St. Joan of Arc History



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Before 1927                Victorville was a mission.  Priests from Barstow and

                                    San Bernardino came to celebrate Mass on Sundays

                                    In a private home. Rev. Charles Kerf, Pastor at

                                     St. Joseph, Barstow, attempted to build a church in

                                     Victorville in 1922 with the help of Mr. Leonardt

                                     From the local cement plant.  The project never got started.


1927                            St. Joan of Arc becomes a full parish. Rev. P.J. Barry

                                    is the first pastor.  First church is built at 6th and

                                    “A” streets.It is part of the Diocese of Los Angeles-

                                    San Diego.  Boundaries included Lucerne Valley,

                                    Apple Valley, Hesperia and Victorville.


1936                            St. Joan of Arc Parish becomes part of the Diocese

                                    Of San Diego.


1950                            Second church is built at same location as the

                                    first church. 


1951                            Rev. William Van Garsse begins his 20 year pastorate.

                                    There were 173 Catholic families in the Victor Valley area.


1953                            St. Mary School and Convent is built in Apple Valley.

                                    School opens with 87 children, 3 lay teachers and

                                    Rev. Van Garsse as a teacher,


1954                            Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Los Angeles come to

                                    staff the school.  During the next ten years, four additional

                                    classrooms are added, convent enlarged, an auditorium and

                                    library added along with an office for the principal and a staff



1956                            St. Mary Hospital is opened next to St. Mary School.  Staffed by the

                                    Brothers of St. John of God.


1963                            The church is enlarged with a Mother’s chapel.  A new

                                    rectory is built.




1974                            St. David Parish opens in Apple Valley, next to the hospital

                                    and school. Later named Our Lady of the Desert Parish.


1978                            St. Joan of Arc becomes part of the Diocese of San Bernardino.


1992                            Holy Innocents Parish opens on the west side of Victorville.




Pastor List for St. Joan of Arc Parish


            1922-1927       Mission of St. Joseph, Barstow

            1927-1929       Rev. P.J. Beary

            1929-1931       Rev. P.J. Murphy

            1932-1935       Rev. J. P. Callighan

            1935-1940       Rev. John McDonagh

            1940-1941       Rev. Thomas Early

            1941-1951       Rev. William Casey

            1951-1971       Msgr. William Van Garsse

            1971-1973       Rev. Russell Wilson

            1973-1981       Rev. James Ganahl

            1981-1984       Rev. John Ryan

            1984-1987       Rev. Charles Yost, SCJ

            1987-1995       Rev. John Slattery

            1995-2001       Rev. Gerardo Mendoza

            2001-2006       Rev. Santos Ortega

            2006-2008       Rev. Gregorio Honorio, MS

            2008-               Rev. CiroLibanati





                                                                                                Prepared by:  Diocesan Archives

                                                                                                                        April, 2014

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