Mary Queen Catholic Church is served by the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, a Religious Order dedicated to making known the message of Our Lady of La Salette. Click here to learn more about their Religious Order.
The La Salette Missionaries, from the Mary Queen Province, St. Louis, Missouri, originally owned the 20 acres of land in the heart of Friendswood; land dotted with Texas cedar and pecan trees and in the heart of a small Quaker-established community between Houston and Galveston. The Missionaries had intended to build a seminary here, but changed their plans. In 1965, a group of over 55 Catholic families and households from Friendswood sought permission from the Bishop of Galveston-Houston, Bishop John Morkovsky, to establish the beginnings of a Catholic church in this growing community. The fact that this area, just outside of Houston, had been selected for the new Johnson Space Center and NASA Control was a major factor in its rapid growth.
The Bishop asked the La Salette Missionaries to serve this new Mission Chapel from the parish of St. Peter the Apostle, located in Houston. Fr. Edwin Egan, Fr. Thomas McNamara, Fr. Clarence Wheeler and Fr. John Zabelskas were some of the first priests to serve in early ministry and lay the foundation for a new Mission Chapel within the jurisdiction of the Midwest La Salette Province. The parish inherited the name Mary Queen from the name of this Province. A small wood-framed house on the premises was renovated to serve as a temporary church. In June of 1966 the frame structure was officially designated as a mission church. On January 21, 1969, Bishop Morkovsky issued a Decree of Erection, elevating Mary Queen from mission to parish status. The La Salette priests and brothers have continued to serve the parish from its origin.
Mary Queen Catholic Church is part of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. The current hierarchy consists of His Eminence, Archbishop Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop George A. Sheltz, along with Archbishop Emeritus Joseph A. Fiorenza, D.D., and retired Auxiliary Bishop Vincent M. Rizzotto, D.D. There are three Catholic retreat centers, a major seminary, as well as more than 150 parishes within the Archdiocese. In Friendswood, Mary Queen parish now hosts two La Salette Missionaries, both in full time parish ministry: Rev. James H. Kuczynski, M.S., Pastor, and Rev. Benny Joseph Thadathilkunnel, M.S. from the Province of India. During the year, many “La Salettes” assist and serve the local parish in seasonal liturgies and ministry.