St. Bernadette Church holds final mass in Evergreen Park

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Sunday, June 30, 2024
St. Bernadette Church holds final mass in Evergreen Park
St. Bernadette Church held its final mass Sunday in Evergreen Park before merging with Queen of Martyrs to form St. Gianna Parish.

EVERGREEN PARK, Ill. (WLS) -- It was a bittersweet day Sunday for St. Bernadette Church in Evergreen Park.

The church held its final mass.

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In 2022, the Archdiocese of Chicago unified Queen of Martyrs and St. Bernadette Churches to form St. Gianna Parish.

Current and former members of St. Bernadette packed the pews for the mass. At the end of the service, St. Bernadette's main crucifix was loaded onto an Evergreen Park fire truck and was slowly transported 27 blocks to Queen of Martyrs, the new home of St. Gianna Parish.

ABC7 spoke with St. Gianna's pastor along with church members about the significance of today's mass.

"It's a sad day you know, but also a day we focus on our faith, that we are not just about a building, but we are the living body of Christ," St. Gianna Parish Rev. Benedykt Pazden said.

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"My wife and I got married here," church member John Woolley said. "All our kids were baptized here, received their sacraments here. It's really been our homes our source of friendship and camaraderie in the neighborhood."

Church members had the chance to say their final goodbyes during the service.

Members also said they will always be grateful for the memories they made at St. Bernadette.