AKA: St. Paul's Catholic Church #2, San Francisco, CA

Structure Type: built works - religious structures - churches

Designers: Frank Thomas Shea (architect)

Dates: constructed 1897-1911

221 Valley Street
San Francisco, CA 94131

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Building History

Archbishop Patrick William Riordan (1841-1914) consecrated Saint Paul's in 1911 following 14 years of construction. Architect Frank T. Shea (1859-1929) created the design, one of many that he and his brother, William Dennis Shea (c. 1866-1931). executed for the San Francisco Archdiocese. This was the second parish church erected for the Saint Paul's congregation, the first was begun in 1880. It was dedicated by Archbishop Patrick William Riordan on 05/29/1911.

Tel: 415.648.7538 (2013).

A History of Saint Paul's web site indicated that the church and its complex of six surrounding buildings required costly seismic upgrading following the Loma Prieta Earthquake of 1989: "In 1989 the Loma Prieta Earthquake struck. Although St. Paul's Church was not damaged, seismic upgrading became State, City and County Law. The most devastating blow to the Parish occurred on November 14, 1993, when the Archdiocese Planning Commission put St. Paul's on a list of parishes to be closed. It was believed that the required funds to retrofit the unreinforced masonry buildings of St. Paul's (six building in all--High School, Elementary School, Primary School, two convents and the Church) could not be raised by the community. On November 19, 1993, Archbishop John Quinn and the Commission heard our pleas and removed St. Paul's from the closure list. During the next eight years--St. Paul's High School, adjacent Convent and Primary School were sold, extensive fund raising was initiated (and continues), as a $1,000,000 grant was received from the Archdiocese. The Convent which serves as Novitiate for the Missionaries of Charity was retrofitted, a new St. Paul's Elementary School and Parish Center were built and the Church retrofitted and restored. In all the total cost was $8,500.000.00." (See "History and Purpose,"Accessed 03/14/2013.)

PCAD id: 4398