St. Francis of Assisi Church, 1960 Bardstown Road, will host a Golden Jubilee Celebration in honor of the ordination of Father Joseph T. Merkt at the 10 a.m. Mass on May 7.
A light reception will follow the Mass in the parish hall. Father Merkt attended St. Francis of Assisi School and now resides in the church rectory.
Father Merkt was ordained in Rome during the Second Vatican Council and has primarily ministered in education in the Archdiocese of Louisville.
He taught religion at Trinity High School from 1967-1971; coordinated Catholic school religion and prevention programming for the Office of Catholic Schools from 1976-1991; and directed the undergraduate and graduate ministry studies programs at Spalding University from 1991-2001. He also simultaneously directed the ministry program at Brescia University in the Diocese of Owensboro from 2001-2004.
During his work in education, he served at St. Martin of Tours, St. Helen, and St. Bernard churches as a priest in residence and presided at the 11 a.m. daily Mass for the Ursuline Sisters of Louisville receiving nursing care. Father Merkt also contributed to national lay ministry organizations.
Father Merkt does not want any personal gifts but if a person would like to donate in his honor they can give to either Spalding University’s Revered Joseph T. Merkt Endowment Fund or to the St. Francis of Assisi Peru Fund. All are welcome to join the celebration at St. Francis of Assisi.