Saint James, Petrolia

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Parish History

St. James was founded in 1874.  The church was the outgrowth of the oil industry in the 1860's and 1870's.  Before the establishment of the parish, Petrolia was attended from St. Mary, Parker beginning in 1871.  Work began on a church in Petrolia in 1874 and the completed building was dedicated to St. James on November 22, 1874. 

Due to the small size of the congregation, St. James never had a resident pastor.  It was a mission of St. Mary, Parker from 1875 to 1885; of St. Patrick, Bradys Bend from 1885 to 1896; of St. Eusebius, East Brady from 1896 to 1917; of St. Joseph, North Oakland from 1917 to 1934; of St. Mary, Parker again from 1934 to 1951.  After 1951, the church was a mission of Mater Dolorosa in Chicora.

By the 1960's it was obvious that the church was in poor condition and would have to be replaced.  After a long debate and study, it was determined that the best solution would be to merge St. James with Mater Dolorosa.  On June 16, 1968, the final Mass at St. James was celebrated and the church was torn down in September 1968.

Photos From the Diocesan Archive:

St. James, 1968
Altar, undated

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