Jim, I came across your blog several months ago but when I read the article on chaurches I had to write you. I grew up in Duquesne, born 1/23/45, to Very Rev. Stephen Loya and Margaret Loya, the 16 child of 17 children. My father was pastor of Saints Peter and Paul Byzantine Catholic Church located at 304 South First Stree, a Slavic church, and later relocated to 701 Foster Ave around 1962. I remember when my family first moved to Duquesne from Portage Pa in 1944 that my older siblings of grade school age were not permitted to enroll at Holy Name School because the Sisters of St Joseph and Fr Shaughnessy thought we were Greek Orthodox. After my dad"taught" and fought with HNS that we were united with Rome, were we Loyas allowed to be enrolled. I was a choir boy with Holy Name Church and an alter boy at Sts Peter and Paul. I remember signing the Roman Mass in Latin on Sundays then went to my church to serve as an alter boy and sign the liturgy in Slavic language. I remember Sister Josephine, picked two Slavics, my younger brother, Tim and I, plus two other choir boys, both Irish, to lead the Roman litany of staints in Latin and the other choir boys responded with "Ora pro nobis"... some of the saints' names were real tongue twisters. Duquesne...a great place to have fun and adventure growing up and learn values while growing up. To the gang on South First Street, Debbie, Arlene, the Wallaces, , Pat Murphyt, Craig Newmyer, Eugen Heaps, Jimmy Hartman, Gabe, Thanks for the memories
I am pretty sure my great great grandmother priscilla kennedy was one of the founders of the methodist episcopal church. I wemt there when I was growing up. I wonder if it is still an active church since I moved away many years ago.
I believe my great grandfather Andrew Gavlik was the founding pastor of the Slavish Congregational Church. In 1902 it may have been located at the corner of South Second Street and Priscilla Avenue? Sometime in the 1920's or 30's the church moved to 121 South Fifth Street. My parents attended the church until it disbanded sometime in the late 1990's (?) Anything about the early history of that church would be interesting since not many relatives are left to tell the oral history.
Not so fond memories of St. Joe's..Larry Curran and I assaulted by Fr. Bernarding. He was a most passionate priest but had a temper. He did wed my wife Jean Ann Rinkacs and me and kind of apologized..
We had no choice of churches. We lived closest to St. Hedwig's Church and had to attend there. Our family is not Polish, but we were required to attend there. I always remember hearing Mass in Latin and the sermon in Polish. I didn't understand anything until I was given a Missalette later on. It was a beautiful church, but the basement where we had Catechism on Saturdays and where the bathroom was located, was a spooky place. Fr. Stanislaus S. Kupiac was the priest through the 50's and into the early 60's. If you missed Catechism on Sat. morning, he would call your house and check up on you.
I did not live in Duquesne but my mother grew up there and her dad's family settled there when
they came over in 1893. They attended St. Joseph. I was given a picture of a group of adults and alter boys in front of St. Joseph's and was able to pick out my great-grandfather, great uncle and my uncle who was an alter boy so I'm very much interested in St. Joseph Church.
I also want to say I enjoy the Duquesne Hunky very much. I grew up in Liberty Boro and we did visit relatives in Duquesne and, of course, went to Kennywood for our picnics. I always loved going past the Carnegie Library. My one regret is I never was inside the building.