More than 1,600 parishioners and guests joined Bishop Patrick J. McGrath as Our Lady of La Vang Parish broke ground on November 27 for a new house of worship.
The new church will replace the old building, which was heavily damaged by fire in August of 2012. At a cost of more than $50 million, there will be a 1,500-seat church as well as a multi-purpose hall with gymnasium and four state-of-the-art classrooms to be shared with Saint Patrick School on weekdays and the church on evenings and weekends.
Founded in 1872 as Saint Patrick Parish, it was the second Roman Catholic parish established in the City of San Jose following what is now the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Joseph. From 1981, when the Diocese of San Jose was founded, to 1990, Saint Patrick served as the cathedral for the Diocese. On July 1, 1999, the parish became the personal parish for the Vietnamese Catholics in the Diocese, while also remaining as a territorial parish for the Spanish and English speaking communities that surround it.
On April 28, 2013, the Bishop signed a decree renaming the parish in honor of Our Lady of La Vang, which refers to a Marian apparition at a time when Catholics were persecuted and killed in Vietnam.