St. James Church

The story of St. James Parish actually began twenty years before the September 19, 1949 groundbreaking ever occurred. Thanks to the foresight of Bishop John O'Hern, who purchased a parcel of land just outside the city limits in 1929, the Diocese had only to engage an architect when a 1949 census showed the need for a parish in the fast growing eastern section of Rochester.

Founding Pastor, Father Francis Feeney, began his mission of overseeing the construction of a small church, school and hall in July of 1949. The thirteen room, two story school capable of caring for five hundred children, registered 220 youngsters in kindergarten through eighth grade in its opening in September 1950. From an August 1949 hearing to approve building, through to a May 30, 1950 dedication, the clergy and laity engaged in a wonderful, yet arduous process of creating a church - St. James Church of Rochester, New York.

Over the years, the church sanctuary has been renovated (1974) in compliance with post Vatican II directions and St. James School has closed (1990) due to Diocesan reorganization, but what is essentially St. James remains intact.

What appears to be a simple brick structure belies the unique blessing of the St. James faith community. Its people are deeply religious, gospel-filled, caring, talented and generous. Many of the founding parishioners and their families remain to espouse and strengthen our parish church and its beliefs. We celebrate our rich tradition, founded on the sacrifice and determination of committed and faithful people and enriched by zealous clergy and religious. It is this which makes St. James the home that we love and a Catholic heritage that we proudly claim as our own.