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To Learn More About Father Tom, check the past bulletins:

*July 28 Bulletin, Celebrating the 12th anniversary of Father Tom's Ordination, with details of his priestly journey.

*July 21 Bulletin, Information about Father Tom's installation as pastor of St. Patrick and Most Holy Redeemer/St. Canice.  Archbishop will preside at Installation Masses at St. Patrick and Most Holy Redeemer on July 26.

*July 7, 2019 Bulletin, Information about Father Tom's early life.


            Parish Secretary Sue McDonough

            Parish Office Hours:
            M-F 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

            Telephone:               507.334.6002

                             Emergency Number  507.334.8267
                             Email:   spshieldsville@gmail.com

            Parish Bookkeeper: Arleen Roberts.
            Call office or email to bk.spshieldsville@gmail.com

Bulletin Deadline:     Information submitted in writing to parish office by noon Wednesday.                                                                               


              Faith Formation Coordinator and
              Safe Environment Coordinator             
              Heather Richardson             
              Email:  ff.spshieldsville@gmail.com


     Music Director: Alissa Simones (R)  
     Asst. Director:  Sharon Kaisershot (L)
      Call Office

            Fatima Prayer Group: Georgia Redman  
            (All Welcome Tuesdays 7:30 a.m.)  

Council of Catholic Women (CCW):  Denise Haaland


Call or Email Office for Phone Numbers

Elgin Trcka, Dan Pumper

Parish Pastoral Council Chair
Mark Lessman

Finance Committee Chair
Harry Redman

Prayer Line 
(To place a request)
Ruth Spaetgens 

Cemetery Association     
John McDonough 
Parish Nurse


Elected Members:
Contact Office for Phone Numbers
Terms Expire June 30, 2021: Denise Flicek, Mark Lessman (chair)
Terms Expire June 30, 2022: Tim Hunt, Don Jensen
Terms Expire June 30, 2023: Matt Ness, Mike Paukert

Appointed Representative Members:
Contact Office for Phone Numbers
CCW Representative: Denise Haaland
Faith Formation Representative: Heather Richardson
Finance Council Representative: Harry Redman
Music & Liturgy Representative: Sharon Kaisershot
Maintenance: Larry Smisek
Trustees:  Elgin Trcka, Dan Pumper

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The Parish of St. Patrick is the oldest Irish Catholic parish in Rice County and the second oldest Irish Catholic parish in the State of Minnesota. General James Shields founded the settlement of Shieldsville in the 1850’s and worked very hard to get Irish immigrants to move into the Shieldsville area. Land could be purchased for $2 per acre. In 1856 Bishop Cretin sent word to build a church on Dodd Road. Each man in the parish hauled his allotted amount of logs to the saw mill on Lake Mazaska. Carpenters from St. Paul build the church for $800.

St. Patrick depended upon missionary priests until 1870 when Father Charles Robert was assigned as parish priest. Soon the church was too small for the ever-increasing congregation so he planned for a new stone church. The church, with a seating capacity of 620 people was completed in 1880 at a cost of $16,000. The walls were adorned with elaborate art work on the walls and ceiling. During this time the statues of Christ, the Blessed Virgin, St. Joseph and St. Patrick were donated by parishioners along with the stained glass windows, which cost $100 each. The parsonage, built at the same time, cost $1,000. In April 1888 the church was struck by lightning and severely damaged. Damage was repaired and the congregation was able to celebrate Mass in the church again beginning Christmas Day 1888.

The church and parish hall were remodeled and redecorated in the 1960’s under the direction of Father John Molloy, who served the parish for 53 years. Father John Joyce worked with Father Molloy during this time and took over Pastoral duties in 1962 and served the parish for another 20 years.

A new parish house was built in 1982, during the 1981 – 1992 term of Father Joseph Pinkosh. The house was funded in part by new parish celebrations such as the Fall Festival (celebrated the 1st Sunday in October) and the Grand Party (celebrated in May). These and other now traditional events grew from work by newly formed parish organizations as the Parish Council, Council of Catholic Women and Men’s Club.

On July 29, 2002 lightning struck for the second time in our history, totally destroying the church. Planning and rebuilding continued for two years and our new facility was dedicated on August 1, 2004 with over 900 people in attendance. Our new facility includes the new church which holds 450, social hall which holds up to 400, six classrooms and two offices. St. Patrick still holds the Fall Festival, Grand Party and has added to our annual events: a St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, Ladies Choir Summer Concert and Holiday Open House.

Following Father Pinkosh’s administration, St. Patrick shared priests with the Faribault churches. Father Tim Dornfeld served 1992-1993 followed by Father Dave Kohner in 1994-1995. St. Patrick then clustered with Most Holy Redeemer in Montgomery, with Father George Grafsky as pastor, until 2003.  Father Barry Schneider, retired OFM priest moved into the parish house and served the parish alone as pastor for only 7 months until hospitalized with a stroke.

In June 2004 St. Patrick clustered with Divine Mercy in Faribault and St. Canice in Kilkenny, with  Father Kevin Finnegan serving as the cluster pastor. In 2005, the St. Patrick/Divine Mercy cluster continued under Father Finnegan, but St. Canice was replaced by St. Michael’s in Kenyon. These 3 parishes continued together from 2005 until 2012.

On July 1, 2012 St. Patrick again clustered with Most Holy Redeemer in Montgomery and St. Canice, Kilkenny, welcoming Father George Kallumkalkudy as pastor.  Father Marvin Klaers, retired priest, came to live in our parish house in January 2012, helping out by celebrating Mass, being present at Faith Formation classes, and visiting the sick, homebound and parish families.

In August 2014, Father Victor Valencia began as pastor of the St. Patrick/Most Holy Redeemer/St. Canice cluster. Father Victor  is from the Phillipines, a country that is nearly 90% Catholic.  He grew up in a vibrant church community life, and says that "having been part of a generation that struggled to liberate ourselves from the Marcos dictatorship, faith in a God that redeems his people has been a great source of strength and hope for all of us".   Father Victor was with us for five years, until July 1, 2019 when he was appointed pastor of the Church of Saint Jerome in Maplewood.

Father Tom Niehaus became our pastor in July 2019 from the Diocese of Winona.  He is one of six children, of whom three are priests and one is a Sister.  He is associated with Companions of Christ and lives with two other Companions of Christ priests in Le Center.

NOTE: For More Detailed Historical Accounts, see:

             -- History of Our Parish by Catherine Spartz, 1971
             -- Our Heritage Goes On by Tracy Velishek, 2004