The first mass of the newly formed St. Ambrose Parish was held in the auditorium of Deerfield Beach Junior High School on September 22, 1962, celebrated by the first Pastor, Father Sebastian Loncar.
Approximately 450 people attended mass each week, and after only two weeks Fr. Loncar secured the use of two stores on Federal Highway (the present site of King Toyota) to serve as a temporary chapel. Several men of the parish volunteered their time to renovate these stores and erect a sanctuary, furnished with wooden folding chairs and donated statues. The first mass in this temporary chapel was offered on the first Sunday of November, 1962. At this time about 920 people attended and 700 families registered in the parish.
The new parish continued to grow by leaps and bounds, and in September 1964 the first Church / School multi-purpose building wascompleted and dedicated.
The first school year began in 1964 in the main circular building with grades one through five. Each year another grade was added until grades one through eight were completed. In 1967 a second building and covered walkway were built which presently accommodate our pre-k and kindergarten classes.
In 1980 a third building was added which now contains our music and locker rooms, office space and our sixth grade class.
In 1999 two additional classrooms were built that now house our seven and eighth grade classes. In September of 2002 our current Pastor, Fr. Bryan Dalton completed the building and dedication of our new state of the art Library and Computer Center as well as our new school offices and children’s lavatories. This past June 2003 saw the additional improvement in our school of completely fencing in the campus in order to provide a safer environment for our school children.
The years since the first chapel was built in 1964 saw the evolution of a rapidly growing parish community. In 30 plus years, the first Church and School buildings were built, the Rectory purchased, renovated and enlarged,and the building and dedication of our present Church were completed.
In addition the basketball and tennis courts were added and the Parish Center was renovated and enlarged to its current two-story accommodation.
The Parish has now grown to over three thousand registered families and swells to over twice that number when our seasonal parishioners join us each year from the north.
Upon the dedication of our current sanctuary, which took, place on June 10th, 1978, then Pastor James Connaughton in his homily stated, “Thru the doors of Saint Ambrose Church pass the world’s greatest parishioners!” and those words apply to this very day!
From the very beginnings of this parish in 1962 to the present, this community has come to the full maturity of providing for the needs of all.
Their continual sacrifice is a demonstration of their undying love of God.
The most wonderful quality of the St. Ambrose Community is their gift of loving generosity.
“For you can give with out loving, but you can not love without giving.”
In 1993 our current Pastor Bryan Dalton was installed to lead St. Ambrose. Under his guidance a Christmas present and Easter basket drive has taken place each year and has become a wonderful seasonal tradition.
Through the overwhelming generosity of the parishioners, untold thousands of gifts and baskets have been provided to the poorest children of many communities in our Archdiocese..
In addition Fr. Dalton began a St. Ambrose Family Carnival that has become the largest of its kind in the area. This carnival not only provides revenue to assist in the operation of our school, but also serves as a vehicle which helps bring the entire parish community closer together.
One cannot enter the doors of St. Ambrose Church and not be spiritually and emotionally moved by the beautiful and uplifting liturgies. Under the guidance of our Pastor, Fr. Bryan Dalton, St. Ambrose Church has grown to become an oasis from which Gods people can experience the presence of His eternal love and living examples of His spiritual joy through the graces they receive through this church!