The history of the Diocese of Superior dates back to the 17th century. Our Journey Through Faith offers a glimpse into the historic events that played a role in the growth of Catholicism in Northern Wisconsin.
Our Journey through Faith: A History of the Diocese of Superior,
Catholics in Chetek gathered occasionally around 1880 in the home of John Kleve to celebrate Mass. The attending priest was Fr. Joseph Dole from Our Lady of Lourdes in Dobie. Bishop Killian C. Flasch had the newly organized mission incorporated on October 18, 1884, in the see city of La Crosse. Land was purchased, along with a building for $650. In 1897 there were 20 families. In 1901 Mass was celebrated six times a year. The first resident pastor was Fr. Ladislaus Nowacki, who was appointed in the fall of 1912. With the help of parishioners and friends, he completed a two-story brick veneer rectory in 1914.
In 1939, Benedictine Fr. Damian Kvitek established a building fund. On February 27, 1940, the Fred Southworth family donated three and one-half lots in the city for the new church. When Fr. Kvitek left in March 1944, the fund reached $10,000. Construction plans were drawn up and approved by Bishop Albert G. Meyer and construction began in the spring of 1948. Cost was $63,637.
Recently, the church was made handicapped accessible with an elevator. A new building was constructed consisting of a garage, storage room and multi-purpose rooms.
REFERENCE: Our Journey through Faith: A History of the Diocese of Superior,
by Sam Lucero, 2005.