic community called for the change. The number of Catholics there started to grow rapidly in the early 2000s, largely because of re­tirees moving to Sun City Carolina Lakes. Others have located to the area as nearby Charlotte’s popula­tion swelled.

A small group of about 150 people started attending Mass in borrowed space at a Methodist church in early 2008 and the crowds had quadrupled by the end of that year.

An anonymous donor gave land for a new church and a groundbreaking was held in 2013. Bishop Gugliel­mone dedicated Our Lady of Grace’s church building on Aug. 15.

Oratorian Father John Giuliani, who served as pastor there for eight years, said the new parish is a sign of hope for the growth of the Church in South Carolina.

“We live in an age where so many parishes around the country are being closed or merged, so to have a new one established is a very positive thing,” he said. “It’s a recogni­tion that this community has come of age, and is no longer dependent on another church for support. This is a result of the labor of many people for many years.”

Father Kirby said it is an honor and a special experience to serve Our Lady of Grace at this piv­otal time.

“Very few priests have the op­portunity to shepherd a parish at its establishment,” he said. “It’s a blessing to be here with the people to witness this, to experience it and celebrate it.”

Pat Latour of Fort Mill has been at Our Lady of Grace since the start. She was recruited by the late Jack Monahan, one of the parish found­ers, to work on a steering committee when the new community was first being considered.

“He wanted me to be involved so I helped work with getting everything set up in the beginning, and then I served as his second in command for the capital campaign,” Mrs. Latour said. “After he passed away, I took over and chaired the campaign. To have been involved in this from the beginning has been a blessing and an honor.”

Mrs. Latour said she and her hus­band Robert moved to South Caro­lina to retire nine years ago after considering several other locations.

“I really believe God brought us here so I could be involved in this church,” she said. “I feel like I was do­ing what God had asked me to do, and now I’m absolutely thrilled beyond words that we are now a parish.”






  • Diocesan Events Calendar
    View All Events
    Jul 18 Tekakwitha Conference 2018
    From the Calendar of Native American Ministry
    Jul 27 4th National Black Catholic Women's Conference
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Jul 288:30 am Canon Law Course
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Aug 10 Last day of Summer Academy
    From the Calendar of St. Anthony of Padua School Greenville
    8:00 am 2018 Interregional African American Catholic Evangelization Conference
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Aug 17 CORE Training Weekend
    From the Calendar of Youth Ministry
    Aug 1910:00 am Volunteer Workday and Open House Potluck
    From the Calendar of St. John School North Charleston
    Aug 258:00 am Day of Prayer for Deacons
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Sep 1 Daniel Rudd Fund Application Closes
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    10:00 am Junta de Equipo Diocesano de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Sep 18 National Association of Black Catholic Administrators Annual Meeting
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Oct 13 Diocesan Evangelization Conference
    From the Calendar of Ethnic Ministries
    Oct 278:00 am Day of Continuing Education for Deacons
    From the Calendar of Diaconate
    Nov 1 Black Catholic History Month
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Nov 1010:00 am Junta de Equipo Diocesano de Emmaus
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Nov 1210:00 am Junta Diocesana
    From the Calendar of Pastoral Juvenil
    Nov 17 Diocese of Charleston Native American Catholic Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of Native American Ministry
    Nov 18 Vietnamese Martyrs Celebration
    From the Calendar of Vietnamese Ministry
    Dec 1 Black Catholics Heritage Celebration
    From the Calendar of African American Ministry
    Dec 15 Simbang Gabi for Filipino Catholics
    From the Calendar of Filipino Ministry