Saint Joseph, North Oakland

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Saint Joseph, North Oakland

Mass Schedule:

Sunday: 10:30 a.m.

Weekdays: T/F 11:30 a.m.

Holy Days: 7:30 p.m.


Saturday: 11:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

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Administrative Center:

PO Box 243
Chicora, PA 16025-0243
Phone: 724-445-2275
Fax: 724-445-7507

Church Building:

864 Chicora Rd
Chicora, PA 16025

Religious Education: Ritzert Catechetical Center:

PO Box 243
Chicora, PA 16025
Phone: 724-445-3713


Rev. Richard J. Thompson, Pastor
Rev. James R. Orr, Administrator

Additional Information:

Parish ID:


Open Date:


Neighborhoods Served:

North Oakland

Parish History

St. Joseph was founded in 1847.  The origin of the parish can be traced to a petition sent to the bishop on May 6 of that year requesting permission to build a church.  The early history of the parish is not well documented, but it appears that the frame church was built in 1847 and the first Mass was celebrated on Christmas Day of that year.  The congregation at that time consisted both of Irish and Germans.  Mass was celebrated once a month by a German priest from St. Peter, Butler and once a month by an Irish priest from St. Patrick, Sugar Creek and, beginning about 1861, from St. Patrick, Brady's Bend.

In 1863, the first resident pastor was assigned to St. Joseph. By 1872, the congregation grew to a point that a new, larger church was needed.  Construction of a brick church was begun in that year, about 100 yards from the original church, with the bricks made by members of the congregation on the church grounds.  The completed church was dedicated on June 28, 1874.

The first two pastors of the parish were able to speak both German and English.  The pastor of St. Joseph at the time the new church was dedicated could only speak English, however.  The German congregation requested permission to form a separate parish using the old church.  The bishop granted permission and on July 18, 1877, the old church was rededicated as St. Joseph (German) Church.

This church continued to serve the congregation for over a century.  It has been remodeled several times and, in 1954, escaped unscathed a tornado that struck North Oakland.  On January 16, 1966, St. Joseph reunited with St. Joseph (German) parish.  The St. Joseph (German) church was closed and used as a receiving chapel for St. Joseph Cemetery.

As part of the diocesan-wide Parish Reorganization and Revitalization, a determination was made in 1993 that the parish would be joined with nearby Mater Dolorosa parish in Chicora.  While St. Joseph remains an independent parish, it shares a priest with Mater Dolorosa.

Photos From the Diocesan Archive:

Front view of church, 1934
Side view of church, 1934
Main altar, 1934
Side altar, 1934

File Attachments:

St. Joseph Parish Map, North Oakland.pdf142.01 KB