St. Stephen Church in Winooski to close, future of property unclear

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The St. Stephen Catholic Church in Winooski, founded 150 years ago, will officially close on July 1. 

A letter was sent to parishioners on the first weekend of June, said Father Stephen Hornat, current pastor of St. Stephen, informing them that the church would hold its final Mass on June 28. 

Hornat said that the parish council had been notified by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington that no priest would be assigned in the future.

“It’s an official closure,” Hornat said. The church will be temporarily available for funerals. No current plans for the building have been announced, although Hornat expects the church would be “up for sale” unless the diocese can come up with another use for it.

St. Stephen Parish was founded in 1870, and a church was built on a parcel of land on Barlow St. between 1871-72, according to the book “Images of America: Winooski” by Al Blondin and Anastasia Pratt with the Winooski Historical Society. The current building, with its white marble exterior, was constructed in 1928.

Hornat said that some congregation members have already made plans to attend nearby churches such as St. Francis Xavier in Winooski and St. Lawrence and Holy Family in Essex Junction.

More Winooski news: Renovated Myers Memorial Pool will not open for 2020 summer due to COVID-19

Contact Ethan Bakuli at (802) 556-1804 or ebakuli@freepressmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @BakuliEthan.

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