St.Paul the Hermit Parish celebrates 150 years


St.Paul the Hermit parishioners Bob Meehan (left) and Raymond Morris (right) with Bishop Guy Desrochers outside St. Paul the Hermit Church.

Peter L.Smith

SHEENBORO – Residents and friends of St. Paul the Hermit Parish celebrated the 150th anniversary of the parish on Sunday, October 9. Bishop Guy Desrochers of the Diocese of Pembroke, to which Sheenboro belongs, was present. Parish Priest Reverend Scott Murray celebrated the Mass. The Sheenboro choir provided the hymns with Cindy Wheeler on the organ.
The Bishop noted how fitting it was to be celebrating a 150th anniversary on Thanksgiving weekend. “It’s a time when we pause to give thanks for our many blessings. Sometimes we all need a little boost in our daily lives to help us remember all for which we have to be thankful,” mentioned Bishop Dsesrochers. Everyone gathered at the parish hall after Mass for a luncheon and to view some archives courtesy of the Sheenboro Archives committee.

St. Paul’s Parish, as it was first known, was canonically erected in 1872, the date of the opening of the parish register. It later became known as St. Paul the Hermit Parish. He was also known as Paul the First Hermit and Paul of Thebes, an Egyptian hermit. Sheenboro Township dates back to as early as 1850 when the first settlers (victims of the famine) arrived from Ireland. Mass was first celebrated in the home of Andrew Keon until 1855 when a log chapel was built. The first priest was Reverend Patrick Meehan. The present “basement” Church was constructed in 1918 after a disastrous fire.