Cromwell was settled in 1650 as part of
Middletown and was known as Middletown Upper Houses.
In 1846, there were three Catholic families living in
Middletown Upper Houses. They attended Mass at St. John's in Middletown.
On June 3, 1877, Fr. Francis F. O'Keefe celebrated the first of many Masses in Stevens Hall opposite the former Citizens Bank on Main Street. At that time there were 350 Catholics
of first and second generation Irish and German extraction.
In February 1880, Fr. John Ryan became the first resident pastor of Cromwell with Rocky Hill and Kensington as mission churches.
The first church structure at its current location known as St. John Church was built by Father John F. Murphy, a former Protestant minister, and dedicated on April 15, 1883. That
first church was destroyed by fire on March 1, 1953.
The present church was constructed by Fr. Thomas Lane and dedicated on October 17, 1954. Over the years, fifteen pastors have served St. John Church.
In 1995, the Franciscan Friars (order of Friars Minor Conventual) of St. Anthony of Padua Province were invited by the diocese of Norwich to administer to the parish. Fr.
Raymond Borkowski, O.F.M. Conv. was appointed the first Franciscan pastor with Fr. Hilary Brzostowski, O.F.M. Conv. as parochial vicar.
Today, Fr. Mark Curesky is our pastor.