The History of Our Lady of Grace
Our Lady of Grace parish began February 17, 1946 when Reverend Louis W. Forrey offered the first Mass for the parish on the stage at the Edina Theater at 50th and France. One hundred sixty-five families made up the new parish, coming mostly from St. Thomas the Apostle and Christ the King parishes. The community continued to celebrate Mass in the theater for three years while the first part of the building complex was constructed. On May 29, 1949, Mass was first celebrated in the new building, which served as a chapel, school, rectory, and convent.
Our Lady of Grace continued to grow until Sunday Masses overflowed and the school was overcrowded. As is typical of the "Let's get it done" attitude of the Our Lady of Grace community, a new church, school addition, and convent were built in 1957. Growth has continued in our community, and in 1984, after a feasibility study, work was initiated to bring about our beautiful current worship space and gymnasium. On June 22, 1986, we celebrated our first Mass in the new building, and on September 18, 1988, we completed our new worship space with the dedication of an Austin pipe organ, one of the finest instruments of its kind in the world.
Our Lady of Grace completed a new addition to the school in 1999, and continued its growth with the addition of a new library annex, updated office space in the school, and an elevator.
As part of a successful "Honoring Our Past, Building Our Future Capital Campaign" in 2009, the parish was able to update our worship spaces, Commons, and dining room; and install a new sound system, sprinkler system, and security system. In addition, we have reduced our debt and strengthened our school through additions to our school endowment fund. In 2010, we were able to install a geo-thermal heating and cooling system to our campus.
Our Lady of Grace today is a community of more than 2,500 registered families and individuals. Our pastor is Fr. Kevin Finnegan, and our Parochial Vicar is Fr. Neil Bakker. We have approximately 690 students in our school (K-8) and 700 students in our Faith Formation program, which includes Sunday School through Confirmation.
January of 2012 marked the merger of the St. Louis Park parish of Most Holy Trinity into the church of Our Lady of Grace. We celebrate and welcome all into the Our Lady of Grace family.