The Beginning

One hundred and seven families came together in the “Big Woods” section near Aurora in 1875. With the first spade turn of the rich earth – amid farmlands and oak tree woodlands – our first families founded Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church.

In addition to the beautiful stone church, the parish also established the cemetery in 1875.

Since those humble beginnings and with the leadership of the original Franciscan Fathers and then the Benedictine Monks, the parish has tripled in size. The Lourdes Grotto behind the church was added in 1910 and the cemetery’s Calvary Grotto was added in 1912.

For decades, the church and these beautiful additions have been quiet, prayerful, and holy places for members to pray.