Created 11-Feb-13
17 photos

One of the landmarks in this small town on the north shore of Maui is the Gothic style Holy Rosary Church. With its magnificent stained glass windows and the impressive memorial to Father Damien, it attracts visitors from far and wide. But, it is also home to an active worshiping congregation.

The Church bell bears the inscription of the Meneely Bell Co., Troy, NY, founded in 1826, producing 65,000 bells up through 1952. It is on display in the courtyard in back of the main church building.

The town of Paia grew up around the old sugar mills, and today is known as the "Wind Surfing Capital of the World," and is a major tourist destination being the last town at the start of the fabled Hana Highway.

A bit of history by Bill Tavares in the Hawaii Catholic Herald:

"The original Holy Rosary Church was built in 1886 in Kuau by Sacred Hearts Father James Beissel on 15 acres donated to the church by a devout Hawaiian named Keakome, according to Sacred Hearts Father Robert Schoofs in his book “Pioneers of the Faith.”

The Kuau church had a seating capacity of 350 people. Along with Makawao, Kuau was one of the main Catholic centers on Maui. With the completion of the Paia Plantation mill in 1905 and the establishment of several large labor camps in upper Paia it became necessary to move the church.

In 1926, Sacred Hearts Father Jules Verhaeghe started construction of the present church which was blessed in February of 1927 by Bishop Stephen Alencastre.

The majestic Gothic style structure has been a much loved center of worship for thousands of parishioners and visitors over the past 85 years. Among its attractions are priceless stained glass windows crafted in Belgium by the famed artisan M. Barry. The windows are among the most beautiful in Hawaii.

Another unique feature are the Stations of the Cross, carved of wood by Brothers of the Sacred Hearts Sylvester Bathe and Wenceslaus Van Vorst.

In 1976, under the direction of Sacred Hearts Father Roland Peters, the parish constructed an outdoor St. Damien memorial featuring a marble statue carved in Italy of the famed priest of the leprosy settlement of Kalaupapa supporting a stricken Hawaiian."
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Categories & Keywords
Category:Architecture and Structures
Subcategory:Churches
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords:Holy Rosary Church