Our History

St. Anthony statue

St. Anthony’s Parish was formed in 1953 when Calgary had a population of 180,000.   The title, “St. Anthony” was of interest because a small school by that name was already located in the area of the proposed church.  In actual fact, the proper title of the church and parish is St. Anthony of Padua.

On May 1, 1953, Bishop F. J. Carroll canonically established the new parish of St. Anthony to serve the residents south of 34 Avenue, with Father R. P. Sullivan appointed as the first pastor.  He rallied the forces for new parishioners within the community and celebrated the first Mass on July 1, 1953, in the former St. Anthony School.  Masses took place there for a few Sundays, then moved to the nearby public school, because of the large crowds.

Pastor and parishioners then formulated plans for a new combined church and hall at the present location (5340 – 4 Street SW) and construction began on September 1, 1953.  With the hard work and determination of the pioneer parishioners, completion of the church became a reality on November 1, 1953, and Christmas Eve Mass took place on the main floor of the original hall.

Then on March 6, 1957, Father Sullivan established a building committee to plan for a new church.  After many meetings and building fund drives, a sod-turning ceremony took place on August 1, 1959.  Construction of the current St. Anthony church began on August 1, 1960.  The laying of the new church’s cornerstone was on December 31, 1960.  Construction finally finished in 1961, along with the solemn blessing of the church.  Celebration of the first Solemn High Mass took place on June 25, 1961.

During those times, St. Anthony’s parish family grew from 50 to 3,600 parishioners.

PASTORS AT ST ANTHONY'S CHURCH 
Rev. R.P. Sullivan1953-1963
Most Rev. J.L. Wilheim 1963-1966
Most Rev. E.J. Cooney (administrator)1967
Rt. Rev N. R. Anderson 1967-1968
Rev. P.B. O’Byrne 1968-1970
Rt. Rev. J.Q. Killen1970-1972
Rev. S. Henke1972-1977
V. Rev. J.J. O’Brien1977-1987
V. Rev. P. Cramer 1987-1995
Rev. J. Maes1995-1998
Rev. J. Dowling1998-2001
Rev. E. Estaris 2001-2008
Rev. William Stephenson (administrator)2008-2009
Rev. James Hagel 2009-2012
V. Rev. Jack Pereira 2012-2019
Rev. Edmund Vargas 2019-