Mount Hood Corridor: St. Michael, St. John, and St. Aloysius

Our Parish for the Week of March 3:

St. Michael’s (Sandy), St. John (Welches), and St. Aloysius (Estacada)


St. Michael’s in Sandy


This week we are heading over towards Mount Hood to St. Michael Catholic Church in Sandy and its’ missions of St. John in Welches and St. Aloysius in Estacada. While three unique parishes and communities, they are united as a bigger parish community under the leadership of Fr. Gregg Bronsema.



  • During Lent, all three parishes are holding Stations of the Cross on Fridays, with Stations at St. Michael’s in both English and Spanish.
  • These parishes are busy with activities such as Prayer Shawl Ministry, Senior Group Outings, Rosary Makers, Homebound Ministry, Prayer Chain, St. Vincent de Paul distribution, and various classes for Faith Formation and Sacramental Prep.
  • Last summer, St. Michael’s and Fr. Gregg made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and documented the trip extensively on their Facebook and Youtube channels.


Holy Land Pilgrimage


  • St. Aloysius is celebrating their 100 year anniversary in July! They are working to put together a history book and other celebration plans later this year. Come by on St. Patrick’s day for their Potluck and Bingo!
  • St. John’s gets many visitors because of its proximity to Mt. Hood!
  • St. Michael suffered quite a bit of damage to their parish hall from the January storm and are working to repair it.
  • The parishes have a rich history that dates back to the pioneers in 1878.
  • Fr. Bronsema is working on a concert to be held at St. Michaels this summer.


St John in Welches

Parish Liturgies:

  • Mass Times:
    • Saturday: 5:00 pm at St. Michael
    • Sunday:
      • 8:00 am at St. John
      • 10:00 am at St. Michael
      • 11:30 am at St. Aloysius
      • 1:30 pm Spanish at St. Michael
    • Mon Tue Thu: 8:30 am at St. Michael
    • Wednesday: 11:00 am at St. Aloysius
    • 1st Saturday: 8:30 am Healing Mass at St. Michael
  • Adoration:
    • Thursdays at St. Michael most of the day (9 am – 5 pm)
    • Al’s Wednesdays morning, St. John 3rd Wednesday afternoons
  • Confessions: Saturday 3:30 – 4:30 pm
  • 1st Saturday Rosary at 8:00 am at St. Michael Church
  • Contemplative prayer 2nd and 4th Saturday’s at St. John


St. Aloysius in Estacada


History of the Parish:

  • Parishioners have a history that dates back to the pioneers of the Northwest territory.
  • From the pages of “A Chronicle of Catholic History of the Pacific Northwest,” a notation from 1878 reads: “Fr. Louis Verhaag offered the first Mass in Sandy, Oregon, in the residence of Paul Dunn. His congregation numbered fifty persons, one fourth of whom were Catholics and most of whom had never seen a priest before. Subsequently priests from East Portland continued to visit Sandy. In June, 1886, Mr. Meinig donated an acre of land and a frame church was planned. It was erected until 1898.”
  • Some of the first Roman Catholic services were held at in a log school house around 1890 as well as several other local homes.
  • In 1894 and 1908 land for St. Michael’s Church was purchased on Main Street in Sandy across from the present-day post office building.
  • In 1898 a small church forty-six by twenty-six feet was built by Fr. Anselm Wachter, OSB, and dedicated by Fr. J.J. O’Riordan, administrator of the Diocese, under the title and patronage of St. Michael.
  • From the pastoral residence of Sacred Heart in Portland, Fr. Anselm has charge of the missions of Milwaukie, Kronenberg, Sandy, Estacada and Troutdale for 13 years, often making the rounds on foot. Fr. Anselm died in 1907.
  • After the first church was destroyed by a fire in 1917, a new St. Michael’s church was built by a local carpenter in its current local. For a time this parish was served by the Benedictine priests from Mount Angel Abbey.
  • Among the donations for the stained glass windows in St. Michaels, Helen Milan, one of the young people of the parish, spent first pay check of $35.00 purchasing and donating the three stained glass windows bearing her name in the choir loft of the present church.
  • The Church of St. Aloysius located at Estacada, Oregon was blessed on July 13, 1924 by Archbishop Christie. Since 1933 Sandy was attached to the parish at Estacada, which later became its’ mission.
  • In 1937 the Church of St. John the Evangelist, a rustic, peeled-log chapel for the use of vacationists in Rhododendron area, was dedicated by Archbishop Howard.

Find out more through their website!