St. Patrick’s History
Early in 1869 Rev. S. V. Ryan the Bishop of Buffalo appointed Rev. Patrick Hopkins who was then assistant at St. Peter and Paul’s to take charge of and build up the new parish of St. Patrick. The church lot was purchased Dec 30, 1869 for $4,000, most of it debt. But on July 12, 1870 a grand picnic was held at Hoffman’s Grove which netted $1,600 which allowed a temporary location to open for services May 1, 1870. Fr. Bloomer, pastor at the time took rooms at the Delevan House, a hotel near the church until April 1872. The Fourth St property was purchased April 17, 1872. The corner stone of the new church was laid June 30, 1872. The walls of the church were well up when the cold weather set in and nothing more was done until the following April.
The masons resumed work on April 9, 1873. The panic struck the parish a severe blow for it killed the rolling Mill Industry, which was the back-bone of local support. The church was roofed in and all paid for to this time. However the Mills shut down and there was a complete collapse of industry with not enough to finish the church building. In 1884 Fr. Bloomer purchased property for a school and convent. The school was built in 1893. In 1899 the parochial residence at Park Place and Fourth St was obtained.
The parish was growing so much that in the spring of 1940 Fr. Brien the pastor called the attention of Bishop Kearney to the growing community in West Elmira. He felt that, because of the distance from St. Patrick’s these parishioners were not receiving the care that they should. In response to his appeal, the Bishop commissioned a new parish in West Elmira – to become Our Lady of Lourdes