In 1785, St. Bernard Catholic Church was established to serve the colonist from the Canary Islands that settled along Bayou Terre aux Boeufs. It was the first church below New Orleans, thus becoming the mother church for St. Bernard and Plaquemine Parishes. Construction on the first church began in 1787, and the founding pastor was Mariano de Brunete. The second church on the site was built in 1852.
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