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History of St. Jude Parish

History of St. Jude Parish

stjude44_webThe property on College Avenue was purchased in the early 1950’s by Father James Hay to prepare for the growth of Alamogordo. Father Ralph Barranger and Father Wilfred Diamond were assigned to Immaculate Conception Church when the need for a new parish became apparent.

Father Barranger planned a multipurpose building. Ground was broken for this new building in 1964 and it was called St. Jude Parish Hall. St. Jude, a mission of Immaculate Conception Church, celebrated its first Mass on Christmas Eve 1965. Father Diamond was appointed parish administrator. Bishop Sydney Metzger dedicated the building on March 17, 1968.

On August 17, 1978, Bishop Patricio Flores officiated at the groundbreaking ceremonies for the new church. The first service was held September 30, 1979 and on December 9th of that year, Bishop Metzger dedicated the new church.

St. Jude was made an official parish on May 25, 1981; and Father Diamond was appointed its first pastor on June 1st. Also, in 1981, the parish became part of the new Diocese of Las Cruces.

stjude048Father Diamond retired February 24, 1988, his 50th ordination anniversary. Father Paul O’Rourke was assigned as pastor. Father O’Rourke supervised the construction of the Life Center, which houses the parish offices, classrooms and meeting rooms.

9rectory01Father Daniel R. Barfield, S.J., took over from Father O’Rourke in June 1990 and added to the physical plant with the construction of the Rectory. The 1992 – 1994 saw the complete renovation of all facilities: parking area, church hall, and landscaping. A Columbarium was added in 1997 for those parishioners choosing cremation. In July 2000 construction was started on the final phase of St. Jude’s buildings: the day chapel, gym and garage/storage facility.

Following the death of Father Barfield on June 7, 2003, Bishop Ricardo Ramirez installed Father Wayne Herpin, S.J. as the fourth Pastor of St. Jude Mission on October 18, 2003. Our current pastor is Father Tom Hoffman, S.J.