St. Philip

Prior to 1896, Melbourne and its vicinity were a part of St. Joseph Parish at Four Mile. At that time the Catholics of the Melbourne area proposed to build a church of their own at Melbourne, with the intention of eventually separating from St. Joseph Parish. The proposal of the Melbourne people received the approval of Bishop Maes, and the church was begun under the direction of Reverend Joseph Haustermann. On November 8, 1908, the cornerstone was laid by Very Reverend Ferdinand Brossart, V.G. During the pastorate of Father Haustermann at Four Mile, the construction of the church at Melbourne went forward, but it was not brought to completion at that time and could not be opened for divine services. As the congregation at Melbourne was already heavily in debt, Bishop Maes directed that no additional indebtedness was to be incurred at that time.

 Father Haustermann’s successor at Four Mile, Reverend Charles Woeste, took up the matter of completing the Melbourne church. Likewise in September, 1909, a parish school was opened. In the autumn of 1909 and the spring of 1910, voluntary contributions were solicited for the interior church furnishings, and the church was completed. On May 16, 1910, Bishop Maes solemnly dedicated the new church under the patronage of St. Philip. At that time the St. Philip congregation became an independent parish. 

The latest addition to the parish plant was a recreation hall, erected under the direction of Reverend Francis B. Donnelly. The cornerstone was laid by Bishop Mulloy on July 5, 1948. The new hall, a two-story brick and concrete structure, situated at the rear of the school building as an addition, serves as a parish auditorium and recreation center. Also in 1948, the parish purchased the property opposite the church for an athletic field and parking lot.

 St. Philip Parish at present has a congregation of ninety families. 


excerpted from History of the Diocese of Covington, Kentucky, on the Occasion of the Centenary of the Diocese, 1853-1953, by Rev. Paul E. Ryan