Sunday, June 1, 2008

Fr. Francis van der Bom - first resident pastor of St. Mary's

At the age of 31, Fr. Francis van der Bom, was sent to St. Mary's East Saginaw on September 30, 1866 to be the first resident pastor. For 23 years, this zealous priest labored in the East Saginaw parish. His achievements were many: making an addition to the school, building the Rectory, aiding in the establishment of St. Mary's Hospital and St. Vincent's Orphans Home and founding Calvary Cemetery.

In recognition of his "outstanding contributions to the welfare of the citizens of Saginaw without distinction as to race, color or creed," Father van der Bom was elected to the Saginaw Hall of Fame on May 30, 1966. One of a select number of 14 outstanding Saginawians to win the honor, Father van der Bom became the first clergyman so designated.

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