Church History & Architecture

The history of St. Augustine’s Parish goes back over 100 years . Since it is so extensive we have prepared a brief chronological review. The information for this chronology is from the book Saint Augustine’s Parish, A Centennial History (1892-1992) and is based on the articles written by Mary E. McGahan and Joseph G.E. Hopkins. For more information and pictures, please read this interesting and informative book.

1892

Michael Augustine Corrigan, Archbishop of New York, establishes the parish of Saint Augustine, Larchmont, New York to serve the growing community and the mostly Catholic servants working in Larchmont.

First Mass in the new St. Augustine’s church on the northeast corner of Beach Avenue and Linden Ave. Over $5,000 of the contributions for the church was raised from non-Catholics in the community. see photo Original Church – click to enlarge

Father Edmund Power appointed pastor

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1906

Father Patrick Morris named pastor

1912

John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York, dedicated St. Augustine’s first parochial school. The granite school building located at approximately the same site of the current school auditorium contained four classrooms on the second floor and a school hall on the first floor. The school was staffed by the Sisters of St.Dominic of Newburgh.

1914

Women’s Suffrage Rally held in St. Augustine’s School Hall.

1916

Ladies Guild of St. Augustine’s Parish (predecessor to the current Ladies Auxiliary) active in parish support.

1919

Father James Brady appointed pastor see photo Msgr.

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1921

St Augustine’s expanding congregation was too large for the Beach Avenue church which could only seat 250 people. The school was expanded to permit Masses to be said there until a new church could be built. St Augustine’s parishioner base was approaching 700.
Show performances were held at St John’s Parish House for the benefit of St. Augustine’s parish.

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1922

Beach Ave. church and rectory closed. Masses now celebrated in St. Augustine’s School Hall. A new Rectory was built on Monroe Ave adjacent to the Dominican Academy, a private school which was staffed by the same order of nuns assigned to St Augustine School.

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1925-26

The Amory Estate which was on Cherry Avenue and extended from Larchmont Avenue to Monroe Avenue was acquired as a site for the new church. The Amory home which is now the current rectory was moved down Cherry Avenue to make room for the church.

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1926

The Amory Estate which was on Cherry Avenue and extended from Larchmont Avenue to Monroe Avenue was acquired as a site for the new church. The Amory home which is now the current rectory was moved down Cherry Avenue to make room for the church.

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1928

After 19 months of construction the new church was dedicated on Sunday Morning May 21, 1928 by Patrick Cardinal Hayes, Archbishop of New York. The Larchmont Times reported “The Prince of the Church was received with all the pomp and splendor befitting the dignity of so high a personage. All Larchmont will share the pride of the congregation of St. Augustine’s in the acquisition of the new church.” see photo Church Interior circa 1928 – click to enlarge

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1936

Father Thomas Deegan D.D. begins his 28 year tenure as pastor see photo Msgr. Deegan – click to enlarge

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1939

In furtherance of his plan to build a new school, Father Deegan acquired from Laura Albee, widow of Edward Albee, the land between the Larchmont Library and the 1912 school.

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1940

Ground-breaking for construction of the current school building which was to be of Gothic architecture conforming with that of the church. Msgr. Deegan’s plans for a girls high school on Larchmont Avenue across from the church were never completed.

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1941

Archbishop (yet to be cardinal) Francis Spellman, Archbishop of New York, dedicates the new school building which was designed to accommodate 520 students see photo St. Augustine’s school building – click to enlarge

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1941-45

Many parishioners served in the various armed services during World War II – those listed on the Memorial Plaque next to Our Lady’s Altar as having made the ultimate sacrifice are: Charles J. Boyle JR., John E. Brady, Wilbur E. Buckingham, James A Callaghan, Pasquale Carino, Charles E. Dolan, John Ehret, Kenneth Foster, Joseph E. Kane, George W. McElroy JR., Hamilton E. Morris, Fred P. Motz JR., Luke J. Murtha, Frank J. Roma, Vito Sabato, Joseph J. Sganga, Gerard J. Schaefer, Richard J. Shea, Vincent Stouter, Andrew E. Tuck III, George Walker and Anne Kathleen (Kay) Cullen. see photo

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1943

Father Vincent McShane appointed as an assistant priest. Father McShane remained at Saint Augustine’s for 26 years. Larchmont Catholic Library established

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1949

SS. John and Paul parish established

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1951

Three young parishioners lost their lives in Korea during the war between North and South Korea. These names are listed on the Memorial Plaque next to the altar of the Sacred Heart: Mario DeSenso, William M. Hickey JR. and Francis H Mac Donnell.

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1962

Annex to School built to relieve overcrowding – over 675 children enrolled in the school

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1964

Monsignor John J. Corrigan appointed pastor. Msgr. Corrigan’s plans to build a new convent and a new rectory with parish meeting rooms were never completed. see photo Msgr. Corrigan – click to enlarge

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1965-75

Many parishioners were once again called to serve in the armed forces during the war between North and South Vietnam . Those who died are listed on the Memorial Plaque with the Korean casualties they are: Anthony P. Agar, John P. Batterson JR., Daniel M. Brown, Ernest J Hill, Daniel J. Keating, James J. O’Donnell and Richard A. Western

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1968

After formation of study committees and frequent lengthy debates among parishioners, a Parish Council Constitution was approved. Members of the parish elected to the first Parish Council.
Father John K. Daly appointed pastor see photo Msgr. Daly – click to enlarge

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1969

Parish Council recommends that a “professional” Director of Religious Education be retained. School enrollment was approximately 390

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1973

Dominican Sisters of Newburgh end their over sixty years of service to the School

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1974

Father William V. Reynolds appointed pastor see photo Father Reynolds – click to enlarge

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1975

Father Joseph DeSanto joins the parish. Father DeSanto assisted at St. Augstine’s for 32 years. see photo Father DeSanto

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1976

St. Augustine’s parochial school is closed

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1980

Seniors Program initiated with Sister Josephine Rooney R.S.H.M. as director

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1987

Monsignor Walter F. Kenny appointed pastor; see photo

Sister Rita Halligan I.H.M. becomes director of Seniors Program Monsignor Kenny

Sister Mary Gallagher, S.C. appointed Director of Religious Education and holds this position until 1999

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1990

Sanctuary of the church renovated to conform with the guidelines of the Second Vatican Council.

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1992

John Cardinal O’Connor, Archbishop of New York, joins the parish in the celebration of its 100th anniversary see photo St. Augustine’s Parish 100th anniversary – click to enlarge

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2000

Cancer Sewing Group celebrates its 55th anniversary.
The Parish celebrates Jubilee 2000 with a colorful procession through parts of the Manor followed by Mass in the Church.

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2001

The Parish Council presented a new silver ciborium to the Parish as a memorial gift in honor of those parishioners who were lost in the World Trade Center Disaster on September 11th: Helen Crossin-Kittle and her unborn child Patricia Helen Kittle, John T. McErlean, Jr. and Chris T. Orgielewicz. Read more about activities at St Augustine on 9/11. see photo

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2003

Parish celebrates the seventy-fifth anniversary of the dedication of St. Augustine’s Church on Larchmont Avenue.

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2004

The Parish joins with Monsignor Walter F. Kenny and Father Joseph DeSanto in celebrating the 50th Anniversary of their ordination to the priesthood.

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2007

Monsignor Thomas R. Kelly appointed pastor. see photo

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2008

Successful Bicentennial Campaign raises funds for major renovations of the Church and School buildings.

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2011

Timothy M. Dolan, Archbishop of New York, visits the parish to dedicate the school auditorium in honor of Monsignor Walter F. Kenny. see photoArchbishop Timothy M. Dolan – click to enlarge

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