78 Years of Academic Excellence
On Christmas Eve of 1939, the first parish Mass was celebrated in the “new” church (now known as Herron Hall in honor of the first pastor Reverend Thomas Herron). Formal opening of the new church-school building took place in March of 1940. At the dedication ceremonies, Archbishop Thomas Joseph Walsh told the parishioners he had named the parish after his own patron saint, St. Thomas the Apostle. In January of 1940, Father Herron arranged for two sisters from Sacred Heart Parish to conduct religious education classes for the children of the parish who were attending public schools. It represented the beginning of what ultimately would become St. Thomas the Apostle School.
St. Thomas the Apostle School opened on September 9, 1940. The enrollment at the time was 376 pupils. Sister Alice Dolores served as Principal and Eighth Grade teacher of the school, which was staffed by seven other Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth, and one lay teacher. St. Thomas the Apostle School enrollment reached its peak of approximately 900 in the mid 1960’s. In August of 1968, Monsignor Vincent Coburn was appointed as the fourth pastor of St. Thomas the Apostle. Under his leadership, a significant school building renovation project was completed in November of 1969 including a new library, cafeteria, and meeting rooms. The former church was renamed Herron Hall. The refinished auditorium-gymnasium was renamed for Reverend James Flanagan (the parish’s second pastor), and the new school library was named for Monsignor Michael Magnier (the parish’s third pastor).
The school will be reaching its 78th anniversary in September 2018.