A Brief History of Christ the King Parish
In February 1954 Father Goes broke the ground upon which Christ the King Parish is built. With him were Parish Council members Frank Gentner, Joe McCarthy, and Virg Grosjean; Leo Haas, electrical contractor; and Fred Entenman and Tom Witherell from the Entenman Construction Company.
In the years after the First World War, the population and boundaries of the city of Toledo grew, especially to the west of the urban center and especially after the Second World War. In 1910, before World War I, Toledo’s population was 168,497; by 1950, it had grown to 303,616. From what had been St. Agnes Parish in the “new” West End, six additional parishes were carved: Blessed Sacrament Parish in 1924, St. Catherine of Siena in 1930, St. Clement in 1946, St. Pius X and Christ the King in 1953, and Regina Coeli in 1954.
As early as 1950, Bishop George J. Rehring was soliciting advice about erecting two new parishes from the western parts of Blessed Sacrament. A proposal was tabled on July 17 of that year for an “Indian Road Parish” to serve Ottawa Hills and Indian Hills and for a “New Monroe Street Parish” to serve the area that did in fact become Christ the King Parish.
In August 1951, Bishop Rehring negotiated to buy part of a 17.8-acre property between Monroe Street and Sylvania Avenue, bounded to the west by a line that eventually became an extension of Harvest Lane. On October 25, 1951, the diocese bought 12 acres of the property, which had previously belonged to the Washington Township Board of Education, from Philip and Nellie Willis for a total of $75,000, part of which was paid in installments over four years.
The bishop’s next order of business was to appoint a priest to organize the proposed “Monroe Street Parish.” In November 1952, he appointed Father Basil F. Goes as assistant pastor at Blessed Sacrament Parish with the task of organizing a parish to be called Christ the King. On May 15, 1953, Bishop Rehring formally established “the Parish of Our Lord, Christ the King” according to canon law. On May 18 he determined that the parish’s buildings would be located on the 12-acre “triangle” of land the diocese had purchased in 1951.
At the time of the parish’s inception, Pope Pius XII was Bishop of Rome, Father Goes counted 230 families as his parishioners, and the parish’s boundaries were identical to those today—except that the parish limits stopped at Talmadge Road to the west. Specifically, the lines began at the corner of Laskey and Talmadge, continued east on Laskey to Garrison Road (or at least what planners thought would be Garrison Road), head south on Garrison to Monroe Street, west on Monroe to Secor Road, then south on Secor Road to Central Avenue, then west on Central to Talmadge, and north on Talmadge back to Laskey.
The new parish was carved entirely from the western part of Blessed Sacrament Parish, but at the very same time that Christ the King Parish was established, Bishop Rehring erected another parish (mostly from the southern part of Blessed Sacrament with a small section taken from Gesu Parish). This second parish was named for Blessed Pius X, who had been beatified in 1950; when Pius X was canonized in 1954, the parish became St. Pius X.