"We are a very welcoming community," says the Rev. Chris Gustafson, pastor of Our Lady of Ransom, one of three large…More Catholic churches in Niles.
The congregation consists of a geographic mix (Niles, Park Ridge and unincorporated Des Plaines), a socioeconomic mix (middle class, upper middle class and blue collar) and an ethnic mix (Polish, Irish, Italian, Anglo, Filipino and Indian).
"Everyone comes together beautifully, and together we form a parish community," says the Rev. Gustafson.
The ethnic mix is reflected in the parish's celebration of such holidays as Simbang Gabi, a Filipino celebration, and Maria della Grotto, a regional Italian celebration.
The parish began in 1960, and parishioners celebrated its 50-year anniversary in August 2010. The church, which opened its doors in 1962, was remodeled in 2006. A video about the parish appears on its website.
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