Like so many churches in small towns, St. Rose Church in St. Rose, Illinois, is reflective of the town’s earliest inhabitants. Coming from Baden, Germany, and Switzerland between 1844 and 1850, the immigrants initially joined a parish in Breese. But in 1867, with 25 Catholic families in the town’s vicinity, they decided to begin their own parish, and St. Rose Church was established.
Building the church itself was a labor of love, with parishioners gathering necessary building materials: bricks from Breese and Aviston, stones from a local quarry, and lumber from surrounding lands. The construction of the church—which is a simple red brick structure with a tall spire—was a slow process, requiring donations from parishioners along the way and taking years to complete, for a total cost of about $10,000.
In 1881, the parish opened a school next door that was, and still is staffed by the Precious Blood sisters.
St. Rose Church also has a cemetery that is one of the most unique in all of Illinois. Unlike most cemeteries where bodies are buried in side-by-side family plots, St. Rose Cemetery is organized by date of death. So a husband and wife and their children could be scattered throughout the graveyard. The cemetery is also striking in that all its tombstones are the same height, about waist-high, and white, topped with a carved-out cross. Small oval photos of the deceased are a recent addition to many of the gravestones. While the rules of the cemetery may have some detractors, the uniformity certainly does make everyone from all walks of life equal in death.
St. Rose Church
18010 St. Rose Road, St. Rose, IL
Like its churches, Clinton County is all about sticking together as a community, which makes for a great life. We invite you to come experience it!