In the late 1940’s and early 1950’s the southern Pompano Beach and northern Ft. Lauderdale area was served by Our Lady of the Assumption Mission on A1A, and was part of the Diocese of St. Augustine under Archbishop Joseph P. Hurley. As the area grew and a large number of young families began to call it home in the late 1950’s, Archbishop Hurley and Father Michael J. Fogarty of Assumption decided to build a school to meet the educational needs of the young population. Our Lady of the Assumption School opened to a small number of students in September of 1958. One month later, in October of 1958, Pope Pius XII divided the Diocese of St. Augustine and the southern portion became the Diocese of Miami under Bishop Coleman F. Carroll. The second parish created by Bishop Carroll was St. Coleman Parish – on May 7, 1959.
Bishop Carroll transferred Father Fogarty from Our Lady of the Assumption Mission to the newly formed St. Coleman Parish as its founding pastor. Father Fogarty immediately faced and embraced the challenge to design and build a full parish complex, including a church, convent, parish hall and school on the property it currently occupies on North Federal Highway in Pompano Beach. St. Coleman thrived and grew for 15 years under the leadership of Father (and later Monsignor) Fogarty.
In 1974 Monsignor Fogarty retired and Monsignor Dominic Barry became the second pastor of St. Coleman Parish. During his 15 year tenure as pastor, Monsignor Barry ushered St. Coleman through a period of tremendous growth and change. A new rectory and church were built and continue to serve the parish today, while the old church building became the parish hall, and the building that formerly served the parish hall became classroom space.
Upon the death of Monsignor Barry in 1989 Father Thomas Foudy became the third pastor of St. Coleman Parish. Under Father Foudy’s leadership the parish continued to flourish. Father Foudy had a special love and devotion to St. Coleman School and he was able to substantially increase the capacity of the school through building and improvements, including converting the original rectory and convent buildings into classroom space, adding an outdoor gymnasium and installing state-of-the-art technology. As a permanent tribute to Father Foudy’s commitment to Catholic education at St. Coleman School, the parish hall was named in his honor just prior to his retirement in 2015.
Father Henryk Pawelec assumed the role of pastor at St. Coleman in 2015 and served in that capacity for 3 years through the summer of 2018.
In August of 2018, Father Michael Garcia assumed his current role as Administrator of St. Coleman parish. Father Michael brings great joy and enthusiasm to the St. Coleman community as it enters a new chapter with great hope for the future.