Our Holy Cross Heritage

Our Heritage

Saint Joseph Church was founded by Fr. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., a Holy Cross priest who also founded the University of Notre Dame. Our rich heritage is especially blessed because Saint Joseph was the first Catholic worshiping community established in South Bend, and our long history is built upon our indelible connection to the Congregation of Holy Cross. Saint Joseph Parish has been entrusted to Holy Cross priests and religious since its establishment in 1853, and we look to the Holy Cross Charism and Constitutions of the Congregation of Holy Cross as guiding points in our own mission. Knowing and celebrating our CSC heritage is vital to maintaining our identity and zeal in faith and works. 
The charism of a religious community is its particular personality within the Church—that which makes it distinctive and sets it apart from others. The Congregation of Holy Cross is an apostolic, Roman Catholic community of priests and brothers committed to common table, common prayer and a common mission. Who we are, what we do and how we do it today are inextricably linked to our history.

CSC History

Rev. Basil Moreau, C.S.C.,
 founded the order in 1837 by joining his group of “auxiliary priests” with an existing group of brothers who were educators. We take our name from the town where Blessed Moreau founded us—the small northwestern French town of Sainte-Croix, which literally means “Holy Cross.” Hence the name of the order is Congregatio a Sancta Cruce (C.S.C.), or “Congregation of Holy Cross.” This little known fact is important to the identity of the congregation and our tradition. This rooting in a local community has shaped the mission of Holy Cross. To this day, we seek to foster deep commitments to Christ and the Church wherever or whomever we serve. We build communities in our parishes, our universities and international missionary locations.

To fill the spiritual and educational void of Post-Revolutionary France, Blessed Moreau called on the priests and brothers of Holy cross to be “educators in the faith,” who with a preferential option for the poor, educate both mind and heart principally in the fields of
education, parish, and mission.

Educators in the Faith

In 1842, Moreau sent 28-year-old Rev. Edward Sorin, C.S.C., and six other brothers to the United States to establish parishes and schools. Fr. Sorin eventually settled in South Bend, Ind., and founded the
University of Notre Dame. Fr. Sorin followed Moreau’s example and established other schools and parishes throughout the United States and Canada. Eventually, the United States Province grew to also include the University of Portland in Oregon, Kings College in Wilkes-Bare, Pa., and Stonehill College in Easton, Mass. We also have 13 U.S. parishes (most with grade schools) and four mission territories (Mexico, Chile, Peru and East Africa). Our missionary efforts also include Holy Cross Family Ministries, which promotes the spiritual well-being of the family through the power of prayer, especially through the Rosary. Holy Cross 
also has two ministries that provide outreach support to the poor and homeless in Arizona and Oregon.

Home  |  About  |  Welcome!  |  Worship  |  Ministries  |  Sacraments  |  School  |  Giving  |  Contact  | Login   

© Saint Joseph Parish • 226 N. Hill St. • South Bend, Indiana 46617 • (574) 234-3134