Saint Jude Parish History
On June 2, 1962, His Excellency Archbishop John J. Krol established Saint Jude Parish on a 30-acre site in Central Bucks County. The site was purchased for $38,900. The founding pastor, Father Robert A. Gregg, named the parish for Saint Jude, patron of desperate causes, and visualized a regional Saint Jude Shrine. Weekly novenas continue to this day at the Shrine. Original families numbered 325. Today we number over 2,400 families representing over 8,400 parishioners. Proudly and confidently, Saint Jude Parish prays, educates, and helps others.
- An old farmhouse was converted into a chapel/rectory.
- Sunday Masses were celebrated in Forest Park, a local amusement park.
- Saint Jude School, under the leadership of the Sisters of Mercy, opened in September, 1963.
- Church, school, and convent were dedicated on December 15, 1963.
- A major school expansion was dedicated on July 7, 1981.
- Our Church burned to the ground on October 9, 1982.
- Our new Church was dedicated on September 23, 1984.
- St. Jude Education Center was dedicated on October 7, 2006, featuring eight additional classrooms, a library, technology lab, and gymnasium/hall.
Shrine of St. Jude Thaddeus
Our founding pastor, Father Robert A. Gregg, was determined to develop his new parish to its fullest potential. As he wrote in his memoirs, “I wanted to fulfill a pastoral dream of establishing an Eastern Shrine to Saint Jude, patron of desperate, urgent, and needy cases. So many people in the Archdiocese have been anxious for such a shrine and a weekly novena to Saint Jude.”
- March 28, 1963: Ground breaking ceremonies took place.
- October 27, 1963: The Shrine of Saint Jude was opened for public worship.
- December 15, 1963: The Shrine was dedicated and solemnly blessed by Archbishop Krol.
- October 9, 1982: The original Church/Shrine was destroyed by fire.
- September 23, 1984: The new and present Church/Shrine was dedicated by Cardinal Krol.
The Shrine offers hope and spiritual comfort to those who come each week for the Novena Devotions. Others, not confined to a novena’s time frame of nine consecutive services, stop in for a visit, light a candle, leave a petition. Those unable to visit send letters with special requests. They all are ever mindful of the great favor of Saint Jude and his intercessions on their behalf, never ceasing to know him as their special and powerful patron.
For over 50 years the Shrine has had a dynamic devotional impact on the Saint Jude community. The Shrine of Saint Jude is open every day of the year and features Novena services, Eucharistic Adoration, and Benediction every Thursday. A life-sized statue of Saint Jude and a devotional relic are kept in the shrine.