The first Catholic church in Colo, St. Mary's, was built in 1881 under the direction of Rev. Patrick Smith of Boone. It was a small, wooden frame building which was built on the northeast corner of Block 18, Lot 1, Blairs Addition, which is now the corner of Fourth and Bailey streets. The cost of the church was $1,100.
In late 1910 members of St. Mary's began thinking of building a new church at a cost of $15,000, but those plans never materialized. Instead, the little church was moved across the street so the brick school house could be erected on the former church property in 1915.
The Altar and Rosary Society of St. Mary's was organized February 11, 1925. Members of the Society, as well as men of the parish, worked very hard to make and save money for the building of a new church. Those were the years of the Great Depression, and money didn't come easily! At last, on April 1, 1938, work began on a beautiful new brick church which was dedicated by Archbishop Beckman in November 1938.
The Martin McCoy residence on Fourth Street was purchased to be used as a rectory in 1957. Plans were soon underway for construction of a new rectory, which was dedicated by Archbishop Binz in 1960.
The names of those from St. Mary's Parish who were ordained to the priesthood
and those who entered the religious life are as follows:
On November 20, 1988, St. Mary's celebrated 50 years in the present church building. At that time, a special book outlining the history of the church and the parish was printed; a picture directory of parishioners was printed also. Commemorative mugs were sold as souvenirs. Mass and a dinner brought present and past parishioners together.
At the present time, plans are underway to make St. Mary's Church handicapped
accessible to the first floor, as well as to the basement.