Sacred Heart Parish, Verona, MO, Founded 1874

Sacred Heart Church, Verona, MO (circa 2010)
Sacred Heart Church, Verona, MO (circa 2010)

General parish info

Contact info
Pastor: Fr. Henry Grodecki, CM
Associate Pastor: Fr. David Baunach
Therese Kahre
Pastoral Associate:
Sr. Petra Salgado, MCM

Phone: (417) 678-2403, Fax: (417) 678-3714
Mailing address: Sacred Heart Church, PO Box 533, Aurora, MO 65605-0533



Weekend Mass times

8 a.m.
7:30 p.m., Spanish


7 -7:15 p.m., or by appointment

Updated: 10-07-16



Sacred Heart Parish, Verona, was established for a small group of mostly German Bohemians and was first named after St. John Nepomuk. Mass was celebrated by Benedictine priests from Conception Abbey in the local Odkoven Hotel until a church building was erected in 1876. The parish cemetery was established in 1883. Men of the parish taught children in the church until 1888 when the first schoolhouse, a frame building with two rooms, was built. Benedictine Sisters from Arkansas staffed the school for nearly 86 years until the brick school, built in 1913, was closed in 1974. The present brick church was dedicated in 1900 and renamed Sacred Heart.


In conjunction with its 107th anniversary, a museum was established in the church to preserve the history and traditions of the Verona Catholics.

In 1991, ministry to the growing population of Hispanics in the area was begun. Since 1995 a Spanish Mass is celebrated every Sunday. Three CordiMarian sisters came to live in the convent in 1997 and minister to the Catholic Hispanic communities in Verona and surrounding towns.


In 1988, because of the growing shortage of priests, Sacred Heart’s pastor doubled as pastor of Holy Trinity parish, Aurora, as well, and moved his residence there. In 2000, the first Parish Life Coordinator of the two parishes was appointed, along with a Canonical Pastor.

In April 2003 the 90-year-old brick schoolhouse, no longer able to fulfill the parish needs, was demolished. A new hall is under construction.

The vision of that small band of immigrant settlers to live and establish the Catholic faith in Verona in 1874 has thrived and grown. The faithful parishioners of today bear witness to those early pioneers.

Priests served

Herzog, Fr. Leo J., Jun 30, 1937 – Jan 31, 1958
Curran, Fr. Wilfred L., Feb 1, 1958 – Apr 7, 1961
Reker, Fr. Val H., Apr 8, 1961 – Jun 14, 1965
Rochford, Fr. William B., Jun 15, 1965 – Aug 15, 1972
White, Fr. John J., Aug 16, 1972 – Jan 7, 1976
Reynolds, Fr. James L. (temp. Administrator), Jan, 1976 – Jun 30, 1976
Wozniczka, Fr. Stephen Z., OSP, D, 1978
Gregovich, Fr. Lawrence E., Jul 15, 1979 – Aug 1, 1982
Drewelow, Fr. David C., Aug 2, 1982 – Apr 1, 1984
Carlin, Fr. Joseph M., SJ, D, 1984 – 1985, 1985 – 1986
McKenna, Fr. James F., Aug 19, 1986 – Apr 30, 1987
Huggins, Fr. William A. (temp. Administrator), May 4, 1987 – Aug 16, 1987
Morciniec, Fr. Peter J., Aug 17, 1987 – Aug 17, 1998
Saunders, Fr. Allan L., Aug 18, 1998 – Aug 16, 2000
Hulshof, Fr. David F. (Canonical pastor), Aug 17, 2000 – Jan 9, 2006
Braun, Fr. John S. (Canonical pastor), Jul 6, 2006 – Aug 16, 2007
McDevitt, Fr. Michael V. (Canonical Pastor), Jul 1, 2010 – Jul 1, 2011
McLoughlin, Fr. Paul J. (Canonical Pastor), Jul 1, 2011 – Jun 30, 2013
Restrepo, Fr. Ruben D., CM, Jul 1, 2013 – Jul 10, 2014
Grodecki Fr. Henry, CM, Jul 1, 2014 –

Above is compiled from diocesan archives.
“D” designates information compiled from The Catholic Directory or Year Book.

Parish related

GPS coordinates: N36° 57.925’, W093° 47.701’ (click here for map)
Physical address: Sacred Heart Church, 212 2nd St, Verona, MO

Attended from: St. Lawrence Church, 405 7th St., Monett, MO 65708-2051

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