History of St. Maurice
Way back in 1969, there was a piece of property in Broward County that was known as “Smith’s Stables”. The owner had a barn where he kept a number of horses, a shop for his machines, a home with a swimming pool for his family, and a very large open field for the horses to roam. He sold all that to the Archdiocese of Miami on April 30, 1969 for $151, 763.
On June 12, 1970, Archbishop Coleman Carroll decided to use that property and established the parish of St. Maurice and asked Father David Russell to be the first pastor. Soon after, the new pastor and the people came together and worked very hard in transforming that stable into a church, the shop into a chapel, and Mr. Smith’s home into a rectory.
Father Russell was a dynamic preacher and people came from all parts of the county in order to become members of a community of faith that was filled with joy. In the month of November of that year, this new parish held its first Country Fair to raise funds to support its different ministries.
1974 was a sad time for the parish when Father Russell was transferred to another parish in Dade County. The new pastor was Father Frederick Brice. He was here for only a short time and was reassigned to another parish in 1975.
In January 1976, St. Maurice welcomed Father Sean Mulcahy as its next pastor and were blessed by his leadership for the next 22 years. Father Sean continued the tradition of the Country Fair and used the profits to support the construction of a new baptismal font, a new social hall, an education building, and to support the Hunger Program which he created to feed hungry people throughout the world. Many wonderful things happened in those 22 years.
1998 was once more a sad time for the parish when Father Sean left. In October 1998, Archbishop Favalora appointed Father Joseph Cinesi as the new pastor and during the short time he was here he remodeled the rectory and made some other improvements. He left towards the end of 1999 and Archbishop Favalora appointed Father Roger Holoubek as the next pastor on January 08, 2000. For the next nine years, the people of St. Maurice did some remarkable things. They created a new early childhood education center for small children and renovated the chapel, the restrooms, and made many other improvements. They initiated a Mass in Spanish and developed many programs and ministries for Hispanics. They created a new parish website that is probably one of the best in the Archdiocese and promoted the pastoral care to the grieving and the sick. After reading the U. S. bishops pastoral letter “Communities of Salt and Light”, the pastor came to the belief that justice was an essential part of parish life and introduced different social ministry programs like JustFaith, JustMatters, and BoldJustice.
Because of the downturn in the national economy, in 2009 Archbishop Favalora announced a restructuring plan for a number of parishes in the Archdiocese. Part of that plan was the merging of Resurrection Parish in Dania Beach with St. Maurice Parish. On October 01, 2009, the people of St. Maurice while sharing the sadness of the people of Resurrection Parish, nonetheless joyfully welcomed these good people. It was a great loss for the people of Resurrection parish but those who came to St. Maurice have enriched this parish community with their faith and love.
So that is a brief history of our parish family from 1969 to 2009. Our future? Only God knows that. One thing is for sure, however —- we have a rich history and have been blessed by God so many times with wonderful people who are alive and loving.