Holy Family Catholic Parish - Marion County, Kansas

St. John Nepomucene, Pilsen

Catholic Bohemian pioneers built the first frame church of St John Nepomucene in 1888, later used as a convent for the Sisters Adorers of the Blood of Christ.  These nuns came to Pilsen in 1913, and finally built a new convent in 1950.  A red brick church was completed in 1915, followed by a brick rectory in 1924.  The interior of the church was renovated and a handicapped ramp was added in 2002.  A celebrity from the parish was Msgr. Arthur Tonne, who achieved international fame as an author with his “Jokes for Priests” series of books and his book about Father Kapaun.  Fr. Emil Kapaun was ordained on June 9, 1940, the first son of the parish to be ordained.  Destined to become an international hero, he died a martyr’s death in a Korean prisoner-of-war camp in 1951.  Before he left for the service, Fr. Kapaun served his native parish as administrator in 1943.  He was declared a Servant of God in 1993, and his cause for canonization was opened in July 2008.