St. Boniface

In 1870, the Catholic people of Ludlow appealed to Bishop Toebbe for permission to erect a church in that community. The cornerstone for Ludlow’s first church was laid in 1871. The new building, a combination church and school, was dedicated in 1872, under the patronage of St. Boniface. The second floor served as a parish church; the lower floor as a school. Not having sufficient priests, Bishop Toebbe was not able to appoint a resident pastor at that time. Accordingly, St. Boniface mission was attended by Franciscan Fathers from Cincinnati. Among the early families of the parish were the names of Schraemeyer, Connersman, Schroeder, Dinkes, Brun, Rolfsen, Ammon, Schaefer, Ramler, Borus, Meade, Leitz and Lemker.

In 1872, Reverend Joseph Frieden was appointed the first resident pastor of St. Boniface Parish. The first baptism recorded in the parish records bears the date of November 17, 1872. 

St. Boniface Parish underwent notable development during the nineteen-year pastorate of Reverend Herman J. Kramer (1884-1903). On September 4, 1890, Father Kramer introduced the Sisters of Divine Providence as teachers in the parish school. Three Sisters, Sister Mary Camille, Sister Mary and Sister Mary Ann, went to Ludlow to take charge of the school. Previous to that time, the school had been taught by laymen, including Frank Grousey, the first teacher, who was succeeded by a Mr. Alberhardy, who in turn had been succeeded by Mrs. Agatha Reardon. On September 8, 1890, the Sisters opened the school with an enrollment of sixty pupils.

The present church was likewise erected by Father Kramer in 1892. The cornerstone was laid by Bishop Maes on August 14, 1892. The following year, on the second Sunday of August, the new Church of St. Boniface was dedicated by the Bishop.

On July 8, 1915, after a terrific cyclone of the preceding night, St. Boniface Church stood in ruins. Catholics of neighboring parishes lent aid to the stricken congregation in an effort to rebuild their church. When repaired, the church was re-dedicated by Bishop Brossart on Sunday, August 13, 1916. The Bishop was met at the corporation line by an escort consisting of Knights of St. John and Knights of Columbus of Ludlow and Covington, and members of St. Boniface Parish. The newly decorated interior of the church showed a marked improvement over the appearance of the former design. In March, 1928, St. Boniface Parish purchased a house and lot in the rear of the church to serve as a parish rectory.

In the summer of 1931, the Sisters’ home was renovated. That same year, Reverend Joseph Broerman began a pastorate at St. Boniface Parish, which extended over the next eighteen years until his resignation on June 21, 1949. His successor, Right Reverend Monsignor Charles A. Towell, the present pastor, was formally installed in July, 1949. St. Boniface Parish today has about two hundred families.


excerpted from Rev. Paul E. Ryan's History of the Diocese of Covington, Kentucky, on the Occasion of the Centenary of the Diocese, 1853-1953