As part of the Mystical Body of Christ, the Immaculate Conception Church is approximately 600 families strong. We believe love of neighbor is inseparable from love of God. We hope you find this informative and pray it will enrich your knowledge and appreciation of our parish.
The beginning of ICC in Sealy was in 1887, when the first Mass was celebrated in a private home. Then, in 1889, the first cornerstone of our church building was laid. This church was finished in 1890 and served early parishioners for eight years. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by fire in 1898.
Parishioners immediately began to construct another. However, this second church building was not quite finished when the infamous Galveston storm of 1900 destroyed it completely. Undaunted by this catastrophe, the church pioneers once again made plans to build the House of God. It was finished in 1902 and served well for fifty-one years.
In 1956, due to tremendous growth in the parish, once again a new parish church was built. The materials used for the construction of this church were excellent, and the building is harmoniously integrated with the rectory.
Due to the growth of the lay ministry and to foster the spirit of community rooted in our baptismal call and in the documents of the Second Vatican Council, the church building was expanded and remodeled. A section of Ward St. was bought from the city to join the church and the ICC center through a connector.
This new wing provides great versatility to the life of the parish such as a gathering space (foyer), a baptistery, a religious articles center, multi-purpose rooms, etc. This renovation process was completed in 2005.
The new formal entrance of the church is on 4th Street, through a complete handicapped access plaza which highlights a bronze fountain called “Loving Servant”. This work was commissioned to artist Timothy Schmalz from Canada and exemplifies our Christian calling of servanthood. This plaza provides a suitable space to gather for the beginning of the Easter Vigil, for processions, or simply before or after any weekend Mass. On 5th Street, the church now has a covered drop-off entrance ramp, making it convenient in inclement weather.
This gathering space has the Tree of Giving on one of its walls, giving testimony to the generosity of so many parishioners and supporters who have contributed to the renovations project. The west wall has the parish bulletin board and a Christo-Marian medallion representing Mary Queen at the foot of the Cross. The Religious Articles Center and multi-purpose room (Scripture & Tradition rooms) are accessible from the foyer. There is also a TV monitor in this area which allows for overflow attendance. The crucifix and the statues of the Sacred Heart and St. Joseph were in the main body of the church before renovations.
This foyer is connected to the south entrance of the church through a leadership hallway. In it, you can see the pictures of prominent people in our Catholic community such as pastors, deacons and current law leaders.
In several areas, such as the door window panels, the wood floor in the foyer and the mural over the Tabernacle, are symbols that have been associated traditionally with Mary’s iconography. We recall Revelation 12:1, “…and on her head a crown of twelve stars.”
This is the main entrance of the remodeled worship space. Its focal point is the new octagonal baptismal font which allows for baptisms by immersion. According to the General Introduction of Christian Initiation, #22, this form of baptism is “more suitable as a symbol of participation in the death and resurrection of Christ.” Its mural on the ceiling is a representation of God the Father sending down the Holy Spirit on the person being baptized. It evokes the biblical passage from Matthew 3:16-17 about the baptism of Jesus. The inscription “Behold the Lamb” from the Gospel of John 1:29 is the testimony of John the Baptist witnessing to the presence of the Messiah whom he had baptized.
Also, the Baptistery has the ambry with the Holy Oils, the niche for the Book of the Gospels and the adjacent Reconciliation Room, Vesting Sacristy and Angels Room (Cry Room).
The Main Body of the Church
In addition to all the stained glass windows in existence, there is a new stained glass window of the Resurrection of Christ where the previous main entrance of the church used to be. Two of the old stained glass windows were relocated in the foyer: Christ the Good Shepherd and St. Anne with the Virgin Mary.
The ceiling has been complimented by decorative beams. A mural medallion of the Lamb of God ornaments the arch wall above the altar, and three small devotional chapels enhance the worship space: one dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe, one to Saint Teresa of Calcutta with a first class relic of hers (Ex capillis – from her hair), and another dedicated to the Divine Mercy. The pedestals of the first two statues were made with marble from the former side altars.
The organ speakers are now encased in their own acoustic chambers on each side of the round stained window of the Last Supper. The Stations of the Cross, all the stained glass windows, the statuary, the graint floor, as well as the pews, have been beautifully refurbished. All the walls of the church have been covered with sheetrock to assure better sound and painting quality. The church is now more energy efficient as insulation material was installed between the ceiling and the roof.
It includes two new religious art pieces from Italy: the mosaic of St. Joseph and a wooden crucifix ornate with mosaics. Our precious and original mosaic of the Immaculate Conception, once in the center, is now on one side of the cross.
The altar of sacrifice has been modified to also represent a table, beautiful to behold from any angle. The marble on the back of the altar was taken from one of the side altars. The tabernacle pedestal and the ambo have been made primarily with marble from the side altars and from the old communion rail doors with their pelican (Eucharistic) symbols.
The mural over the Tabernacle is a representation of Revelation 5:12 in which the angels in Heaven are praising the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, as they proclaim “Dignus est Angus”, the Latin translation of “Worthy is the Lamb”. As the angels hold a banner with this inscription, they form a window to Heaven in which a bright star can be seen dimly.
The Chapel and Working Sacristy
These have basically remained the same except for the carpet. The chapel is now only accessible from the outside from the north parking lot. We are blessed for having renovated our church to today’s modern standards while keeping its sacred nature in an elegant and reverent way. We also feel blessed that we were able to find the right color brick for the new building so as to match, almost to perfection, the already existing brick walls of the church, rectory and CCE buildings. The end result is a parish complex that is aesthetically beautiful and functional as well.
We are most thankful to all the members of our church who joined in this vision and who supported it wholeheartedly. Hopefully, it will serve as a witness, for many generations to come, of the love we have for God and for each other.
The History of Our Pastors
Since Immaculate Conception Parish was formed in 1889, there have been fifteen (15) servants of Christ to serve the parish as priests.
Rev, William K. Skocek 1902-1907; 1908-1912
Rev. Frances Machas 1907-1908
Rev. Paul Nemec 1912-1915
Rev. Joseph Hanak 1915-1931
Rev. Charles J. Kunc 1931-1935
Rev. James Kveton 1935-1949
Rev. A.J. Crann 1949-1953
Rev. Ben Holub 1953-1966
Rev. James Quilter 1966-1971
Rev. Aleck Lazek 1971-1980
Rev. Paul McCallum 1980-1989
Msgr. Boleslaus Zientek 1989-1997
Rev. Joseph Limanni 1997-2000
Rev. Octavio Muguerza 2000-2007
Rev. Eric Pitre 2007-2020
Rev. Jonathan Moré 2020-Present
During the formation of ICC in Sealy, there were 2 native priests ordained to the priesthood, Rev. Ben Kaminski in 1928 and Rev. Leon Streider in 1976. Native sisters include Sr. Dorothy Susil, Srs. Marietta & Carol Hajdik, Sr. Faustina Orsak, and Sr. Margeta Krchnak. The parish is also blessed to have ordained three permanent deacons: Dcn. Frank Laredo, Dcn. Jerome Losack, and Dcn. Robert Kent.