Because they don’t leave behind children and grandchildren, priests are often forgotten over the years. I think this is sad since they played such a huge part in their parishioners’ lives, baptizing babies, uniting couples in marriage and burying the dead.
Here, cobbled together from newspaper articles, is a list of the early priests of Terrebonne Parish:
SACRED HEART – MONTEGUT
Jean Marie Joseph Denece arrived in 1863 from France aboard the St. Genevieve. He was among 51 priests and seminarians recruited by the archbishop of New Orleans. Father Denece traveled his parish by horseback and pirogue for 26 years. He died in 1890.
J. M. Evano became the church’s first pastor in 1911. He established St. Louis Chapel for the residents of Bayou Blue.
In 1958, George Herbert was appointed by the archbishop to create a parish in the Broadmoor section of Houma. Mass was said for the first time in Broadmoor School. Father Hebert moved into a small house on Collins Street while work began on an actual church. Initially, the parish served 43 families.
Father Perreau was the first pastor when the church became a separate parish in 1858. Sadly, Father Perreau quickly died after falling from his horse while out visiting a sick parishioner. His successor was C. Urcun.
The first priest was Adrian van der Brook (Broek?), who served from 1908 to 1922. Poor health caused him to return to Holland.