A revival of spirituality, as well as the repainting of the Church in 1995, improved the beauty of the interior of Holy Rosary under Father Anthony Manocchio. Father had been a much-loved professor and Spiritual Director of Mount St. Mary’s Seminary, Maryland. Fr. Anthony, was scheduled to have open heart surgery on December 22nd, but decided to postpone the surgery so he could be with his parishioners are Holy Rosary for Christmas. Sadly, he passed away on New Years Eve in the Rectory before mass his sudden death on December 31st, 1995 left both the Parish and the Seminary in shock.
Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick then appointed Father Robert LaFerrera as administrator. During his tenure a new ambo was installed and a new sound system. In 1998, former Holy Rosary priest Father [Monsignor] Joseph Chiang became administrator of Holy Rosary and later pastor. During Monsignor Chiang’s tenure the parish center was completely renovated along with the park behind the church. In 1999 a new sound system was installed and in May 2000 a campaign began for the restoration of the pipe organ. The organ now 47 years old was deteriorating and needed to be repaired. Parishioners again generously contributed over $50,000 and the organ was restored. In December of 2002, new digital bells were installed in the bell tower. The new bells, in addition to playing the angelus, intone hymns prior to Mass.
In the spring of 2003, Monsignor Chiang announced his retirement as pastor of Holy Rosary. Archbishop John J. Myers appointed Father Rino Lavaroni, a former priest of the Parish as pastor of Holy Rosary. Fr. Rino was faced with the tuff task of revitalizing the parish which lost much of its spirituality and parishioner base.
In the spring of 2004 the Archdiocese announced plans to merger, liquidate and consolidate several parishes in the Archdiocese. Included in these recommendations were Holy Rosary and our neighbors, St. Anthony. The Archdiocese recommended that Holy Rosary and St. Anthony’s join St. Michael’s Church (Parish of the Resurrection) and that their properties be liquidated. In response Holy Rosary has set up a Taskforce committee to help revitalize the parish and submit counter recommendations to the Archdiocese for their approval. Though the months ahead are uncertain for Holy Rosary, the pastor and the parishioner’s trudge on and continue to bring new life into the parish. In less than 2 years, we have doubled our parishioner base, and in less than a year, all outstanding debts, left from previous administrations, will be paid. Jersey City is going through a gentrification, and the parish is beginning to realize its effects. The new parishioners are from all walks of life and are all slowly becoming a part of the family of Holy Rosary.