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St. John the Evangelist Church History
The first church was an 18-foot by 24-foot cabin located along Main Street. It also served as the pastor’s living quarters. A second church was built beginning in 1847 at the site of the present church. The new structure was 107-feet by 60-feet, big enough for the 89 families in the parish.
 
The first Mass at the new church took place November 1, 1853, even though it was unfinished. At that time, the average number of days of labor contributed by members was 123 per year and monetary donations averaged $54.54 annually. The church would finally be enclosed in its entirety in 1855.
 
Work on the church continued slowly because of an economic downtown and the cholera epidemic in Delphos, which claimed half the population. With the passing of Fr. Bredeick, he left in his final will 18 acres of land to the parish on which was built the church, schools, rectory and convent where they are now located. However, due to the expansion of the community and parish since its founding days and the addition of a 150-foot-high church steeple in 1863, a new church was needed in 1877. The structure of this church, completed in 1881, is the church that stands today in which we celebrate the Mass, the sacraments, and give glory to God.
 
Throughout the changes of technology and amenities to where we are in this day and age, several repairs and renovations took place at the church over the course of the decades since: roof repairs, the church was frescoed, and church rewired, the stained glass windows replaced, including the donation of the “Good Shepherd” window, and placing stone as the exterior of the church to prevent inevitable wear and tear.
 
In 1944, in the centenary year of St. John the Evangelist parish, the church underwent many renovations with the addition of a modern Baptismal font and Narthex vestibule, beautiful new doors, and the interior of the church frescoed and redecoration of the altar and statues. On October 15, 1944, the parish would hold the Centennial Celebration of the parish with great solemnity and beautiful décor to celebrate this special occasion. In the years following, more changes would take place for functional and cosmetic reasons: from fixing cracks in the brick and cement and incorporating a heating system, to putting in a new floor, carpets, pews, lights, etcetera. In 1967, an extensive renovation plan was made for the church which included meticulous work and several areas of the church were highlighted with pure 23-karat gold.
 
Other remodeling and renovations have taken place as a result of progress in technology. In the recent past, an extensive landscaping project was conducted and completed in 1998, as well as the completion of a $2.4 million church renovation, which includes the addition of the outdoor plaza and the remodeling of the interior of the church – this is the church that you see to this very day! 
201 N. Pierce St., Delphos, OH 45833
Phone 419-695-4050 Dial option 1 for Emergency
Fax 419-695-4060
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