Since its founding in 1845 as Cincinnati’s first Catholic church, St. Francis Xavier Church has been infused with the Jesuit charism. The church strives to create a culture of solidarity that transcends parish boundaries. This is reflected in the parish’s wide-ranging community, which spans 215 zip codes.
The story of the parish began in 1819 when seven Catholic families in what is now the Cincinnati metropolitan area built a church, which would become St. Francis Xavier Church in 1845. By 1856 the number of people attending was so great that a new building was planned, and five years later the first Mass was celebrated in the new church, the same one that is still used today.
In the years since Vatican II, the parish has seen progress in the liturgical spirit. Lay persons, men and women, were welcomed as lectors and Eucharistic ministers. A wonderful liturgical choir was developed, and communion service was introduced to accommodate downtown workers. Meanwhile, the tradition of weekday and Sunday Masses continued as it had for over a century and a half.
St. Francis Xavier Church has many active ministries to keep people involved in parish life. This includes music ministry, a worship commission that meets monthly, outreach ministries and social activities. The parish’s unique health ministry promotes spiritual growth through healthy living by raising awareness on health issues and providing resources to the parish and the larger community.