Organized as a mission in 1863, Masses were offered periodically by “missionary circuit riders” in the homes of people in Woodstock and North Lewisburg. With some growth in sight, interest was sparked to establish a permanent site for a parish in the northern part of Champaign County. Ground for the church was donated by Patrick Moran and his wife. They were among a group of Irish immigrants who followed the railroad to the North Lewisburg area, purchased parcels of land, and began farming. A frame structure was built under the pastorate of Fr. Nicholas Young.