The Franciscans

Sacred Heart parish was founded in September 1916.  The Franciscan Fathers were given responsibility for the area that now comprises Saddle Brook, Maywood and Rochelle Park. Father Maurice Vollmer O.F.M. was the first pastor. The first Mass was celebrated in the home of Leo K Smith in Rochelle Park on September 17, 1916.

A church was built and completed on October 7, 1917. In 1936 construction was begun on the school building which was staffed by the Sisters of Charity of Convent Station. In 1938 the Church building was enlarged to accommodate a growing congregation.

A New Church

A new church was built and dedicated on May 9, 1959. There were many Franciscan Fathers who devotedly served the people of Sacred Heart from 1916 until 1990.   In 1990, the Archdiocese of Newark assumed the responsibility of staffing the parish and appointed Rev. Lewis Papera as the pastor.   

Enter Father William O'Brien, 1997

Fr. Bill was ordained on May 27,1961 and has served in various assignments in the Archdiocese of Newark for the last 42 years.
Archbishop McCarrick assigned Fr. Bill to Sacred Heart in June of 1997. 
His various other assignments have been:

Year 2001:    Father Lew is assigned to Hasbrouck Heights Parish Corpus Christi after serving Sacred Heart for 12 years.

Pastor Father Norbert Laskowski Arrives in August, 2001

Father Norbert F. Laskowski transferred from St. Cecilia in Kearney, NJ, to succeed Father Lewis V. Papera.     He was named administrator of Sacred Heart Parish, Rochelle Park, in August 2001 and pastor in November, 2001.    May 26, 2004 marked Father Norbert's 25th Anniversary of his ordination.

Fr. Norbert was born in Newark, NJ on August 21, 1941, the eldest son of Edward and Leah. He attended schools in Newark, graduated from Mc Allister School of Mortuary Science in 1961, and Seton Hall University. He retains his Morticians License. 

Fr. Norbert attended Immaculate Conception Seminary and was ordained on May 26, 1979.   As an active third degree Knight of Columbus,  he served  10 years as a Judge at the Metropolitan Tribunal.    After ordination, he was assigned to Immaculate Conception Parish, Secaucus.   Father Laskowski was named parochial vicar at Queen of Peace Parish, North Arlington, in 1982.   In June 1993, he was appointed parochial vicar at Holy Spirit Parish, Union. 

He became pastor of St Cecilia Parish, Kearney, NJ in 1996 and was appointed dean of the West Hudson Deanery 14. 
Fr. Norbert celebrated numerous Masses of Healing especially involving his devotion to Our Lady of Medjugorje.

Father William O'Brien retires,  May, 2006


Deacon Joseph Montineo  is assigned to Sacred Heart by Archbishop  John J. Myers,   January, 2007.


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