Important Dates in History of Holy Cross Parish and Holy Spirit Mission
First recorded Mass, St. Alphonsus Mission established in Hamburg
First Mass in Crossett
Missionary priests visited occasionally
St. Alphonsus Mission moved to Crossett and was named Holy Cross
First Mass in new church on June 13, Holy Cross was dedicated on Oct. 19
Present rectory was purchased at 808 Maple St.
First resident pastor appointed
Second rectory purchased, first rectory used as a parish hall
Parish hall built adjoining the church, first rectory used as residence again
Parish hall dedicated on Oct. 7, Twenty-fifth anniversary celebrated
Catholic Center in Hamburg established
First Mass in Hamburg on Feb. 9
Holy Spirit Church dedicated
Thirty-fifth anniversary of Holy Cross celebrated
Holy Cross Church completely destroyed by fire, May 11
Groundbreaking for new building, Feb. 2
Dedication of new building, Nov. 22


In 1948, the Holy Cross Mission was established in the western part of Ashley County to serve the growing number of Roman Catholics. Mass was celebrated at Jones Funeral Home Chapel. Five Catholic families with the support of the Crossett Company, a forest products operation, and the Catholic Extension Society, raised the funds to build a wooden structure at 808 Maple Street. The church was dedicated by Bishop Albert Fletcher on October 10, 1954, and remained in use until May 1995, when it burned to the ground.


Diocesan priests who served Holy Cross Mission during its early years were Fathers Joseph Enderlin, Martin Busby, Robert Boyle, Raymond O'Dwyer, Bernard Malone, James Walters and Louis Janesko.


In 1965, Father John O'Donnell was appointed as the first resident pastor of Holy Cross parish. The house next to the church, which had been purchased for use as a hall and classrooms, was converted into a rectory. Another house was purchased in 1969 for use as a rectory and the former rectory was once again used as the parish hall.


In 1969 Father John Kettler assumed the pastorate of Holy Cross and following the guidelines issued by Vatican Council II, the first parish council was formed. Father Richard Strock became pastor in 1971 and began the process to build a multi-use addition to the church, which was to serve as a parish hall, kitchen and classrooms. Before this addition was completed Father Kevin McCarthy replaced him, but the building plans proceeded and the new parish hall was completed in 1974.


In 1975 the Glenmary Home Missioners assumed responsibility for southeast Arkansas. This religious order, headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, ministers in the areas of the South and Appalachia with few Catholics and many unchurched. Father Charles Hughes was the first Glenmary pastor. He was followed by Glenmary Fathers Tom Charters, Jerry Dorn, Del Holmes and Vic Subb.


In 1987 Holy Spirit Mission in Hamburg was established. A former Protestant church was purchased and renovated for use of the small number of Catholics in this part of Ashley County.


The original Holy Cross church building was completely destroyed by fire on May 11, 1995. After two and one-half years of planning and re-building the new church was dedicated on November 22, 1997, by Bishop Andrew McDonald on the new seven-acre site at 2400 South Main. The new structure will accommodate 200 for Mass and there is a parish hall, kitchen, four classrooms and two offices.


At the present time there are approximately sixty-five families in the parish. There is a high participation by the parishioners in all areas of parish ministry.

If you would like to send a donation or would like to have more information, please contact:
Holy Cross Catholic Church
PO Box 1245
Crossett AR 71635
If you are unable to help us at this time, please keep our intentions in your prayers. Thank you