Longmont parish hopes to ‘bring people back into the Catholic faith’ with new church building

Moira Cullings

In his 15 years as pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, Father Frank Maroney has been struck by the potential of the growing Longmont community.

“There is close to 100,000 population here,” said Father Maroney. “According to the statistics, there should be something like 20,000 Catholics in this area.

“We’ve got lots of work to do to try and get out to those who have fallen away a little bit and try to attract them back.”

St. Francis of Assisi, which now has around 1,000 registered families, has taken several steps to evangelize the faith, particularly through its brand-new church building created for parishioners and visitors to enjoy.

“It’s going to enable us to continue to evangelize and grow and bring people back into the Catholic faith,” said parishioner Mike Swedbergh.

Swedbergh, who is part of the parish’s finance committee, explained the new sanctuary will “accommodate the growing families and the people that are moving here that are going to be looking for a new church.

Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila blesses the altar at the new St. Francis of Assisi church in Longmont during a dedication ceremony June 19. (Photo by JoAnn Beldt)

“It gives us the capacity to take care of all those people now,” he said.

The new building was a long time in the making. St. Francis, formerly called Spirit of Peace, initially shared a space with a Presbyterian church before it moved to an office building after experiencing significant growth.

“That became the stepping stone for beginning the process of planning and raising the money for the first phase of the church,” said Father Maroney, who recently retired.

Ray Falce, who has served as chairman for the parish counsel and played a major role in fundraising for the parish, has witnessed parishioners’ excitement surrounding the new building throughout the construction process.

“They always wanted to sneak in and climb under the construction line,” he said with a laugh. “Once they saw the dedication on Wednesday night, the church was packed. They were just overwhelmed with what we did.”

The parish’s new-sanctuary dedication, held on June 19, included Mass celebrated by Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila, followed by a reception.

Those who were close to the project have been inspired by the parish community’s efforts to make the building happen.

A view of the new altar. (Photo by JoAnn Beldt)

“When you think back on all the things that have happened with St. Francis of Assisi in Longmont, it’s a testament to the effectiveness and the work that Father Frank did and the prayerful community that we have here,” said Swedbergh.

“To see people come together and have the ‘can-do, will-do’ kind of attitude and the commitment toward the future of the Longmont community and the next generations is very fulfilling.

“Everybody in the parish should be really proud of the work that they’ve done and very grateful to God for helping us to get through the whole thing,” he said.

Falce is “honored and blessed” to have been a part of the parish’s milestone accomplishment.

“From my perspective, we’re building this larger church for the future,” he said.

Father Maroney agreed.

“A lot of people made sacrifices here,” he said. “I’ve really grown to appreciate this community. They’ve helped me to grow deeper in my faith.”

Featured image by Bob Gudel

COMING UP: Haven’t signed to get the late-term abortion ban on the ballot? Now’s your chance

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If you haven’t had a chance to sign the petition to get Initiative 120 on the ballot this year, this weekend will present many opportunities to do so.

Initiative 120 is a ballot initiative that seeks to prohibit abortions after 22 weeks through birth, with the only exception being if the mother’s life is at risk.

See below for a full list of locations throughout Colorado so sign petitions for Initiative 120.

Sign the Petition | Drop off Notarized Packets | Notary on Site

Aurora – Queen of Peace Catholic Church
11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
13120 E Kentucky Ave, Aurora 80012
In the Narthex

Broomfield – Nativity of our Lord Catholic Church
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
900 W Midway Blvd, Broomfield 80020
Reception Desk Lower Level

Denver – Catholic Charities Office
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
4704 N. Harlan St, Denver 80212 Suite 550

Lakewood – Colorado Christian University
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
8787 W. Alameda Ave, Lakewood 80226
Beckman Center – See Map
Enter campus off Garrison, go east on Cedar

Lone Tree – Panera Bread Atrium
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
9233 Park Meadows Dr, Lone Tree 80124

Windsor – Coffee House 29
11:00 AM – 2:00 PM
1039 Main St #K, Windsor 80550
Behind McDonald’s

CO Springs So Central – Pikes Peak Citizens for Life
9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
707 N Nevada Ave #R, Colorado Springs 80903

CO Springs North – Colorado Christian University Satellite
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
1125 Kelly Johnson Blvd. Suite 105 Co Springs 80921

Castle Rock – Calvary Chapel
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
1100 Caprice Dr, Castle Rock 80109
In the Lobby

Grand Junction – The Pregnancy Center
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
930 Main Street, Grand Junction 81501
970-241-7474

Saturday, 2/15 Signing Only Events**

Colorado Springs – David C Cook Foundation
10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
4050 Lee Vance Dr. Colorado Springs 80918 Upper/east parking lot
720-899-0897

Greeley – Centerplace Shopping Center
1:30 – 3:30 PM
2700 47th Ave, Greeley 80634
Enter off 47th Ave – Look for the sign east of the bank in the parking lot

** No notary at these locations

Sunday, 2/16 Signing Event**

Glenwood Springs – New Creation Church
8:30, 10:30 AM and 6:00 PM Services
44761 US-6, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
217-891-6116

Ongoing Opportunities to Sign

Aurora – Iglesia Rey de Reyes Church
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri 6:00 – 8:00 PM
Saturdays 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
380 S Potomac Street #110 Aurora, 80012
720-899-0897

Boulder – Boulder County GOP Office
Weekdays (M-F) 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
619 Ken Pratt Blvd, Longmont 80501

Greeley – Farmers Insurance
Weekdays (M-F) 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Saturdays 9:00 AM – noon
2990 W 29th St. #1, Greeley 80631

Loveland – Loveland Glass
Weekdays (M-F) 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
630 W 1st Street, Loveland 80537

Windsor – Guardian Self Storage
Mondays and Thursdays 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM Through February 15th
760 E. Garden Dr., Windsor 80550

Colorado Springs – Eddington Eye Care
Weekdays (M-F) 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Exception, Thursdays, open 10-6)
6130 Barnes Rd. Suite 128, Colorado Springs 80922

Castle Rock – Calvary Chapel
Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Wednesdays 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM
1100 Caprice Dr. Castle Rock 80109 (Reception Desk)

Ft. Collins – Larimer County GOP Office
Weekdays (M-F) 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
4020 S College Ave #11, Fort Collins 80525

Woodland Park – Charis Bible College
Weekdays (M-F) 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM
800 Gospel Truth Way, Woodland Park 80863

Estes Park – Ponderosa Realty
Weekdays (M-F) 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
1751 N Lake Ave. Suite 104, Estes Park 80517

Pueblo – A Caring Pregnancy Center
Weekdays (M-Th) 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
500 Colorado Ave, Pueblo 81004

Montrose – Life Choices Family Resource Center
Tuesdays & Thursdays 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Wednesdays 10:00 AM – 7 PM
155 Merchant Drive, Montrose 81403
970-249-4302

Pueblo West – Majestic Baptist Church
Sundays 9:30 – 11:30 AM
494 E Hemlock Dr, Pueblo West 81007

Julesburg – Benson Ag Land Realty
Weekdays (M-F) 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
200 W 4th Street, Julesburg 80737

Denver – La Prensa de Colorado Newspaper
Monday – Thursday from 12:00 PM to 6:30 PM or by appointment
7290 Samuel Drive, #105 Denver 80221
303-287-4105