SAINT JAMES THE GREATER CHURCH
Saint James Parish strives to be aware of the unique nature of our Roman Catholic tradition and our call to be a Christ-centered community. As baptized members of this faith community in a diverse Christian environment, we strive to promote the kingdom of God on earth. We achieve this through the Scriptures and by celebration of the Eucharist which draws us into a deeper personal relationship with Christ. Through this relationship with Christ we share our faith with all the people of God. We strive through Catholic education, the Faith Formation Program, evangelization, and good stewardship to mirror Gospel values as we reach out to serve the larger community.
Saint James the Greater Roman Catholic Church’s first Mass was celebrated in 1884 in the Uncapher Building on North 4th Street. The Apollo parish was established in 1885, meeting in the home of James Reynolds, then in the skating rink on Warren Avenue. A resident priest was assigned to the parish from the Benedictine Community of Saint Vincent Archabbey from 1890 to 1894. When the population growth shifted to Vandergrift, the priest took up residence in Vandergrift and Saint James reverted to the status of a mission church. In 1892 a small church was built in the Pegtown section of North Apollo. This building is now used as a private residence. In 1926, Masses were held in Gianini Building until 1929 and then in private homes through 1944. On September 21, 1944 Father James Hanlon was appointed resident pastor of Saint James. The new church was built in 1954 on Owens View Avenue with the school building opening in 1955. The school closed in 1998.