Archdiocese looks to Sarpy growth with land purchase

As it looks to the future, the Archdiocese of Omaha is purchasing 32 acres for a possible church and elementary school near Papillion.

Archdiocese officials gave no timeline for when a new parish could be established.

"Future development of the property will be determined by demographic changes in the area, including the pace of new home construction in west Papillion and Sarpy County," said Deacon Tim McNeil, chancellor.

The property, near 114th Street and Nebraska Highway 370, is large enough to accommodate a church, parish center, gymnasium, elementary school, playground, athletic fields and parking for 500 vehicles.

The purchase will help the archdiocese continue to meet the spiritual and pastoral needs of Catholics in growing areas around Omaha, archdiocesan officials said.

Papillion was identified through a year-long study, completed last spring, as a prime area for a possible new parish. It grew 23 percent over the last six years, most of it along Highway 370, and growth is expected to continue for the next decade.

The nearest parish to that area is St. Columbkille in east Papillion, which has limited ability to grow beyond its current 9,000 parishioners, officials said.

The archdiocese also is selling 16 acres to Trinity Lutheran Church on the corner of 90th Street and Highway 370, land the archdiocese has owned for more than 15 years.

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