Saint Teresa of Avila Parish
Celebrates 100 Years of Faith
Last year, beginning with the dedication and blessing of
the outdoor statue of Saint Teresa of Avila on October 15th, 2017,
our year-long celebration of our 100th birthday kicked off!
Bishop Edward Deliman presided, along with Father Jerry Wild
at the Mass and the ceremony which followed, where Parishioners
in attendance enjoyed refreshments, fellowship, and the opportunity
to purchase some commemorative keepsakes like STA spiritwear, STA 100th annimversary bookmarks, car magnets, and more!
Click here to see the photo gallery of this joyous event!
Even before Washington and his troops braved the long, cold winter of 1777-1778 at Valley Forge, Jesuit Missionaries passed through the area ministering to the hardy Catholic settlers. While the region continued to develop well after colonial times, it wasn't until later that the Philadelphia Protectory for Boys (Saint Gabriel Hall), founded under the auspices of the Christian Brothers, made its institutional chapel available to the
Catholics of the immediate neighborhood.
Father James J. Gildea, who served as chaplain of the Protectory, realized that some provision should be made for Catholics scattered throughout the Valley Forge area. He was successful in obtaining permission from the Most Reverend Archbishop Prendergast to open a mission church in a vacant storeroom adjoining the former Garnett's Grocery in Port Kennedy.
Thus, on August 24, 1918, a congregation of fewer than twenty parishioners attended the celebration of the first Mass as the tiny chapel
was dedicated to Saint Teresa of Avila.