Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish held a special Mass and reception on Dec. 31 in celebration of its 89th anniversary.

The Rev. Miles Walsh, pastor of Sacred Heart, celebrated Mass with the assistance of Deacon David Dawson. Following Mass, a reception featuring gumbo, potato salad and various desserts was held in the Parish Hall.

Among the special guests in attendance were the descendants of Monsignor Dominic Blasco, the first pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, including two of his three nieces, Marti Blasco Didier and Mary Blasco Nola. Another special guest was Sam Moran, the first baby baptized in the new parish on Dec. 25, 1928.

The parish was established Dec. 23, 1928, with Blasco as pastor from 1928 until his untimely death in 1948. During his tenure, Sacred Heart built the school in 1929 and the church in 1942.

Sacred Heart has undergone a number of renovations and improvements to the church and school in the last few years, with more to come. The church has received extensive renovations in the last three years, including the former CYO Center that is now the Parish Activity Center & Gymnasium. Other campus improvements include a courtyard dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and a new outdoor dining and classroom area at the school.

Future improvements include a renovation to the parish’s historic ball field that includes new lights, dugouts, bleachers, irrigation system, infield sod, netting, storage facility and improvements to the concession stand and restrooms. Extensive drainage and parking lot renovations will begin in February.