St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission
New Brunswick

E4E 1Z1

Who we are

Serving the Town of Sussex and its surrounding area, the Saint Francis Xavier Church, Sacred heart Parish, Norton and the St. Philip's Mission at the Head of Millstream are the spiritual houses of worship for those who embrace the Roman Catholic faith traditions in the rural area of Kings County - which is geographically located in southern New Brunswick, Canada.

It is our mission to be a welcoming community of believers who follow the Roman Catholic faith traditions. We are focused on demonstrating our faith in Jesus Christ by: Nurturing and celebrating our beliefs through regular worship, study, fellowship and service and by exemplifying our value by being caring people reaching to all God's people.

As part of the Dioceses of Saint John, the spiritual leadership for these church communities is provided through a Pastor and a Pastoral Associate located in Sussex.

Location of worship

St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip\'s Mission
114 Church Avenue
Sussex, NB E4E 1Z1
Phone: 506-432-6686 (Church)
Fax: 506-433-1068
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Church Pastor

Rev. Peter Osborne
Rev. Peter Osborne
114 Church Avenue
Sussex, NB E4E 1Z1
Phone: 506-433-1902
Fax: 506-433-1068
Download Pastor Rev. Peter Osborne vCard   Edit

Quote of the Day
1 John 5:4

For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.





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Leader Name:
Rev. Peter Osborne   Edit
Leader Position:
Pastor   Edit
Formal Title:
Leader Address:
506-433-1068   Edit
Leader Email:
Leader Bio:
Other Church Leaders:
Pastoral Associate: Sandra Hayes   Edit

St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission Leadership Photos


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Admin Address:
506-433-1068   Edit
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Mailing Address


Driving Directions to St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission

A Origin:
B Destination:
114 Church Avenue, Sussex, NB
Mode of Travel:

Travel/Directions Tips

When on Main Street, turn onto Church Avenue. Proceed up Church Avenue past Peter Street. You will see the church ahead on the left.   Edit



St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission Sunday Mass Schedule

Weekly Mass Schedule

Saturday 4:00pm

Sunday: 11:00 am

Mass Times last updated on the 20th of September, 2019   Edit

Worship Languages


Dress Code


Children and Youth Activities

Under 12s:
Under 18s:

A Pocket Catechism for Kids by Fr. Kris Stubna & Mike Aquilina

Parenting Without Regret

Local outreach & community activities


Other activities & ministries


Altar Servers
Eucharistic Ministries
Mass Preparation
Hospitality Ministry   Edit

Special Needs


Prayers and Hymns

Main Bible:
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Additional Info:
Office Hours
Tuesday to Friday: 10:00am to 4:00pm
(closed noon to 1:00pm)   Edit

St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission Photos

History of St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission Sussex NB

“Pride in the Past and Faith in the Future”

A fire at the Rectory in Wards Creek in 1897 destroyed many of the earlier church records. However, it is reckoned that gatherings of the Roman Catholic faith community among the settlers that came to dwell among the ‘hills and valleys’ surrounding Sussex Vale have occurred since the early 1800’s. Long before any church building had been erected in Kings County by the Roman Catholic settlers, travelling missionaries held Masses where a few scattered families could be assembled.

The first Catholic Church in all of Kings County was named St. Stephen’s Church and erected on the location of what is now known as the Lower Norton cemetery. In 1845 recordkeeping was started for the Church in Kings County with a register of baptisms and marriages for Norton, Ward’s Creek, White’s Mountain, Dutch Valley, and Philamaroe.

Key milestones in the evolution of the Parish are:

About 1832, St. Stephen’s church was determined to be the first Catholic Church consecrated in the Kennebecasis Valley. This church was later closed after the Sacred Heart Church at Norton Station was blessed in 1899.

About 1845, Saint Patrick’s church at Philamaroe (25 kilometers east of Sussex) was erected. Sometime after 1905 when many initial settlers had moved away from that settlement, the congregation relocated to Waterford. At the time this document was prepared, Mrs. Bernie Yerxa, the church’s oldest parishioner (at the age of 99) explained that the land in Waterford was donated by her father, Hugh Doherty (Senior) and the church was situated at the foot of the present day Poley Mountain ski hill.

In 1846, through collecting money in Saint John for a ‘building fund’ the first St. Francis Xavier Church at Ward’s Creek was commenced. This church was located near the site of the present day cemetery. The church reminded in Ward’s Creek until the present Saint Francis Xavier Church on Church Avenue in Sussex was blessed in 1900. The rectory in Ward’s Creek burnt in 1897, and along with it, all the earlier church records. The present Rectory on Church Avenue was obtained in 1898.

“In the mid-19th century a church was built along the South Branch Road and was under the care of a Priest from Elgin. At this time there was a church at Lynch Settlement along with another Catholic Church at the fork in the road leading from Hillsdale to Saddleback.” These churches are no longer in existence, although their cemeteries may be found.

In 1888, St. Phillip’s church in Millstream was blessed. The original congregation from Millstream and Dingley Couch previously crossed the mountains to attend St. Michael’s Church at White’s Mountain. It is uncertain when the White’s Mountain church was first erected, but it is believed to be in the mid-1800 when a flourishing settlement existed there.

In 1917, the Church of St. Michael, White’s Mountain was destroyed by fire and a new church was built at Newtown and blessed in 1921.

In 1919, the Mission Church of Our Lady of Ranson, Fredericton Road was transferred to Saint Francis Xavier Parish. In the 1950’s, this Mission was transferred to and included as part of the Dioceses of Moncton.

In 1921, another church, St. Gabriel’s at Anagance Ridge was blessed.

In 1955, a mission was opened in Havelock for a few years.

With the replacement of the ‘horse and carriage’ with automobiles and development of better roads and modern communications, the Mission churches surrounding Sussex gradually closed during the 1950’s. Today, the only Mission church is St. Phillip’s at the Head of Millstream.

Over the years, the decisions to establish so many churches in the area speak to the strong faith, courage, determination, and commitment of the parish’s early founders. The cemeteries attached to many of these churches, hold the remains of many of these early settlers. Many descendants of many of these founders are still parishioners that can proudly trace their heritage back for several generations through family ties to these Mission churches.

One of the longest serving priests was Father James Veriker who was pastor from 1856 – 1886. “His ministry was during the day when the ravages of fever and the epidemics of diphtheria, which periodically struck the countryside, carried away countless numbers of children as well as the elders.” A stained glass window in the present church is dedicated in his name.

Another long servicing pastor was the Rt. Rev. Francis F. Walker, (from 1940 to his death in 1970). During the years Monsignor Walker served this Parish, the first Recreational Hall and Bowling Alleys were built. This property, a few years later, was destroyed by fire. In the debate about whether to rebuild the Hall, Monsignor Walker, who was greatly concerned about the youth of the Parish is reported to have told parishioners that they can discuss it ‘all they want’, but he was determined to rebuild it ‘bigger and better’. The new Hall and Bowling Alley was built in 1950.

In 1975 Saint Francis Xavier Church was refurbished to update the interior in accordance with the vision set forth by the Vatican II. It was necessary to close the church for a period of two months and St. Paul’s United Church congregation graciously offered the use of their church for the weekend Masses. “St. Paul’s United Church greeted us with open arms thus leading to the breaking down of the walls of religious indifference and intolerance toward other churches. A new age was upon us and since that time we have been growing in our respect for other church communities.”

In 1994, the interior of the church was further refurbished with new pews and the ‘Life- sized Cross’ which the main focal point was erected.

Clergy – During the History of Saint Francis Xavier Parish

The following is a list of the pastors, curates and administrators of Saint Francis Xavier Parish, Sussex, NB. Pastors are bolded.
Father O’Donnell is said to have visited the White’s Mountain and Smith Creek area in 1844 and baptized 20 boys and girls at John Fennell’s home.

John Sweeney November 1845 - January 1846
N. Aiphonsus Wallace February 8, 1846 – October 25, 1848
Luke O’Regan November 27, 1848 – June 29, 1850
James Vereker 1856-1886
William Foley 1882-1884 curate
Philip L. Belliveau 1885-1892 curate and later pastor
Patrick Kelly 1887-1891 curate
Edward J. Byrne 1892-1893 curate
James McDevitt 1892-1895
William C. Gaynor 1893-1896 curate
Edward Savage 1896-1905

1900 Second Saint Francis built on Church Avenue
Joseph McDermott 1905-1922
Robert B. Fraser 1919-1921 curate
Wilfred J. Mallette 1921-1923 curate
William P. Hannigan 1922-1939
Joseph P. Ward 1924-1927 curate
J. Emeric Dolan 1927-1930 curate
Frederick C. Carney 1930-1936 curate
Joseph F. Daly 1936-1938 curate
Arthur E. Coughlan 1938-1942 curate
Francis F. Walker 1940-1970
Robert B. Fraser 1942-1951
Lawrence J.
Charles J. Mersereau 1956- curate
John F. Mooney 1956-1963 curate
Raymond Stack 1963-1964 curate
George Riley 1964-1970 curate
John F. Mooney 1970-1973
Joseph P. Quinn 1973-1981
Paul Mitchell 1981-1989
Michael LeBlanc 1989 administrator
Thomas Fowler 1989-1994
William Weiss 1994 administrator
Gerald N. White 1995-1997
Joseph Cochrane 1997-1999
Patrick McDonough 1999 administrator
Peter F. Bagley 1999-2003
Arnie Hachey 2003-2015
Dan Bastarache 2015-present   Edit

St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Phillip's Mission Historical Photos

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The power of Christian prayer "Prayer does not fit us for the greater work; prayer is the greater work."
Oswald Chanbers
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