The Church of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary was established as a parish on September 11, 1960 when Fr. Joseph Ryan was appointed as its first official pastor. Some months earlier, the Most Reverend Joseph F. Rummell (Archbishop of New Orleans) had observed that there were some 300 families dependent on the mission church in Denham Springs. Today the parish numbers more than 3,800 families living in an area covering about 275 square miles served by diocesan priests.
It is a long way from the small beginnings in the early 1900’s when diocesan priests from Baton Rouge would travel, once a month, by railroad chapel car, to minister to some twelve (12) Catholic families. It was one of these priests, Reverend Arthur Drossaerts (later Archbishop of San Antonio), who in 1916 initiated the construction of the first Catholic Church in Denham Springs. In 1920, the Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) were given the care of the whole of Livingston Parish and the Catholic community in Denham Springs became a mission attached to Saint Margaret Parish (Albany). Still a mission in the late 1950’s, Immaculate Conception had grown to the point that a resident priest cared for its members.
The missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate served the people of Immaculate Conception Parish for more than sixty years. In the summer of 1983, the Oblate Fathers were called to other pastoral fields and the parish was then entrusted to the care of the Diocese of Baton Rouge.
Today under the guidance of Fr. Frank Uter, Pastor, Immaculate Conception Church is a community of more than 3,800 families and has been blessed abundantly by God. We are grateful. We ask the Lord to deepen our spirit of faith, to build us into a community of loving and compassionate people who reach out to share the good news with the whole world.