Hello Pelham, Welcome

On June 23, 2010, by the decision of Bishop John B.  McCormack of Manchester, two of our Confreres, Fr. Anthony Kuzia CM and Fr. John Sledziona CM will start their mission in St. Patrick’s Parish, Pelham, New Hampshire after years they spent in Concord, NH.   Pelham is a town in Hillsborough County; southernmost place in state of New Hampshire with population of over 12,500 (Est. 2006). When you take I-93 Southward from Concord, NH (until Exit 3, where you must turn right to NH-111 toward Windham) you will get to Pelham, NH after 41 miles.

Addtionally, Pelham is 110 miles North East from DePaul Provincial Residence, Manchester, CT (by I-84E & I-495N) and 155 miles (by same route) North East from Derby, CT, hometown of both Fr. Anthony and Fr. John.

In the letter to St. Patrick’s Parish of April 2010 by bishop John B. MacCormack of Manchester we read:
“I write to inform you that I am appointing Father Anthony Kuzia, CM, as pastor of Saint Patrick Parish, Pelham effective June 9, 2010. Although Fr. Kuzia is a Religious Order Priest, his duties and responsibilities are the same as a Diocesan Priest. Because I have granted him a three-week vacation in between his assignments, I am extending Fr. Eddy’s appointment as Temporary Administrator of Saint Patrick Parish in Pelham until June 23, 2010. I know you will work with Father Kuzia in helping him make a smooth transition.

At the same time, I am pleased to inform you that Fr. John Sledziona CM, the Director of Clergy Formation for the Diocese, will be taking up residence at Saint Patrick Parish effective June 9, 2010. The Vincentian Fathers desire to have their priests live in community and Saint Patrick’s will provide a good setting for that to occur. Fr. Sledziona, is the Director of Clergy Formation for the Diocese, will be in residence with no parish responsibilities…”

Town of Pelham was split from Old Dunstable in 1741, when the border between Massachusetts and New Hampshire was settled. The land that became Pelham had been part of Nottingham, Massachusetts to the west and Dracut, Massachusetts to the east. It was incorporated on July 5, 1746. The town is named after Thomas Pelham-Holles, 1st Duke of Newcastle. Since its early years the population of the town rose 25 times. Of total area of 27 square miles (69.9 km2) only 2% is not land. Jeremy Hill is the highest point in Pelham (577 ft). In 2009, according to Town Report, 31 children were born, 43 marriages (inc. civil unions) held, 30 people died, 38 were burried there.

More information on Pelham, NH can be read from WIKIPEDIA or PELHAM HISTORICAL SOCIETY

St. Patrick's Church (source: Bing.com/maps, Bird View)

St. Patrick’s is the only Roman Catholic parish in Pelham. Belongs to Rockingam Deanery in Diocese of Manchester. It was erected 1946. The last Pastor, Fr. Paul Ruzzo (since September 24, 2008), passed away on November 23, 2009 after many hours long surgery. Rev. On November 30, 2009, Fr. Eddy N. Bisson was appointed temporary administrator of the parish and his mission will complete on June 23.
St.Patrick’s Church will the NEasternmost Vincentian Fathers’ location in the United States.

You may learn more about St. Patrick’s Parish recent activity from their weekly bulletin:
18 April; 25 April; 2 May; 9 May; 23 May; 30 May

There is St.Patrick’s Catholic School in Pelham, too. It is located in church campus next to Rectory and Clubhouse. Founded in 1960 by Saint Patrick Parish, Saint Patrick School was originally called Saint Patrick Convent School, as it was staffed by Sisters of Mercy from nearby Windham, NH. Through the years, more lay teachers were employed, and in the early 1990s the school’s name was officially changed. Today, Saint Patrick School is staffed entirely by state certified lay personnel. Read more about St. Patrick’s School.

Saint Patrick School offers a rich and challenging curriculum in the areas of English, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, Religion, French (Grades 5 – 8), Library (Kindergarten – Grade 4), Computer Technology, Physical Education, Art, and Music. Saint Patrick School teachers are state certified, and the curriculum they teach reflects the requirements outlined by the Diocese of Manchester, NH.

Meet new priests in St.Patrick’s Church, Pelham, NH:
Both, Fr. Tony and Fr. John are native of Derby, Connecticut. Polish Vincentians came to Derby in 1905 and it is their second oldest location in New England. Birthplace is the only one they have in common. Both were ordained priests in Mary Immaculate Seminary, Northampton, PA. Both were teachers in St. John Kanty Prep, Erie, PA, prestigous Vincentian founded and staffed high school and preparatory college. Both studied in Edinboro University. Both were Vocation Directors of New England Province (Fr. John was first, Fr. Tony succeeded him). Since 2006 they both worked in Concord. And now, they two are movin to Pelham.

Rev. Anthony KUZIA CM is priest for 34 years and member of the Congregation of the Mission for 40 years. He is the first priest ordained since autonomous Province of New England was erected in 1975. He was born on July 15, 1949 in Derby, CT. He obtained B.A. in Philosophy from Niagary University and M.Th. from Mary Immaculate Seminary. Besides being pastor of St. Peter’s and Cacred Heart Parishes in Concord Fr. Tony was parochial vicar and again admnistrator of St. Michael’s Parish, Derby, CT; Pastor of Holy Trinity Parish, Lisbon, Maine (he supervised design and construction of the church there). Before coming to Concord he was Vicar for Clergy in the Diocese of Portland, Maine.

Rev. John SLEDZIONA CM is priest for 40 years and member of the Congregation of the Mision for 48 years. He was born on December 23, 1942 in Derby, CT. He obtained M.A. in English from Edinboro University and M.Th. from Immaculate Seminary, Northampton. PA. He was superior of St. John Kanty, Erie and later Principal of Bishop Brady High School, Concord, NH. Whikle being Pastor of St. Peter’s in Concord he was appointed Dean of Concord Deanery. 1996 – 2005 he served as fourth Provincial Superior of Vincentians in New England Province. Next, he was pastor of St. Stanislaus Parish, New Haven, CT. Fr. John is also Board memberr of Vincentian Studies Institute, DePaul University, Chicago, IL and Niagara University, Niagara Falls, NY. Since 2006 he is Director of Clergy Formation for the Diocese of Manchester. Devout preacher and recollectionist.

The whole community of Congregation of the Mission
Province of New England
warmly and cordially welcomes
people of Pelham
and St. Patrick’s parishioners.
We believe, we all
can make friends quickly.


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