The Catholic Church of the Epiphany of the Lord was organized by the Most Reverend Charles Salatka, Archbishop of Oklahoma City in 1976. The first Mass was held in June of that year, in the Chapel at the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center, which was our first church home.
On May 18, 1976, Archbishop John R. Quinn sent a letter to Reverend Philip Bryce to commission a new parish. The parish was given the name, “Church of the Epiphany of the Lord.” Epiphany was formally established in June 1976 with Fr. Philip Bryce serving as the founding Pastor. Our boundaries were established as: Wilshire Boulevard on the south, Northwest 192nd Street on the north, Meridian Avenue on the east and Cemetery Road (now County Line Road on the West) and covered 75 square miles. The first Mass was celebrated on June 20, 1976 in the Chapel at the St. Frances de Sales Center for Christian Renewal, now called the Catholic Pastoral Center. Over 100 hundred families were in attendance.
In 1979, Archbishop Charles A. Salatka permission was sought and granted Epiphany permission to build a permanent facility and our parishes first home. Architect, Paul Meyer was selected and the Waldrop Brothers Construction Company was awarded the contract. The first Mass in the newly constructed sanctuary (now Bryce Hall) was celebrated on June 21, 1980 and a Rectory was completed in 1982. The membership at the time was 632 families. Epiphany lost 2 parishioners in the Murrah Building bombing in downtown Oklahoma City: Julie Welch and Mark Bolte. An Epiphany classroom is dedicated in Julie’s memory.
On October 7, 1983, the parish celebrated ground breaking ceremonies to build the existing sanctuary. Howard and Porch was selected as Architect and Timberlake Construction Company was awarded the contract. A Mass of Dedication was celebrated by Archbishop Charles Salatka on July 1, 1984 with a parish membership of 830 families.
Fr. John Michalicka became Pastor in June 1985 and celebrated Epiphany’s tenth anniversary the summer of 1986 with 1,050 families. As our parish community grew, it became necessary to look into more space. Fr. Michalicka realized the need to expand and was instrumental in initiating the third phase of growth. In January 1993, the Archdiocese granted additional property to Epiphany plans to build additional classrooms and a family center were made. When Fr. Michalicka left in the summer of 1994, the parish debt had been paid off, and his dream of expansion was underway.
Fr. Lowell Stieferman arrived the summer of 1994 to help the parish develop and achieve its expansion goals. The theme of this expansion project was a “Field of Dreams.” The groundbreaking ceremonies for this phase of expansion were held on January 21, 1996 with the construction completed in October 1996. A Mass of Dedication was celebrated on January 19, 1997, by Archbishop Eusebius Beltran. The newly constructed Family Center included a gym for parishioners of all ages to come together for fun and fellowship, a Youth Room for the youth of the parish to gather, a Patio Room for additional meeting space as well as six new classrooms to meet the needs of our growing Religious Education classes. The existing parish hall, offices and kitchen were remodeled. After many months of hard work and sacrifice, Epiphany parishioners were able to enjoy this “Field of Dreams.”
Also under Fr. Stieferman, and with the help of the Building Committee, a $300.000 Sanctuary Renovation Project took place. A new granite altar, ambo, and baptismal font were added along with new carpet, flooring, and fabric for the pews. The Mass of the Dedication of the Altar and placement of Sacred Relics was February 15, 2004. The Stations of the Cross were installed under Fr. Stieferman’s guidance as well. Our membership grew to 1,500 families.
Fr. Stephen Bird became Pastor of Epiphany in 2005. With his artistic vision, the Rectory was remodeled, a $35,000 playground was installed, new chapel chairs were purchased, Bryce Hall and Foyer restrooms were remodeled, hanging angel banners were added to the sanctuary, a beautiful mural was commissioned and painted down the south hallway by our classrooms, and 4 life-size bronze statues were purchased and placed in the garden just outside our Chapel. In July of 2017, remodeling of our kitchen began and should be finished at the end of the year. Future plans included the remodeling of Bryce Hall. We currently have over 1,600 families.
In 1980, we dedicated the first phase of our present building, the area we now use as our social hall was our first Church. In 1984, the present church and sanctuary was dedicated. In 1998, we added more classrooms, a youth room, the Patio Room, and the Family Life Gymnasium.