Assumption Parish was founded in 1892. It currently has about 400 households. The following responses were provided by a committee of parishioners and Father Aaron Nett.
Q: What is the most interesting facet of your church building?
A: In the original building are beautiful exposed wood beams and a high altar made of hand-carved oak from Bavaria, Germany.
Q: What is the most popular program or initiative at your parish?
A: Assumption has had eucharistic adoration for the last 20 years; currently more than 100 people have committed time to pray regularly before the Blessed Sacrament. The pro-life movement and 40 Days for Life are heavily promoted. We hold a Baby Needs Drive and donate items to Birthline. We offer spiritual adoption, a young married couples group, yearly Steubenville trips and Faith & Fun Fridays — an after-school youth program involving prayer, catechesis and recreation.
We welcomed and served two Asian families in exile. One family from Laos with three children now owns a landscaping business in California.
In 1975 Assumption adopted a Vietnamese family of 11 who were refugees and needed our help; we answered the call to rebuild their life and home. The parish was very generous. Their lives have reflected this generosity in their service to others. Communication with this family continues yet today.
Q: What is an interesting historical fact or anecdote about your parish?
A: The very first Masses were held in the upstairs of the butcher shop in town. Prayerful environment and faithful families produced 36 consecrated religious (27 sisters and nine priests). The William and Susan (Weber) Lochen family had five daughters who became sisters.
Meet the pastor
Father Nett grew up on a dairy farm about nine miles south of Albany between the towns of Farming and St. Martin. He was ordained to the priesthood June 21, 2014. In his first two years, he was a parochial vicar in St. Cloud serving in the cluster of St. Mary’s Cathedral, St. Augustine and Christ Church Newman Center. In his second year the cluster was only St. Mary’s and St. Augustine’s. Father Nett has served in this current assignment at Assumption Parish for just over one year.
Q: What inspired you to become a priest?
A: When I was a Mass server and attending Catholic grade school in Albany, Father Jim Reichert was there. He made an impact on me because he was so present to the youth and would often come to the sporting events. He later became a friend of the family. My grandmother Catherine, I know, also prayed for me and encouraged me to consider the priesthood. Then, later on in life as an adult, there was a certain draw to Pope St. John Paul II.
Q: What do you enjoy most about your daily life as a priest?
A: I enjoy being with the people and youth the most. I love to meet young families and visit the homes. I also enjoy ministering to the elderly and sick. Getting to know the story of each person and how God has worked in their life is a great privilege. I also cherish the celebration of Mass and the great grace of forgiveness in reconciliation.
Q: What was the theme of a favorite homily that you preached?
A: I love to preach on themes of hope and how the truths of Jesus Christ and our Catholic faith are the hope of the world.