St. William Catholic Church
About St. William Parish
Our present parish goes back to 1908, when it was established as St. Aloysius Congregation in Dedham by Bishop Schinner, the first Bishop of the new Diocese of Superior. Little remains of the Village of Dedham in the area of Foxboro. The original Polish community was served by Fr. A. Gagnon from St. Louis Parish in Superior, who offered occasional Masses in their homes. By 1910, a church was built on land donated by Adam Olow and Stanley Malinoski. Funds for the building were raised by Mrs. Andrew Herubin and Mrs. Adam Olow, using reclaimed lumber from a hotel in Dedham. The church was served by several priests from Superior, the most notable being Fr. Frances from St. Adalberts's in the East End of Superior. He was given pastoral care of St. Aloysius in 1919 and provided monthly Masses at the mission. By 1954, Bishop Joseph Annabring established St. Aloysius as a parish with Fr. Cyril Sirek as pastor. Three years later, it was decided to build a new church a mile from Pattison Park on a five-acre parcel of land donated by William Stupak and Robert Mansky. The Extension Society of the U.S. assisted financially and renamed the parish in honor of St. William, the Abbot. Construction of the new church was completed in the summer of 1958 and the first Mass was offered there on September 28, 1958. The blessing and dedication of the parish took place on November 23, 1958, with Bishop Annabring officiating. In 1963, a rectory was added to the church-parish hall complex. Fr. Sirek served as pastor until 1962.
After Fr. Sirek, almost every pastor serving St. William Parish also served as a full-time diocesan official: Fr. Edward Theiler, 1963-1970, Fr. Robert Urban, 1970-1987, Fr. James Horath, 1987-1991, and Fr. Kevin Gordon, 1991-1996. Bishop Raphael Fliss also resided at St. William's from 1980-1985 while serving as Coadjutor Bishop of Superior. After 1996, the parish was served by several interim administrators: Deacon Timothy Kuehn and Ms. Darlene Olson, Parish Director. Fr. Philip Heslin served as Supervising Pastor with Fr. George Votruba as Sacramental Minister. In 1999, Fr. Ronald Olson, a Franciscan, was appointed pastor, while residing as pastor at Holy Assumption Parish in South Superior. Fr. Gabriel Baltes, O.S.B., lived at St. William rectory and provided assistance as resident priest.
On August 3, 2008, St. William Parish became clustered with St. Anthony Parish in Superior and St. Anthony Parish in Lake Nebagamon. Fr. Edwin Anderson became the Sacramental Minister and lived at St. William rectory. Deacon Phil Runser became the Parish Life Coordinator of the 3 parishes and resided at St. Anthony rectory in Superior.
In July 2009, Fr. Anderson became the Parochial Administrator of St. Anthony de Sales, Spooner, St. Catherine, Sarona, and St. Joseph, Shell Lake parishes. Fr. Don Kania began serving as the Sacramental Minister of our 3 parish cluster. He resided at the St. William rectory. Deacon Phil Runser remained as the Parish Life Coordinator.
January 2010 brought new changes for our cluster. Fr. Philip Heslin returned as the Supervising Pastor, only this time he is serving 3 parishes. Fr. Don Kania became the Associate Pastor of the 3 parishes. Fr. Heslin was formerly Moderator of the Curia of the Diocese of Superior, and late in January 2010 he became Monsignor Heslin.
September 2010 brought yet another change to the clustering of St. William. We were again clustered with Holy Assumption Parish in Superior, with Fr. Ron Olson again named as our pastor.
In September 2008 St. William Parish celebrated 100 years of existence. It remains a vibrant community of faith, welcoming many to its variety of religious and social activities. St. William, the Abbot, a hermit-monk, would be very much at home in the beautiful surroundings of Pattison Park, which is home for many of those who worship here.