St. Paul Catholic Church

About Us

In April of 1967 adjoining acreage was obtained and in early 1970, Bishop Joseph G. Vath decreed the establishment of the Parish of St.

Paul in Athens.  Fr. Timothy J. Hill was assigned as the first resident parish pastor.  Contributions from parishioners were sufficient to pay for the construction of a rectory on church property built by the Baker & Shaw Construction Company.  That rectory building now houses the church office.

 

In September, 1972, Fr. Hill was transferred and Fr. John P. O’Brien became the second pastor at St. Paul’s.  He organized Bingo games in the Knight of Columbus Hall in Huntsville to raise funds for an addition to the rectory for CCD (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine) classrooms.  This addition was completed in 1973.

Fr. O’Brien died in December 1976 and was succeeded by Fr. Francis Craven in 1977.  Fr. Bernard Mulcahy followed in 1982 and remained until his retirement in 1989.

 

By 1989, when Fr. Joseph Allen was assigned to be pastor , the church had grown well beyond the 18 families of the 1960s.  Fr. Allen initiated an extensive building program to meet the needs of this rapidly developing Catholic community.  The new church building, with ample seating for over 300 people, was dedicated in 1992.

 

 

In 1996, Fr. Allen and the parishioners built a new parish hall with classrooms, library, kitchen and dining hall to accommodate the ever growing parish.   In 2000, an additional two classrooms, storage closets, and a Youth Room were added to the hall.  A part of the old church was remodeled to  house a small chapel for daily Mass and two more classrooms for CCD instructions.

 

 

The parish built a new rectory in 2004 while still under the direction of Fr. Allen.  The rectory was built to accommodate a pastor’s living space, including an office, as well as space for a future assistant pastor and for visiting priests.  It also houses a suite for the diocesan Bishop’s use when he is in North Alabama.  Fr. Allen never lived in the new rectory, but chose to remain in the old rectory upon retirement. 

Original rectory built in 1970

Addition to rectory for CCD classrooms, 1973

St. Paul Catholic Church 1992

St. Paul Catholic Church Hall

1996

 

St. Paul Catholic Church 1992

New Rectory built in 2004