| St. Francis of Assisi Parish, School to celebrate
A gala celebration for St. Francis of Assisi Parish and School in Concord— which are both observing anniversaries (60th for the parish and 50th for the school) this year — will be held Oct. 3 in the Garaventa Center at Carondelet High School in Concord.
Tickets for the gala are $75 per person, includes cocktails. For reservations or for more information, contact the school office at 925-837-2977 or visit the website at www.sfaconcord.org/50.
The Catholic community in the Ygnacio Valley went without a church for its first 100 years. Clergy from Walnut Creek and Concord provided pastoral care for the residents there until the 1955 creation of Most Precious Blood Parish. The new parish was under the direction of the founding pastor Father (later monsignor) Edward T. Varni for 36 years.
The parish's first Masses took place in MacFarlane Funeral Parlor, and later at the Japanese Cultural Center until the first church building was built. San Francisco Auxiliary Bishop Merlin Guilfoyle presided at the dedication services. The parish school was built and opened in 1965.
Tragedy hit the community on Dec. 27, 1982, when an arsonist set fire to a small chapel in front of the church that spread and grew into a four alarm fire that claimed the church. When a new church was dedicated, the parish also received a new name that honors St. Francis of Assisi.
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