Two Historical Sites to Open for Public Visitation This Summer

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The faithful will once again have the opportunity this summer to experience some of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown’s richest history as two landmarks will open for public visitation.

The Prince Gallitzin Chapel House in Loretto will be open on six Sunday afternoons from 3:00-6:00 p.m.: June 11, June 25, July 9, July 23, August 6, and August 20.

The Chapel House, which is adjacent to the Basilica of Saint Michael the Archangel and the Our Lady of the Alleghenies Shrine, was the home and personal chapel of the Prince-Priest and Servant of God Demetrius Gallitzin.

Today, it stands as a museum, which contains cherished and intriguing artifacts from Father Gallitzin’s personal life.

Meanwhile, Saint Joseph’s Mission Church at Hart’s Sleeping Place in Carrolltown will be open for tours on three Sunday afternoons from Noon until 3:00 p.m.: June 18, July 23, and August 27.

Located on Strip Road in Carrolltown, the mission church is the oldest church in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown.

Blessed by the Prince-Priest and Servant of God Demetrius Gallitzin in 1830, it was the center of Catholicity in northern Cambria County until 1850 when Saint Benedict Parish was established not far from the site. Now, maintained by the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, the log structure — hidden by white shingles, and surrounded by the graves of early settlers — is one of Cambria County’s most notable landmarks.