Early Catholic settlers in Lubbock and on the Texas South Plains celebrated mass with traveling priests in private homes. Beginning in 1905, Father Joseph Keller traveled from Slaton to offer mass for Catholics at the Merrell Hotel. In December 1924, Bishop Joseph Lynch and the Diocese of Dallas started Lubbock's first Catholic Parish, dedicated to St. Joseph. Father M.G. French came from Slaton twice a month to lead the congregation at its North Avenue P location.Recorded Texas Historic Landmark
When Texas Technological College (now Texas Tech University) opened in 1925, the city grew to the west, bringing more people to this area. Father Gabriel Diamante and Dr. Bessie Lee organized a Newman Club for the college's Catholic students in 1934. The following year, Bishop Robert E. Lucey of the Diocese of Amarillo began plans to construct a second local church. The Diocese purchased this site and hired O.R. Walker and James E. Atcheson to design and build a Spanish mission-style church here. The Building's eclectic design shows Byzantine and Spanish Colonial influences, with elaborate stonework featuring stylistic elements and religious symbolism.
Dedicated on March 29, 1936, the church was named for St. Elizabeth to honor the mother of Papal Countess Katherine Price, who contributed greatly to the building project. Father Diamante became the first
pastor. Over the years, the parish added programs and facilities. Members helped establish a Catholic student center as part of St. Elizabeth University Parish in 1980. Today, the church represents a diverse membership of ages, races and nationalities, including university students and longtime Lubbock residents.