Our Story & Mission

"By living out our faith in the Risen Lord, we glorify God and spread the Good News of Jesus in word and deed."

Located in the heart of the City of Lansing, the Church of the Resurrection exists to help everyone in our parish family live in the light and hope of the Resurrection. Encouraged by our experience of God’s love, we help others come to know and love Jesus in a personal way. Guided by God’s truth, we offer answers to life’s real challenges. Inspired by the Holy Spirit, we help each other become mature disciples of Christ who will utilize our gifts to spread the Good News of Jesus in word and deed.

We are mission-focused...
This means we seek to spread the Gospel with joy, create opportunities for people to encounter the Love of God in Jesus, and help them grow in maturity as disciples of Christ.

We are authentically Catholic...
This means we embrace and teach the Truth as we find it in and through the Church; we worship in spirit and truth in a way that is both reverent and beautiful; we foster a truly Catholic culture; and we seek to live lives marked by stewardship.

We are supportive of families...
This means we commit to partnering with parents and supporting them in their role as the primary educators of their children in the ways of faith; we seek ways to strengthen marriages; and we provide other practical supports for families.

Cor ad cor loquitur! Heart speaks to heart!


On June 15, 1922 Michael James Gallagher, Bishop of Detroit, sent Father John A. Gabriels to Lansing to establish a new Catholic parish. The boundaries of the new parish would be from Michigan Central and Pere Marquette railroad tracks, running east to include East Lansing, Okemos, Haslett and Bath. 120 families of the neighborhood formed the nucleus of the new parish. Fr. Gabriels requested that the church be named "The Church of the Resurrection" since the Resurrection of Jesus is the cornerstone of all Christianity.

On July 7, the property at the corner of Michigan and Rumsey Avenues was purchased and over the next few years seven additional pieces of adjacent property were added. On Christmas Day, 1922, the people of the Church of the Resurrection celebrated their first Mass together in their new church which could accommodate over 700 people.

The need for a school was apparent and in 1926, within a short period of the time, the money had been raised for the building project. The Sisters of St. Dominic of Adrian, Michigan agreed to staff Resurrection school. The school opened its doors to 350 students in the fall of 1926. As the parish grew, so did the school. By 1936, the parish had to rent two stores across the street so that the high school students would have room for their classes.

In September, 1938, the school had a total enrollment of 750 students in 12 grades. Because of these increased numbers a new high-school building, with an auditorium and 10 classrooms, was built and was dedicated by Bishop Albers in May 1940.

Parishioners responded to the need for a larger convent for the sisters by starting a fundraising campaign. The 30-room facility was ready for occupancy in 1949. The old convent was then converted for more classrooms.

By 1951, 4,500 people were attending Sunday Masses and as a result of these crowded conditions, a capital campaign for a new church was begun. The new church was dedicated by Bishop Albers on October 3, 1952.

On New Year's Day 1960, parishioners waiting for Mass received the devastating news that Monsignor Gabriels had died in his sleep. The Bishop's funeral eulogy related how he had dedicated himself entirely to his work of laying the foundations of Catholic faith in the parish and how he had left his devoted people a legacy of faith.

Fr. Francis Martin was installed as the second pastor of Resurrection on March 15, 1960 and immediately turned his attention to the crowded conditions at Resurrection school and St. Mary Cathedral school. By 1963, two new high schools were completed. Fr. Martin retired in 1986.

He was succeeded by Fr. William Koenigsknecht in the summer of 1986. Under his leadership in 1990, a new parish pastoral council was formed to represent the various groups and ministries. Fr. Koenigsknecht retired in 2011, and was succeeded by Fr. John Fain who served at the parish for only one year.

Fr. Steve Mattson was named the fifth pastor of the Church of the Resurrection in 2012. Fr. Steve had served as Superintendent of Schools and Chair of the Department of Education and Catechesis for the Diocese of Lansing from 2009 to 2015.

In 2014, two sisters from the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, were assigned to teach in our school. The Lansing Mission assigned two sisters to teach at Resurrection School and two at Lansing Catholic High School.

In the summer of 2014, Fr. Steve negotiated with the owners of 1601 E. Grand River to allow us to take over the space that was being rented by WomanCare, an abortion clinic. On October 1, 2014, we took over that property and Bishop Boyea, accompanied by the diocesan exorcist, Fr. Steve, and others, prayed exorcism prayers over the building.

The south suite of 1601 E. Grand River became our parish office, and the north suite became home to the New Life Center, a place of hope and healing for those who have experienced or been harmed by abortion. In April 2017, the parish offices moved to their current location at 1514 E. Michigan Ave, across the road from the church.

In 2012-2013, along with the entire Diocese of Lansing, the parish prayed to the Holy Spirit, asking Him to "Come!” Since then we have seen a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the parish and surrounding areas, as God comes into people’s lives with mercy and healing.


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