Mary Immaculate-Saint Cyprian, North Side

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North Side

Parish History

Mary Immaculate-St. Cyprian was established in 1964.  The parish was formed by the merger of Mary Immaculate and St. Cyprian parishes in that year.  The cause of the merger was an urban renewal project.  To make room for the redevelopment, St. Cyprian church had to be razed.  As a result, the two parishes were merged and the two congregations joined.  Mary Immaculate Church then became the parish church.

As redevelopment led to the creation of the parish, redevelopment led to its suppression.  In 1973, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation purchased St. Mary Church on the North Side along with other properties to build an interchange for I-279.  However, as construction was not to begin immediately, the diocese rented the church back from the state for eight years.  This agreement ended in September of 1981.  Because of the declining population of the North Side, the diocese decided not to build a new St. Mary Church, but instead to merge St. Mary with Mary Immaculate-St. Cyprian.  The new parish was to be named Our Lady Queen of Peace and Mary Immaculate-St. Cyprian church would serve the new parish.  Mary Immaculate-St. Cyprian parish was suppressed on September 28, 1981.

Mary Immaculate

Mary Immaculate was established in 1940 as a mission of the Italian Regina Coeli parish.  The mission was established to meet the needs of the Italian residents of the East North Side.  In 1939 the priests of Regina Coeli conducted a census of the East North Side and found about 400 families in the district.  In 1940, the bishop gave his permission for the parish to establish a mission there.  The first Mass in the new mission was celebrated in the American Legion Hall on July 21, 1940.  Mass continued to be held in the American Legion Hall until the mission could get its own church. 

On December 24, 1940, the parish purchased the Tenth United Presbyterian Church.  Renovations to the building began on February 1, 1941.  The new church was dedicated on June 29, 1941.  This church remained a mission of Regina Coeli until 1964.  In that year, St. Cyprian Church was sold and slated for destruction to make room for an urban renewal project.  Mary Immaculate was merged with St. Cyprian to form the new Mary Immaculate-St. Cyprian parish.  Mary Immaculate Church remained open to serve as the church for the new congregation.

Photos From the Diocesan Archive:

Mary Immaculate Church, 1944

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