Our Lady of Tears Catholic Church (Silver City Idaho)


Silver City, Idaho

Our Lady of Tears
A line drawing by Barbara Hamilton
Idaho Catholic Register

Idaho, with mountains of precious metals and minerals, is filled with old mining towns. Among these are the ghost towns. The Queen of them all, without question, is Silver City. Sitting high in the Owyhee Mountains, Silver City is in the southwest corner of Idaho, not far from the Oregon boarder.

The history of the church in Silver City goes back to the days of the Idaho Territory. The church, originally named St. Andrew's, was dedicated on December 18, 1868. That building was sold in 1873 and no Catholic church existed in Silver City until 1882. On November 5, 1882, St. Andrew's was rededicated under the title of Our Lady of Sorrows with a new church building on Jordan Street. During the years between 1900 and 1925, mining in the area dwindled and Silver City gradually declined. St. Andrew's fell into disrepair and was abandoned.


The current church building was donated in 1928 to the Catholic Diocese by the Episcopalians. The Episcopal Diocese had been approached by some Nampa businessmen who wished to buy their church building (St. James Episcopal Church) and convert it into a roadhouse. To spare the church this fate, Episcopal Bishop Barnwell offered it to Bishop Edward J. Kelly of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Boise. The church was rededicated as Our Lady of Tears Catholic Church.

The beautiful church that stands today and overlooks the picturesque Silver City serves as a reminder of the faith of the pioneers and is an inspiration to residents and visitors alike.

Our Lady of Tears is a landmark building in Silver City and is undergoing a ten year preservation effort. The latest and most impressive is the installation of three new stained glass windows behind the alter, made in the style and colors of the original windows. This year (2000), the  principle project is the construction of two new front doors.


Silver City Mass Celebrations


The scheduled masses for 2013 are:

Sunday, May 26th at 1:00 p.m.

Sunday, July 21st at 1:00 p.m.

Sunday, August 11th at 12:00 noon

Sunday, September 1st at 1:00 p.m.

A potluck dinner will follow each Mass in the home of Dave Wilpher. All are invited.

For more information contact:
St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Nampa
via phone: 466-7031
or via email: father@cableone.net 

Copyright 2008, St. Paul's Catholic Church. All Rights Reserved.
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