Ascension Of Our Lord Catholic Church
A sacred place on the river for more than 250 years
French missionary priests arrived here in 1704 to evangelize the Chetimaches Indians. Around 1770, Spanish militiamen built a log chapel here. In 1819 the parish erected the first official church building, followed by a brick church in 1843. Today's large Gothic structure opened in 1896 after many construction delays.
Louisiana government's Ascension Parish, founded in 1807, was actually named after this Donaldsonville church. Through decades of war and peace, parishioners and travelers have found inspiration and consolation here.
Ascension Catholic Cemetery is among the oldest and largest in south Louisiana. Burials include Confederate and Union soldiers, descendants of Acadian exiles, and Dr. Francois Prevost who performed the first Caesarian section delivery in Louisiana.
In this historic photo the 1843 church (left) is dwarfed by today's church. The old church stood where you are now standing.
St. Vincent's Institute was established about 1850 by the Daughters of Charity as a school, hospital, orphanage and convent. The building stood in the line of fire during the Civil War but survived.
The dome above the altar features Native American designs in memory of the Chetimaches Indians. The marble columns were carved in Austria and transported here by riverboat. Workers built a special railroad line to bring the columns here from the dock.
Ascension of Our Lord is
a family of faith united in
prayer, love and Catholic
to spreading the good news
of Jesus Christ through
and Christian example.
Ascension of Jesus into Heaven
"No sooner had he said this, than he was lifted up before their eyes in a cloud which took him from their sight."
--Acts of the Apostles 1:9
Erected by Ascension Parish Tourism Commission.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & Religion • Settlements & Settlers.
Location. 30° 6.246′ N, 90° 58.992′ W. Marker is in Donaldsonville, Louisiana, in Ascension Parish. Marker can be reached from Mississippi Street north of Church Street, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 716 Mississippi Street, Donaldsonville LA 70346, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other
More about this marker. Located under a drive through portico/overhang at southern entrance to church.
Credits. This page was last revised on August 28, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 28, 2020, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana. This page has been viewed 251 times since then and 19 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 28, 2020, by Cajun Scrambler of Assumption, Louisiana.