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Evansville, Indiana
December 18, 1987     The Message
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December 18, 1987
 

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III I St. Vincent de P00ul Msgr. Roman Vollmer, above left, ordained in 1945, was named pastor in 1982. His service has included parishes at St. Wendel, Evansville, Gibson County, and Loogootee; teaching at Mater Dei, and a state chaplaincy for the Knights of Columbus and the Daughters of Isabella. He was the founding pastor of Resurrection Church, Evansville. The church interior, above right, was remodelled under the administration of Father Timothy Tenbarge, and rededicated in 1982. One of the stations of the cross, right, shows the handcarved.wood grained beauty of the stations, the crucifixion scene and a- representation of Christ triumphant. The carvings, by William Weberding, Batesville, hid., were added by Msgr. Vollmer. Text And Photos By Paul Leingang Parish and orphanage history linked St. Vincent Church has several begilmings -- as a parish, orphanage, seminary, and as a spacious home for a retiring bishop. The orphanage served the Diocese of Vincennes, later the Diocese of Indianapolis, and most recently the Diocese of Evansville for more than a century. The seminary lasted less than ten years. The bishop's retirement home did not survive the months of construction. Bishop Hailandiere "was building a fine house for himself called Highland on the road to Petersburg, two miles from Vincennes," according to a January 4, 1848 priest's let- ter. The bishop's plan is described in a booklet published for the 1949 centenni;/f St. Vincent Orphanage. According to the account, Bishop Hailandiere was determined to stay in the area after retiring in 1847, but "this plan did not seem wise" to newly consecrated Bishop John Stephen Bazin. Bishop Hailandiere returned to his native France, where he died in 1882, long after the death of the bishop who did not want him at Vincennes. Bishop Bazin died April 23, 1848. a day short of completing six months of service. He was succeeded by his vicar general, Bishop Maurice de St. Palais. The frame house at Highland was completed in June, 1851, as St. Charles Seminary. In Vincennes, meanwhile, Bishop St. Palais had established orphanages for girls in 1849 and for boys in 1850. In 1860, the bishop closed the seminary and moved the boys from,the orphanage at the old St. Gabriel College in Vincennes to Highland, which he re-named in honor of St. Vincent de Paul. The younger seminarians were sent to St. Thomas Preparatory Seminary, Kentucky; theology students went to live at the bmhop s residence. In ,66, the bishop put local semirary development to an end, and sent his seminarians to study v,ith the Benedictine priest at St. Meinrad. St. Ann's Catholic Orphan Asylum for girls was moved from Vincennes in 1876; o the vacant Providence Hospital in Terre Haute, Ind.. A half century later, after moving to In- dianapolis, the girls' orphanage was returned to Highland. It was in 1862 that construction of a brick orphanage began, to replace the frame house at Highland. Construction took two years, the building was occupied in the sum er of 1864. A newspaper account reported plans, "that the neat chapel attached to the house will be blessed with appropriate ceremonies, on Tuessday, the 26th" of July. Before 1853, priests from the Cathedral at Vincennes were sent to minister to the needs of the orphans and their neighbors at Highland. In 1853, Father John Guegue" was given charge of the seminary at Highland; he remained until 1867. Father Anthony in Deydier, a priest who worked in the Evansville area since 1837, retired to the orphanagO/ 1859; he remained until his death in 1864. See ST. VINCENT DE PAUL peg# 11