Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church
Hot Springs Village, Arkansas
In June, 1973, 15 Catholics gathered for the first Mass in Hot Springs Village at the Calella Fire Station as celebrated by Monsignor Bernard Malone. This activity led to Thursday evening Masses at the Village Methodist Church, celebrated by Father Reynolds, the pastor of St. Mary's Church in Hot springs, Arkansas.

In 1978, the growing number of Catholics formed an association called the Village Catholics and petitioned Bishop Andrew J. McDonald for permission to build a Catholic Church in the Village. After raising sufficient funds, ground was broken for the church in July, 1981. The church was dedicated by Bishop McDonald on May 11, 1982.

The name of the parish, Sacred Heart of Jesus, was chosen by Father Robert Kepple, a priest stationed in Hot Springs, who celebrated Mass on weekends at the Coronado Center during the period from 1979 until the new church was built. Father Kepple continued celebrating Mass at the new church until 1986 when he was transferred to other duties in the Diocese.  Bishop McDonald then assigned Father Frank Draude to minister to the parishioners at Sacred Heart, often assisted by Father Alan Rosenau, newly-ordained.  By 1986, the number of parishioners had grown to 650, and three Masses were required to serve them.

The original sanctuary (now the chapel) remains, and the present narthex was part of the former church. The doors to the chapel are the original front church doors. Stained glass windows that lined either outside wall of the old church are now mounted around the altar area in the chapel. 

In 1993, Bishop McDonald established Sacred Heart as a canonical parish and appointed Father, now Monsignor, Riedmuller as Pastor of Sacred Heart, in addition to his duties as Pastor of St. Mary's Parish in Hot Springs.  Father Draude was then appointed Associate Pastor.  In October, 1994, the new church, with a seating capacity of approximately 800, was dedicated.

In 1996, Monsignor Riedmuller was relieved of his duties at Sacred Heart, and Father Raymond Rossi was assigned as Pastor.  At the same time, Father Draude retired, and Father Rosenau was assigned to other duties in the Diocese.

Father Rossi retired in 2002, and Monsignor Bernard Malone was assigned as new Pastor.  Monsignor was assisted by Deacons Bernie Bauer, Bill Friedman, Wally Gieringer and Larry Lipsmeyer.  Also, Father Victor Bieberle, a retired priest from Wichita, Kansas Diocese, celebrated Mass from time-to-time in an emergency.

In June 2007, the Administration and Education Building was added to the church, as well as a rectory and Memorial Gardens.  Monsignor Malone then retired, and Father William Elser was assigned Administrator for the parish in June, 2010.

There are, as of May 2016, 833 households and 1,393 parishioners in Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Hot Springs Village, Arkansas; and we pray that, with God's will, we will continue to grow as a Catholic community.