Mater Dolorosa

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Mater Dolorosa

Mass Schedule:

Saturday Vigil: 4:00 p.m.

Sunday: 8:00 a.m.

Weekdays: M 11:00 a.m.; T/F 9:00 a.m.;

Th 10:00 a.m. at Chicora Medical Center

Holy Days: HV 7:30 p.m.; H 4:30 p.m.


Saturday: 11:00-11:30 a.m.

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Administrative Center:

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

Church Building:

409 N Main St
Chicora, PA 16025

Religious Education: Mater Dolorosa Catechetical Center:

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


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

Additional Information:

Parish ID:


Open Date:


Neighborhoods Served:


Parish History

Mater Dolorosa was founded in 1875.  The establishment of the parish can be attributed to the discovery of oil in the area in the early 1870's.  Before that time, the area was a farming area with a small Catholic population.  The local Catholics usually traveled to St. Patrick, Sugar Creek or St. Joseph, North Oakland for Mass, although the pastors of St. Patrick made occasional visits to the area. 

With the discovery of oil, the local population exploded.  In 1873, the pastor of St. Patrick began offering Mass weekly in an old log school house.  The next year, the bishop authorized the building of a church and in 1875 land was purchased for that purpose.  The new church was dedicated on November 7, 1875.  Within a year, the population had grown to the point that the parish considered building an addition to the church.  Before anything could be done, oil production began to decline and the population dropped rapidly.

From 1875 until 1924, Mater Dolorosa was a mission of St. Patrick, Sugar Creek.  In 1924, the parish became independent with the assignment of a resident pastor.  The church was renovated in 1925 and enlarged in the 1930's.  In 1951, St. James, Petrolia became a mission of Mater Dolorosa.  In 1968 St. James was merged with Mater Dolorosa. 

By the 1960's, it became obvious that the old church would have to be replaced.  Ground was broken for the new church on July 25, 1965.  The cornerstone was laid on September 25, 1966 and the completed church was dedicated on November 24, 1967.

In 1993, because of a shortage of priests in the diocese, the pastor of Mater Dolorosa also became the administrator of St. Joseph, North Oakland.  Although both parishes remain independent, the same priest has responsibility for both congregations.

Photos From the Diocesan Archive:

Mater Dolorosa Church, 1933
Interior of Mater Dolorosa Church, 1933
Altar of church, 1933
Mater Dolorosa Church, 2002

File Attachments:

Mater Dolorosa Parish Map.pdf168.55 KB