St. Peter and Paul ChurchHistory: The parish of St. Peter and Paul was established in 1857 as a mission of the St. Philomena German Catholic Church located in Pittsburghs Strip District. To better suit the needs of local catholics, St. Philomena built a new church in 1859 in what is now the East Liberty neighborhood. By the 1880's the congregation had outgrown the original church and it was rebuilt with the cornerstone stone being laid in 1890. The church was struck by lightning on August 5, 1909 causing a severe fire which destroyed the roof and interior of the church. However, the twin towers remained intact as did the perimeter walls and altar. The rebuilding of the church incorporated the remains of the old church and construction was completed in 1910. With the closing of the steel mills and the population exodus that followed, Pittsburgh did not have the resources to support it's numerous ethnic parishes. In 1992 St. Peter and Paul merged with 5 other congregations to form the new St. Charles Lwanga parish. The St Peter and Paul Church closed after the merger and was later sold.
**Restoration: In 1999 the church was featured in Kevin Smiths satirical comedy "Dogma" staring Matt Damon & Ben Afleck. Soon after, the church was robbed and severely damaged by corrupt antique dealers. Pews, light fixtures, confessionals, windows, and other items were destroyed or stolen. Today there is an ongoing preservation effort in place to rebuild St. Peter & Paul and turn the attatched parsonage and school into an aftercare center for at risk children. Work has already begun - the roof has been stabalized, the property secured, and local artisans offering to repair the steeple. But there is alot more still ahead of us. An event day is in the works to re-introduce the church to the community and raise awareness for the restoration project. If you are interested in attending or participating (in any form) please contact us using the information below. I will update this page with the specifics of the event when the details have been worked out.
Dr. Ken Stevenson (owner/pastor) - firstname.lastname@example.org
Matt Palmer (supporter/photographer) - email@example.com
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