St. Paul Parish celebrates 175th anniversary

Oct 11, 2018 399

Escaping agricultural and economic depression, thousands of Irish immigrants fled their homeland in the mid-19th century — many of whom would come to settle in South Philly. As strangers, they sought a sanctuary where they could foster culture, community, and, of course, Catholicism.

Under the authority of Bishop Francis Patrick Kenrick of Philadelphia, the newcomers’ need blossomed into fruition, as St. Paul’s Roman Catholic Church became officially established in 1843 under the pastorship of Patrick F. Sheridan. For close to the next two centuries, the parish’s demographics shifted but the various foreign populations held one concept in common — an idea the church’s current pastor strives to uphold.

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