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“St. John’s R. C. Church at Milford. The first Masses were celebrated, at Milford, in the Central Hotel in the 1890’s through the courtesy of Frank H. Kramlich who conducted the hotel at that time. The first agitation toward the erection of a church was started in 1896. On Dec. 8, 1909, the present site containing 11,280 sq. ft. of land was purchased from the Grier’s for $350.00. The Rev. T. F. Waldron of Holy Cross Church in Dover worked and begged to secure funds to erect the present church. The contract to build was awarded on Feb. 21, 1910, to Joseph T. Rogers of Milford.

The dedication services were held on June 26, 1910. Father Waldron conducted a regular Mass at 7 o’clock. At 10:45 A. M. the service of dedication, by Bishop John J. Monaghan was started. A procession of priests was formed and circled the grounds as Bishop Monaghan, in the lead, blessed the ground and the four corners of the building while the dedicatory choral was being sung. They then proceeded into the sacristy. Bishop Monaghan conferred the Pontifical Blessing upon those present. The name “St. John’s” was selected in honor of the Bishop. The dedicatory sermon was delivered by Vicar- General John A. Lyons. Solemn High Mass was celebrated by the Rev. James L. McSweeney, assisted by Fathers Hanley and Dougherty. The afternoon sermon was preached by the Rev. Father Hanley. The choir from Holy Cross Church at Dover furnished the music. Between the two services the Bishop, the priests and the choir were entertained at dinner in the Central Hotel.

The church was incorporated on Jan. 7, 1912. On Apr. 26, 1912, Bishop Monaghan deeded the property to St. John’s Church. On Jan. 7, 1944, Wm. R. Murphy and his sister, Gueneviere O’Brien, donated a lot on the north side of Seabury Ave. as a site for the proposed new church.” (1)

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Text Source:

1. Frank R. Zebley, The Churches of Delaware, Wilmington, Delaware, 1947, p. 256, 258.

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