Now the home of St. John of God Parish, this is a splendid Gothic church that many another Catholic diocese would be proud to have for its cathedral. The fact that there are literally dozens of churches equally splendid in Pittsburgh and its surroundings is something Pittsburghers simply accept, but it absolutely astonishes outsiders. This one took four years to build; it opened in 1905. The architect was Akron-based William P. Ginther.
Here we see the main entrance and the top end of the improvised wooden wheelchair ramp, which looks like a Kennywood ride—perfectly safe but rather exciting.
This was originally the German parish in this part of McKees Rocks. Above we see it from the parish cemetery, which is on a hilltop overlooking McKees Rocks in Kennedy Township.
William P. Ginther also designed the adjoining rectory, which is certainly a fine place to keep one’s priests.
Father Pitt does not know the original purpose of the building that is now the Xavier Personal Care Home. It looks like a work from the 1920s or 1930s, executed in the storybook fantasy Gothic that was popular then. Was it a convent for the sisters who taught at the parish school? Perhaps a parishioner will enlighten us.