Deb Wagner
Freelance Writer
February 14, 2017 // Parish

IMD: St. Aloysius and St. Therese Parishes in the spotlight

Deb Wagner
Freelance Writer

Click here for St. Therese Parish

St. Aloysius Parish is known as home to many generations

St. Aloysius Parish in Yoder has been a pillar of the small, rural community for the nearly 160 years. In 1858 Bishop John Henry Luers, the first bishop of the Diocese of Fort Wayne, assigned a priest to help the Catholic families of the area commonly known as Pleasant Township. Three acres of land were donated for the plot where the church was built in 1859. Seventeen years after the church was erected Father Ferdinand Koerdt established the school, which opened Oct. 17, 1876, with 38 pupils. Last year marked 140 years of continuous Catholic education in the current school building, which was completed in 1956 with only four classrooms. Additional classrooms and a gym were added in 2001.

Students at St. Aloysius School in Yoder dressed up as their favorite saints for the Fort Wayne-area All Schools Mass last fall.

On the south side of the parish grounds there is a small, old cemetery of about 600 graves. Eight priests are among those buried there. Four of them, all former pastors of St. Aloysius Parish, are located around the large cross in the center of the cemetery. Father Koerdt, the first resident pastor, is also buried in the cemetery, as well as approximately 50 veterans of the U.S. military.

Many priests and sisters have served the parish over the years. The parish and school have provided a nurturing environment that led 11 young men to join the priesthood and 10 young women to join the religious life. One such individual was quoted in the parish’s 150th Anniversary book as saying, “We are all better off, being closer to our Divine Lord, more aware of our faith, better prepared to help others because of our association with St. Aloysius Parish.”

In the rural community of Yoder, located just south of Fort Wayne, lies the thriving parish of St. Aloysius.

In more recent times, the mission “to know Christ, meet Him in the sacraments, and evangelize through acts of love, and works of mercy” remains the same at St. Aloysius.

Currently, the parish is comprised of approximately 215 families. There are 108 students in grades prekindergarten through eighth grade currently enrolled in the school, whose small class sizes provide great learning possibilities. Many of the St. Aloysius students give back to their parish community by serving at Mass and participating in various sports activities. Some of them are also members of other organizations such as Lego Club, Girl Scouts and ACE, which stands for Aerospace Connections in Education. The Sunday School of Religion provides children who do not attend the parish school with teachings about their Catholic faith. For the adults of the parish, St. Aloysius has one of the most active Knights of Columbus councils in the diocese. There is also a Rosary Sodality and a Pro-Life committee for those who wish to become involved.

Msgr. Bruce J. Piechocki was assigned St. Aloysius as pastor seven months ago, in June. When asked about his parish, he remarked, “I have found the people here to be very warm and welcoming, not only towards myself and others as well. I have been most impressed with the parishioners’ willingness to share of their time and talent. They regard the parish not just as the place where they come to Mass or send their children to school; it’s part of their family and has been for many generations.”

St. Aloysius
14623 Bluffton Rd.
Yoder, IN 46798-9741


Mass Times:

Sunday: 7, 9, 11 a.m.

Weekday: 8:30 a.m. Tue.-Sat.

Saturday: 8:30 a.m.; 5:30 p.m.



Saturday 4-5 p.m.
and by appointment


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