The Church of St. Peter
The Church of St. Peter began as a mission church in July 1888 when Catholics from the area asked Bishop John Ireland to send them a priest to celebrate Mass. These first Masses were offered in the Enterprise Building where the people worshipped in an empty storage room and built an altar from old lumber.
The Old Church
On January 8, 1889 the parish was incorporated and parishioners discussed plans for a church of their own. St. Peter’s Parish purchased the Congregational Church on June 21, 1889 to use until they could build their own church on the property they purchased on the corner of 12th and Margaret Street. In July 1902, after several years of service from the priests at Guardian Angels, St. Peter’s received its own resident priest Father Peter Joseph Lang.
The cornerstone of the current church was laid in 1915. A new church was built in 2008. This included a new gathering space and administrative offices. The old church was incorporated in our new church and is used as a daily mass chapel which was dedicated in honor of Father Austin Ward.
St. Peter School
The old church was turned into St. Peter Catholic School and was staffed by the Sisters of St. Joseph. In 1925 St. Peter’s completed an extensive church decorating project which included new Italian marble altars, beautiful stained glass windows, new pews, and a pipe organ. In November 1929 a new St. Peter’s School was completed.
The completion of the school and convent were celebrated in November of 1929, less than a month after the stock market crash of “Black Tuesday.” At that time there were 393 families. Times were hard and families paid “pew rents” to help keep the parish from foreclosure.
St. Peter’s parish has seen steady growth in both its parishioner base and parish facilities since the 1920’s. In 1957, the parish had 600 registered families and several building projects were completed including: a new rectory in 1958.
In 1971 the people of St. Peter’s built O’Reilley Hall, a multipurpose parish center, and added additional office space in 1983. Fellowship Hall and a Perpetual Adoration Chapel were built in 1994 to further enhance parish meeting, social and worship spaces.
The Church of St. Peter merged with the The Church of the Holy Redeemer in 2007. More about the merger.