June 15, 2017

Prince of Peace Celebrates 100th Anniversary of Parish Church

Members of the Prince of Peace Parish community in Steelton gathered May 27 for the celebration of the 100th anniversary of their parish church.

Prince of Peace Celebrates 100th Anniversary of Parish Church

Bishop Ronald Gainer, assisted by Deacon Michael Grella, blesses the congregation of Prince of Peace Parish.

The commemoration was highlighted by the celebration of Holy Mass by Bishop Ronald Gainer, musicians and choir, and several dressed in traditional Croatian attire in celebration of their heritage.

According to diocesan history, the first immigrants from Croatia arrived in Steelton in the early 1890s, working in the nearby steel mill. By the end of the century, some 60 Croatian Catholic families were living in the town, and a priest was traveling from Pittsburgh to tend to their spiritual needs.

After the establishment of their parish – Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – in 1898 and the initial purchase of a former Lutheran church for their house of worship, the community worked under the leadership of Father Anton Zuvic to build its own church in 1917.

Demographic changes in Steelton in more recent years necessitated the consolidation of five parishes in Steelton – Assumption BVM, St. James, St. Ann, St. Peter and St. John the Evangelist – and they formed Prince of Peace Parish on July 1, 1995.

Prince of Peace Celebrates 100th Anniversary of Parish Church

Alessia and Antonina Tozzi, joined by Matej and Mateja Vukovic behind them, bring the gifts to the altar.

Father David Danneker, PhD, is currently pastor of Prince of Peace Parish. Its activities and outreach efforts include Mary’s Helpers, a food and clothing store for people in need of assistance; a Council of Catholic Women and a Knights of Columbus council; and an annual picnic in Cibort Park in July that annually draws attendance from the surrounding communities. This year’s event will take place July 9 from noon-8 p.m.

The parish has also announced the creation of its mobile app, which features vast prayer and educational resources sections, sacrament schedule, activity calendar, GPS directions, discussion board, prayer journal, Rosary and parish bulletins. Text the word “app” to 88202, or find it in the app store.

For information about the ministries and activities at Prince of Peace Parish, call the parish office at 717-985-1330 or send an e-mail to

By Jen Reed, The Catholic Witness

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