Parish

HISTORY OF IMMACULATE CONCEPTION PARISH

Rev Bohl was assigned by the Newark Diocese to serve as the first pastor, which he did from 1910 to January, 1917, when he died. The cornerstone of Immaculate Conception Church was laid in 1910, and the construction of the building began with a basement auditorium, classrooms and a meeting room on the first floor, and the upstairs church on the second floor. The Church was dedicated in May, 1913. Subsequently a house was purchased next door to the church and school. It has served as the rectory from the time of the first pastor to the present.
Upon the death of Father Bohl, Father William S. Condon was assignedas the second pastor.
On February 17, 1917, he began his pastorate and he served until 1956.
For a brief period during his illness in 1955, Rev. Joseph A. Hearns was assigned as acting administrator.
Msgr. Condon, went to his family home in Boston where he died in 1956.
After the death of Msgr. Condon, the third pastor, Father Thomas J. Donnelly, was assigned in November 1956.

Rev. Donnelly was born in Bayonne, N.J., on May 23, 1907. He was ordained a priest on June 10, 1933.

Shortly after his arrival, Father Donnelly began the building program that was to take place during the next three years and result in the building of the new church alongside the existing rectory, a parish hall attached to the church, a convent, and a re-modeled school. On July 1, 1977, on the occasion of the retirement of Msgr. Donnelly as pastor, Father Alfred J. Kowalski was assigned as the fourth pastor.

Fr. Kowalski was born in Newark, on January 1925, and was ordained as a priest on May 19, 1951. Father Kowalski served the parish through the various demographic and ethnic changes which have affected the entire church of Newark. During his time, the parish became more multicultural, with an increase in the Hispanic population, and he began to service them. He modified the Church interior. During his tenure the Filipino Community was also welcome with the weekly novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help. On February 1, 2000, Father Jorge E. Chacon was assigned as the fifth pastor upon the retirement of Fr. Kowalski.

Fr. Chacon was born in Ibague, Colombia, South America, on December 9, 1944. He was ordained as a priest in the same town on October 6, 1974. Fr. Chacón came to the United States in 1979, was incardinated into the Archdiocese on October 9, 1986. He served in various parishes and as director of the Archdiocesan Office of Hispanic Apostolate before coming to Immaculate Conception. He is our present pastor.