Restrooms, Social Hall
Pastor: Rev Msgr James M Lyons VF
Parochial Vicar: Rev Ryan M Fischer
In Residence: Rev Lawrence J McNeil
Deacon: Deacon Thomas M Aumen
Deacon: Deacon Timothy J Shultis
Religious Education Coordinator: Mrs Stacey White
Facilities Coordinator: Helen Smith
Administrative Assistant: Gloria Ernst
Hispanic Apostolate: Veronica Braithwaite
Music Coordinator: Mark Topper
Secretary: Helen Smith
Weekend Mass Vigil: 5:00PM
Weekend Mass Sunday: 7:30AM, 9:00AM & 10:30AM
Weekend Spanish Mass Sunday: 12:00PM
Monday 6:30AM & 8:30AM
Wednesday 6:30AM & 8:30AM
Friday 6:30AM & 8:30AM
Weekday Spanish Mass: Wednesday 6:30PM
Sacrament of Penance:
Anytime by request
Saint Joseph Church, Hanover, like all churches in the area, looks to the Jesuit Fathers at ancient Conewago for its beginnings. The arrival of Catholics in Hanover antedates the founding of the town in 1764, and the faithful among them found their way to Conewago Chapel for divine services.
Hanover Catholics travelled to Conewago chapel for services until 1785, when land was purchased for a worship space. Lots 93 and 94 in the town of Hanover were purchased “in trust for the use of said congregation”. The date of the deed is January 3, 1785.
The only indication of the use of this property is given by a local historian who records that “from 1822 to 1826, Mass was occasionally said in a shop or old school house, on a lot owned by the Jesuits, along the alley east of Baltimore Street.” It appears that Mass was supplied occasionally for some years but there is no record of the disposal of the property.
An historic entry in the first baptismal record of Saint Joseph’s parish, dated November 3, 1863, describes the first step that led to the establishment of the parish. It said, “here begins the names of those baptized from the town of Hanover where at this time the Jesuit Fathers from Conewago, on Wednesday heard confessions, distributed Holy Communion, and instructed the youth in Catholic doctrine.”
Masses were celebrated in this space and in private homes until 1865 when a former Protestant church was purchased. In 1864 the Methodist Episcopal Church on Baltimore Street was purchased and enlarged in 1865. . Mass was provided the first and third Sunday of each month. In the same year the first parochial school in Hanover was established. In 1873 the Sisters of Saint Joseph took charge and continued until 2015.
The first resident pastor was a Jesuit Father who built Saint Joseph’s Church which was dedicated in 1880. Upon his death the parish was given over to the diocese. The new pastor built the rectory and school. Then began the long and memorable pastorate of Father James A. Huber, who served devotedly until 1940 when he died at the age of 86.
The venerable church, which served the parish for over eighty years, was declared unsafe for public assembly in 1963. It was razed and services were provided in the school auditorium.
A new parish school was built in 1950 to replace the old school that was established in 1873. It has served the children’s educational and religious needs, and from 1963 until 1975 Mass was celebrated in the school auditorium due to the church buildings’ structural damage. A new church was completed in 1975.
The Monsignor Gribbin Parish Center, completed in 1996, houses a gymnasium, social hall, meeting rooms, and classrooms for the school of religious instruction and for the middle school. A new parish administrative center-priests’ residence was dedicated in 2001. Established in 2004 and staffed by volunteers, a thrift shop was opened in the former rectory.
On August 13, 2017 the new Saint Joseph Parish School and Education Center on Grandview Road blessed by Bishop Ronald W. Gainer. This addition was sorely needed to meet the growing needs of the parish. The nearly 12,000 square foot addition includes: eight new multi-purpose classrooms; new offices for the school principal, nurse, and School of Religious Instruction (SRI); new secure entrance vestibule and lobby; restrooms for students and faculty; new copy and storage rooms; expanded kitchen supply room; and new voice, data, and other advanced technology systems.
The elementary school classrooms (originally located on Baltimore Street) have been moved to the new addition in time for the 2017-2018 school year. The former Baltimore Street school building (built in 1949 and expanded in the early 1960’s), is for sale.