Bethlehem Lutheran Church

In the early 1870's, Danish farmers in the Rock Creek precinct held worship services in their homes. Members conducted the services and a congregation was formed in 1875. A church was built on donated land two miles southeast of the town. Church members did the construction and dedication was on July 2, 1891. A debt of only $12.75 remained at the time of dedication.


Services were conducted occasionally by visiting ministers and later held once or twice a month by sharing a pastor who also served other churches. Due to theological differences, the church divided into two congregations; the Danish Lutheran of Rock Creek and the Nazareth Lutheran in Davey. At that time, August 3, 1890, the name of Danish Lutheran was changed to Bethlehem Lutheran. The Danish language was used for Sunday services until approximately 1930.

Church Reconstruction

On June 17, 1946, the church building was struck by lightning during an electrical storm and burned to the ground. In 1948 a new stone church was built in Davey. The men of the church did the construction, and the church women did the inside finishings. The building was dedicated in December of 1949. In 1961 the Bethlehem and Nazareth Lutheran Churches agreed to merge into a combined congregation. Services were held at Bethlehem Lutheran and the Nazareth building was sold.

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Nazareth Lutheran Church

The church congregation was organized on August 1, 1891. The congregation voted to accept the Fremont and Elkhorn Railroads' gift offer of a lot in Davey. This congregation affiliated itself with the Danish Evangelical Church Association, known as the Blair Synod. A church was built and dedicated in May of 1892.

Our Savior's Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church of Rock Creek, Nebraska

A second split occurred in the Danish Lutheran Church in 1896. A group of families organized a third congregation under the name of Our Savior's Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church of Rock Creek, Nebraska. They used the Nazareth building for services and by October they merged with the Nazareth congregation. The Nazareth Lutheran Church joined the United Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1896. By the end of 1961, Davey's two Lutheran churches had merged into one known as the Bethlehem Lutheran Church.

Union Church

In as much as the two Lutheran churches were still using the Danish language, persons wishing English services organized a Sunday School in early 1916 and met in the District Number 82 school. Later that year a union church was built on the grounds of Tothill Cemetery at 27th and Davey Road. This congregation was short-lived and the buildings were later sold.

St. Mary's Catholic Church

The first Catholic Church in Rock Creek precinct was St. Patrick's, located two miles north of Davey in the Irish settlement known as Enterprise or North Settlement. The first mass was held in the early 1870s in a sod house and later in various parishioners homes and the District 54 schoolhouse. In 1878 a church was built on a five acre track of land purchased for $75. When the village of Davey was established, discussions began about moving the church to Davey.

North & South Parish

This caused the parish to split into the North Irish and the South Irish. In 1901 the south faction bought the Methodist Church in Davey. The Davey Church was known as St. Mary's and was a mission of the St. Patrick's Church.

Church Rebuilt from Fire

In 1909 a fire destroyed St. Patrick's Church. Two lots were purchased across from the St. Mary's Church in Davey to erect a new parish rectory. This was completed in 1910. Twelve years later the north church was dismantled and in 1919 fire destroyed the Davey Church. A new brick church was built and dedicated in 1923. The two parishes then merged into what is now know as St. Mary's.