Sacred Heart began in 1910 with a small frame church. Now, more than 100 years later, we are blessed and honored to have the Catholic Faith alive in the Eldon, Missouri community, through the approximately 200 families that make up the Sacred Heart Parish. Sacred Heart is part of the Diocese of Jefferson City. Click here to download a history of Sacred Heart, 1910-2010.
To find out more information about the Parish or for questions about events, please contact the Parish Secretary, who can either answer your question or direct it to the appropriate individual. The Parish Office is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 2:30 pm. Phone 573-392-5334 / Fax 573-392-3493 / Email Sacred Heart
Pastor & Deacons
The following information provides a brief overview on the Pastor and Deacons at Sacred Heart. These individuals are here to help you grow in your Catholic faith and to answer any questions you may have!
Father Alex Gabriel is pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Eldon. Father Alex comes from India. He was born in Kerala and raised in Tamil Nadu in South India. He worked as a missionary in Eastern India in the diocese of Daltonganj in Jharkhand State. After 30 years of varied priestly ministries, he came to the U.S. to work in the diocese of Jefferson City in June 2013. He served as Assistant Pastor at St. Peter's Parish, Jefferson City from July 2013 to December 2014. He was then appointed Canonical Administrator of St. Mary Church, Glasgow and of St. Joseph Church, Slater. He worked there from January 2015 to June 2017. Since July 2017, he has been assigned to Sacred Heart Church as Canonical Administrator. He has been working in the Diocese on contract: His first term of contract with the Diocese was over June 2016 and then extended for another term of 3 years.
Gary Christoff is a Deacon at Sacred Heart. He and his wife Doris have three adopted children and several grandchildren. Deacon Gary was ordained September 1996 to the Diaconate in the Jefferson City Diocese. He served initially at St. Michael's Parish in Russellville and was assigned to Sacred Heart in 2006 to assist Fr. Fred Elskamp. Deacon Gary retired from the Missouri Department of Conservation, but prior to worked in Extension for the University of Nebraska. He says, “In McCook, Nebraska, etched in the marble facade of the bank on the square are the words, ‘Service Is the Price We Pay for the Space We Occupy on Earth.’ Those words are likely the beginning of my path to the diaconate. I've never forgotten them, trying to use them to guide my journey.”
Chet Zuck is a Deacon at Sacred Heart. He and his wife Marilynn were received into the Church on October 2, 2005. They have two sons and six grandchildren. Deacon Chet was ordained in April 2013 to the Diaconate in the Jefferson City Diocese. He is retired from the Missouri Department of Transportation. Deacon Chet says "there is a burning desire in my heart to share and to teach the Catholic faith and to serve the Church." As a deacon, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, he hopes to teach the faith and humbly serve God’s people. He and his wife, Marilynn, are catechists for the parish School of Religion and instructors in the RCIA program.