Multimedia Essay | St. Patrick Re-Opening 2024

Hundreds of parishioners, supporters and community members filled St. Patrick Church, Hubbard, Ohio for the Mass of Blessing on their parish feast day, March 17, 2024. Sunday’s Mass was the first at St. Patrick since the church was forced to close its doors three years ago on January 18, 2021 after a devastating fire caused millions in damages to the interior and exterior of the building. The parish, which dates back more than 150 years, had been celebrating Mass in the parish center.

Bishop of the Diocese of Youngstown, David J. Bonnar, presided along with over a dozen concelebrating priests including Pastor Fr. Michael Swierz. Bishop Bonnar obtained and donated a relic of St. Patrick to the parish for the reopening of the church in Hubbard. The reliquary was provided by two priests who also grew up in the parish, Fr. John-Michael Lavelle and Fr. Michael Balash. The relic was carried by a deacon in the entrance procession and sat in a place of honor during the Mass. At the end of the Mass, Bishop Bonnar blessed the faithful with the relic.

After the 2021 fire, many parishioners from other churches across the diocese and the Mahoning Valley sent donations and prayers. Parishioners also helped clean, restore, construct and move items back into the church. For more information on events at St. Patrick Church in Hubbard go to their website

The following outlets have carried stories about the fire and reopening of St. Patrick’s Parish:

Scroll down to see photos shared by staff of the Diocese of Youngstown, The Catholic Echo, and St. Patrick Parish. Additional coverage will be added to this page as submitted. Members of the media can contact Dennis Biviano, Press Relations and Media Specialist: 330-744-8451 x320.

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Meagen Farrell

Meagen Farrell is an author, trainer, and woodworker who lives with her husband and boys in Northeast Ohio. She serves as the Communications Manager for the Diocese of Youngstown to help Catholics of all ages to grow in faith, love and charity. Her personal hobbies include reading, swimming and supporting local businesses. Before transitioning to religious education, she spent most of her career in the field of adult basic education, helping fellow educators find a balance between face-to-face and digital instruction. Her best known publication is "Teaching Adults: A GED Test Resource Book" by New Readers Press. She is currently certified in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd (CGS) levels I, II & III. Meagen earned her BA in Religion from Oberlin College, Certificate in Distance Education from Penn State University, MA in Theology and Religious Studies from John Carroll University, and is currently pursuing her PhD in Educational Technology at Kent State University.
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