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The history of Our Lady of Fatima Roman Catholic Church began years before the actual building became a reality. As early as 1941, public Mass was offered in Vernon Township to accommodate the Catholics who came to vacation in the hills and at the lakes in this area. Mass was offered every Sunday during the summer months on the second floor of the Vernon Fire House. The following year,  in 1942, the site of the Mass was moved to the original Club House at Highland Lakes for the summer season.

On May 28, 1950, in response to the needs of the Catholics residing in the area of Vernon and Highland Lakes, the pastor of St. Monica's Church in Sussex, Monsignor Christian D. Haag, instituted a permanent Sunday Mass schedule. Priests vacationing in the area, especially Monsignor Leroy McWilliams, graciously assisted by offering Mass. 

During the summer months, Sunday Mass was offered at the Club House; during the winter months, Mass was celebrated in a small, one room building that once served as an activities office for the Highland Lakes Club and even as a beauty shop! Over the years, this building has been enlarged and continues to serve the needs of the community at the comer of Waconia and Highland Lakes Roads.

The beauty of Highland Lakes attracted an ever increasing number of people. The summer and year-round populations were growing and, to serve the needs of the Catholics of this community, plans were made to build a permanent church. The present building was started in August of 1954 on land generously donated by Mr. John R. Seckler. Mass was offered in it for the first time by Monsignor Haag on May 29, 1955. 

The church was dedicated on June 26, 1955 by Most. Rev. James A. McNulty, Bishop of Paterson. Until June of 1965, Our Lady of Fatima was a mission church served by the priests of St. Monica's Parish in Sussex. 

The Parish of Our Lady of Fatima was established on June 18, 1965 when the then Bishop of Paterson, Most Rev. James J. Navagh, appointed Rev. Aloysius J. Busch the first pastor of the newly formed parish. The parish encompassed almost two-thirds of Vernon Township and had as its mission. St. Francis de Sales Chapel in McAfee. The Parish was legally incorporated on October 5, 1966 and Mr. John R. Seckler and Mr. Joseph Meister, Sr. were named as the first lay trustees. To serve the great influx of summer  parishioners as well as to provide a place for parish events during the winter months, a parish hall became an obvious need.  

Construction, delayed by the untimely death of Bishop Navagh began in April of 1967 and was completed by September of the same year. The sanctuary of Our Lady of Fatima Church was also renovated and the rectory adjacent to the church was built at the same time.

The value of a parish hall became apparent immediately when the Vernon Board of Education began using it in September of 1967 for classrooms. Classes were held in the hall until January of 1970. The parish hall continued to serve the needs of the community in the following years as a polling place and a meeting room for the monthly Pack Meeting of the Cub Scouts. The Vernon Township Women's Club met monthly in the hall. Parish social events and meetings, high school Religious Education Programs, a pre-school group, grade school dances and even a Dancing School constantly showed how important this addition was for both our parish and our community. 

The growth of Our Lady of Fatima parish was possible only with the involvement of countless parishioners over the years. The main source of strength and inspiration has always been the weekend Eucharistic Celebrations. The dedication of the choir members and organists, those who served as lectors, altar servers, and Eucharistic Ministers added to the peace and joy of our celebrations.

The Religious Education Program has always been a primary concern and succeeded in strengthening the faith of our children because of the commitment of many adults. The Rosary and Altar Society, which began to serve the parish in November 1965 has cared for the altar and raised funds for the needs of the sanctuary and the church hall. 

Many others have donated their time and talents by being part of the annual Parish Carnival, decorating the church for the feast days and caring for the church property. The growth of Our Lady of Fatima was paralleled by the increase of parishioners who attended St. Francis de Sales Mission Chapel. The original building was located in McAfee at the intersection of Routes 94 and 517 adjacent to the Great Gorge Ski Area.

Anticipating future needs, Father Busch purchased twenty acres of land on Route 517 across from the Walnut Ridge School in  October of 1966. In 1979 St. Francis de Sales became a separate parish under the guidance of Rev. John V. Boland. Our Lady of Fatima celebrated its 50-year anniversary as a parish in 2015.