By Tony DeGol
This year marks the 175th anniversary of Saint Mary Parish in Hollidaysburg.
Established by the Diocese of Pittsburgh, Saint Mary was originally a mission parish to Saint Patrick Parish in Newry.
On March 17, 1844, the church was dedicated and consecrated to the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Bishop Mark L. Bartchak celebrated a Mass of Thanksgiving at the parish on March 16 followed by a reception in the parish hall.
During the year, a commerative item will be made available to each parish family with additional ones available for purchase.
As part of the celebration, an outdoor parish Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated on August 18 at 11:30 a.m. at Legion Park in Hollidaysburg followed by a picnic.
“I extend to each and everyone of you my sincere appreciate and heartfelt blessings as you continue to be a part of our spiritually rich faith community and remarkable history,” said Father Anthony J. Legarski, Pastor, in a message to his parishioners. “I am profoundly grateful to Almighty God, Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Most Holy Spirit, and Mary our Mother and patroness for their continual presence and guidance in the past and for generations to come.”