It all began in Spring 1948 when Archdeacon Thomas took a coin and scraped clear the years of grime from a century old Covenanter Church window. He knew the Episcopal Mission had found a new home in the North Hills of Pittsburgh. The Covenanters stipulated the cemetery be maintained and could not sell for commercial purposes. By August 1st with a congregation of 17 people, the 1st service was held.
October 16th 1948 with 180 persons present, the church was consecrated and the name changed from Pine Creek Episcopal Mission to St. Thomas Church in the Fields. In 1950 with a small budget and a loan from the Diocese a small rectory was purchased, and as the parish grew plans were made to enlarge the building. Not long after a new rectory closer to the church was purchased and the old one sold.
In 1956 plans were drawn up and presented to the parish, ground was broken in 1958 and on June 7, 1959 the first service in the new church was held. On the 15th anniversary an art exhibit and concert was held to celebrate all the hard work and fellowship of St Hilda’s Guild (parish woman’s organization).
In 1965 a new rectory was built on the property, and 1968 brought The Chapel of the Resurrection enabling Christian burials within the church. During the next 10 years the parish struggled but in 1976, under new effective leadership, a strong lay ministry was organized and the parish became healthy again.
In 1977 the parish sold the old rectory and a new rector was called. Under his leadership the parish flourished even more. In 1989 the parish celebrated its 30th Anniversary. Each following year brought grow, enrichment and fulfillment leading to the Church’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 1999.
In 2000, renovations were made to the parish hall and Church School hall. In 2008 the parish voted to remain with the Anglican Communion and remain part of the Anglican Diocese of Pittsburgh.
In 2007 Robert Lytle, Sr. was ordained to the Deaconate and was then called to St. Thomas.
In January 2011 The Rev. Ronald J. Baillie was called, and in 2017 we changed our name to St. Thomas Anglican Church.
In 2017, The Rev. Chris Hill was presented by The Rev. Ron Baillie to be ordained a Deacon. Rev. Chris Hill joined St. Thomas as a Deacon, expanding the St. Thomas' clergy to two part time associates.
In 2018, The Rev. Chris Hill was ordained in the Anglican Church. Jon Baillie was called to become the Youth Leader at St. Thomas. His extensive counseling background and the fact that he was raised in St. Thomas made him the ideal candidate to move the youth program forward.
In January 2022, The Rev. Ronald J. Baillie, retired from St. Thomas and The Rev. Chris Hill became the Priest-in-Charge.
In July 2022, when The Rev. Chris Hill moved his family to West Virginia, St. Thomas continued the search for a new Rector. The Rev. Terrence Johnson, assisting clergy at St. Thomas, led services with the help of The Rev. Mark Brown, a Supply Priest from Butler.
On September 4, 2022, The Rev. Captain Greg Miller was called to be the Interim Rector while the church continues to search for the next Rector.
In January of 2023, our new Rector, Fr. Jay Slocum, began the next chapter at St. Thomas. After receiving his MDiv from Trinity School from Ministry in 2003, Jay was called to Church Plant in Hilton Head, SC until 2007. From 2008 to 2018, Jay served as the founding pastor and Rector of Jonah’s Call Anglican Church in the City of Pittsburgh. Fr. Jay continues to support the Children's Ministry at Church of the Ascension Anglican Church in Oakland.
Want to learn more?
When we celebrated our 70th anniversary, we drew together more information about our life together over the decades. You can learn more about our story in these video and booklets.