History Supplement



St. John's celebrated the Diamond Jubilee in 1953. The forward is copied from the Diamond Jubilee publication.   In 1978 a Centennial History was published.  The history of St. John's was copied from the centennial publication.  The acknowledgement is from that publication also.


On this date over 1900 years ago the Holy Spirit of God descended upon the Apostles chosen by Christ and gave them the strength and cour≠age to preach the gospel to every creature of the then civilized world, bap≠tizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. That commission entrusted to them was taken up, first by St. Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles, later by a Patrick and Boniface in Ire≠land and Germany respectively. Still later, the torch of faith was carried to America by European Missionaries. With the influx of settlers into

Minnesota and more specifically Meeker County, there was need for a clergy and churches for a people treasuring a faith gained from Christ and sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

The region known as the "Big Prairie" west of the "Big Woods" is the special setting of this booklet, but more definitely the townships com≠prising the parish of St. John.

The history of any single parish must be seen against the back≠ground of the age in which it grew, and yet the twilight of uncertainty has already thrown its shadows, and the night of forgetfulness seems about to descend and forever obscure many incidents in spite of the zealous efforts of competent historians. For much of the material used we wish to acknowledge our indebtedness to the older parishioners, Lam≠sons Condensed History of Meeker County, A Random Historical Sketch by A. C. Smith, the book, Album History and Biography of Meeker County, and the "Thesis on Litchfield" by Father Quinn.

We have thought that the best knowledge and understanding of St. John's would be obtained by dividing the subject under the headings: The Place, The Priests, and The People. We will try to follow that division whenever possible.

J. J. Campbell

Darwin, Minnesota
Feast of Pentecost, 1953


For much of the resource material used in the preparation of this sketch, we wish to acknowledge our indebtedness to older parishioners, who provided many interesting details, Diamond Jubilee of St. John's booklet, The First One Hundred Years by Patrick J. Casey, and the "Thesis on Litchfield" by Father Quinn.

Special credit must also be given to the members of the committee who researched, wrote and typed the material for this booklet. Our thanks to Mrs. James Hansen, Mrs. Frank Orzolek, Mrs. Ben Kelly. We cannot overlook the time and effort of the General Steering Committee for our Centennial Celebration, as well as all the members of the parish who volunteered to assist these chair people:
General Chairman-Thomas Katlack
Dining Hall- Mrs. Orland Nelson
Activities- Mrs. Thomas Crowe
Liturgy- Mrs. Merle Larson


Serving the communities of Darwin, Dassel and Cokato

St John's Catholic Church
106 North 4th Street,

Darwin, MN 55324