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West Virginia

Dec 15, 2009 (CNA) -- Charleston, W.Va.,
Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart elevated to Basilica
A Nov. 9 decree from the Congregation for Divine Worship, recently received by Bishop of Wheeling-Charleston Michael J. Bransfield, has elevated the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Charleston, West Virginia to a minor basilica of the Catholic Church.
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Sacred Heart Basilica
Leon Sullivan Way & Virginia St.
Charleston, WV 25301
304-342-8175

From: Sacred Heart Web Site - Parish History

1788 Birthday of "Charles Town," "Clendenin Fort" "Town at the mouth of the Elk River." (1792 Fort Lee).

1832 Catholic priest ministering in West Virginia.

1885 Father Stenger begins collection of funds for new church...financial assistance from prominent Protestants. 1886

1892-1895 $600.00 spent for plans and specifications of new (present) Church. H.B. Lowe of Lexington selected as architect...contract for materials and construction ($30,000.00) awarded to A.F. Withrow Lumber Co. On July 28, 1895, Bishop P.J. Donahue lays cornerstone.

Christmas, 1897 First Mass in new (present) church.

1900 Death of first pastor, Father Stenger. Mourned by all segments of Charleston's people.

April, 1901 Capuchin priests begin ministry at Sacred Heart.

1904 Sisters move into new convent. Capuchin Fathers move to rectory.

1905 First pipe organ.

1909 Erection of marble high altar. Installation of stained glass windows from Munich, Germany.

1911 Installation of bells: St. Richard...2060 lbs. St. Joseph...1500 lbs. Blessed Virgin...700 lbs.

1948 Old church pipe organ replaced by Wurlitzer electronic organ at a cost of $4,500.00. St. Cecilia's Guild start weekly bingo to raise funds for new Kilgen pipe organ. ($31,832.48).

1950-1951 Extensive renovation of interior of Sacred Heart Church.

1952 Front half of present rectory built

1953-1956 The northeast front exit from Church converted to baptistry; two sacristies remodeled; sacristy nearest school converted to "Cry" Room.

1958 Purchase of present pews in Church. ($11,429.00).

1959 First ordination at Sacred Heart Church; Capuchin Father Michael Johnson of Sacred Heart Parish, Capuchin Father Samuel Driscoll of St. Anthony Parish and Father Andrew Arnold of the Wheeling Diocese.

1960 Stained-glass windows repaired.

1961 Exterior of Sacred Heart Church sand-blasted pointed and waterproofed.

1965 Church bells electrified, new light fixtures installed, new front doors purchased, church and choir loft renovated for Parish Centennial.

1966 Sanctuary ceiling adorned with vibrant complex linear painting by artist John L. Baker.

August 13, 1974 Boundaries of Diocese changed to include all and only West Virginia.

October 4, 1974 Diocese of Wheeling changed to Diocese of Wheeling/Charleston with Sacred Heart Church designated as a Co-Cathedral. Sanctuary renovated and refurbished.

1980 After ministering at Sacred Heart Parish for 79 years, Capuchin priests are replaced by Diocesan priests. Rev. P. Edward Sadie becomes rector.

1980-1984 Church air-conditioned; restroom built in church vestibule;
Start-up of Capital Funds Drive (G.I.F.T.) "Growth In Faith Together."
Interior and exterior of Church renovated, stained glass windows restored
Purchase of new Schantz 60 rank Pipe Organ

1985 Dedication of John XXIII Pastoral Center.
Death of Bishop Joseph H. Hodges

1986 Bishop Schulte "welcomed as pastor" of Sacred Heart Co-Cathedral parish

1987 Church sanctuary carpeted. Purchase of new Bishop's Chair, Ambo and Altar, built by Edward Hillenbrand, furniture maker.
Capital Fund Drive under way.

1988 Rev. Robert Herrick named as Associate Rector at Sacred Heart.
Remaining Church furniture purchased.
Dedication of the Cathedral by Bishop Schulte.

1990 Rev. Casey Mahone appointed Associate Rector.

1992 Acquisition of property contiguous to SHGS Parking Lot for additional parking

1993-1994 Purchased additional lot on Broad Street for Sacred Heart Parish and School staff parking
Kneelers in the Church were repaired and re-padded.
New associate, Father Walter Jagela, named to Sacred Heart in June, 1994.

1995 New associate, Father John McDonough named to Sacred Heart.

1997 Parish considers hiring development officer.

June, 1998 New associate Father Paul Hudock named to Sacred Heart

2001 Moved parish offices to 1114 Virginia Street East
Purchased Charleston Newspapers parking lot across from the Church
Continued on plans for a new gathering space and new sacristy.

2002 Started construction of Sacred Heart addition

2003 Church renovation in process. New landscaping and parking lots in process. 2004

2004 Completed Church renovation

2009 Dec 15, 2009 Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart elevated to Basilica
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