The Buildings -
The site of St. Patrick's
Church and school was acquired in 1955 by Monsignor Thomas F.
O'Reilly who was the long-time pastor of St. Anthony's Church and
unquestionably the mover and doer of things Catholic in Casper,
Wyoming. Casper was growing rapidly; moving and building
eastward. The continued growth and the increase in the number
of Catholic families clearly necessitated the establishment of the
The boundaries this new parish
would encompass were far reaching: touching the Natrona-Converse
county line on the east; Elk Street (approximate) on the west;
eleven and one-half miles to the north; and twelve miles to the
south. Within these boundaries lay 860 square miles.
O'Reilly, who acted as project administrator during the
construction, immediately put into motion the machinery of creation
and architects Goodrich and Wilking drew the plans for what was to
be the largest Catholic church building in the state of Wyoming.
Ground was broken in October
1961. The church was constructed in a modified, modern
Romanesque design in the shape of a cross, or cruciform - a
traditional design for Catholic churches.
Botticino marble was used in
both the main and side altars as well as the baptismal font.
The altars were designed and executed by Ecclesiastical Arts, Ltd.
of Dallas, Texas. They were quarried and worked in Pietro
Santa, Italy. All three altars contain relics of martys of the
church - traditional in the construction of altars used for
celebration of the Holy Sacrifice. A sepulchre in the main
altar contains a relic of St. Patrick from his burial place in
Downpatrick, County Down, Ireland.
The tabernacle, sanctuary, and
Baptistry gates were fashioned in bronze and were made in
Holland. According to the Casper Star-Tribune of
Sunday, November 25, 1962, the Baptistry, which was connected to the
church on the south side by a brick archway, was the subject of much
comment in the community. It was designed with seven sides to
symbolize the seven sacraments of the church. the north
entranceway of the church also elicited considerable comment as the
fifty foot bell tower dominated the area which was mostly
residential at that time.
The Stations of the Cross and
the other wood carvings in the church were created by German artists
in Oberammergau, Germany. Because the statues and the Stations
of the Cross did not arrive in time for the dedication,
Ecclesiastical Arts, Ltd. kindly supplied substitutions.
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Patrick's Catholic Church of Casper, Wyoming
Design by First
Type Graphics, Worland, Wyoming