In 1995 St. Michael the Archangel Catholic Church was founded as a mission of St. Catherine of Siena, located in Kennesaw, Georgia. The mission began with the first Mass being celebrated in August with over three hundred families in attentance. The mission met in the Cherokee County Recreation Center located on Main Stree in Woodstock.
In January of 1996, St. Michael's purchased a house on Jay Lane. The house was turned into a rectory for the priest and the basement was converted into offices for Administration and Religious Education. There was a seperate garage on the property which the Knights of Columbus converted into a Day Chapel. In March of 1996, thirty acres were purchased on Arnold Mill Road to provid ample space for the future. Because of the growth in the number of families at St. Michael's, the Archbishop changed the status from a mission to a parish in June of 1996 and appointed the church's first Pastor.
As the parish and staff continued to grow, the house on Jay Lane became too cramped. In January of 1997 five more acres and a house adjoining the property on Arnold Mill was purchased and the house on Jay Lane was sold. After completely renovating the house, with help from many parishioners, the pastor and office staff moved into their new home in April. The Knights of Columbus again renovated the garage and turned it into a Day Chapel. The storage shed on the property was also renovated and turned into a work space for Religious Education and meeting room. This shed would later become the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry.
During a building campaign, the parish raised over $2,100,000 to build St. Michael's first church. A loan of $4,200,000 from the Archdiocese was obtained and on February 28, 1998, Archbishop John F. Donoghue and Pastor Patrick Kingery dug the first shovels full of dirt at the ground breaking ceremony. Construction of the new church was completed in mid January 1999 and the first Mass was held on January 22, 1999 at the 5:30 pm Vigil Mass. In June, 2012, the mortgage on the church and property was paid off.
In 2005 a new rectory was donated and constructed on the property for the priest's residence. The Old Rectory is now St. Michael's Food Pantry, open three mornings a week, and now serves over 120 families a week in the community.
As Cherokee continue to grow, so did St. Michael's. With 7 masses on the weekend, the current church was filled to capacity. Another building campaign was begun and the new church was designed. Through the generosity of the parishioners, the groundbreaking for the new church was held in March, 2014, by Archbishop Wilton Daniel Gregory. On May 19th, the first bulldozers arrived and construction began.
On July 10th, 2015, the first mass was held in the new church. The first mass was a funeral for a parishioner who had been at St. Michaels since the first mass in 1995. That weekend, all masses were celebrated in the new church.
After completion of the church, renovation began on the old church and surrounding areas. After the jack hammering ceased and the dust settled, the old church was converted into a new Family Center and a new Commercial kitchen built to open into the Family Center. The Chapel was renovated and new conference rooms and classrooms were converted on the second floor.
On August 29th, Archbiship Gregory dedicated the new Church.
What does the future hold for St. Michael's? More growth, both spiritually and in numbers. With growth comes more building and renovation to serve God's people!!
The bulldozers will be arriving again next spring as construction of an additional parking lot is added behind the Parish Hall and playground!