History of St. Joseph

"In the early 1900s, Big Bear Valley Catholics traveled either t o Victorville or San Bernardino for liturgies. To properly minister to the spiritual needs of the community, St. Joseph Parish was formed in 1921. Dedication of its new church took place on July 19, 1931.

Increasing tourism and growing numbers of local parishioners necessitated many changes over the ensuing years. The North Shore property, site of the present church, was purchased in 1964 and a rectory was built at that location in 1970. The old church was moved to the site in 1974 with classrooms added soon after.

With the arrival of the pastor, Fr. Edmond G. ""Ned"" 0""Donnell, came major renovations. By 1982, however, the church was again bursting at the seams. With the launching of a building program, St. Joseph Parish became a beehive of activity. Parishioners and weekenders alike responded enthusiastically and generously. There followed five years of hard work, many disappointments, difficult decisions and many joys and triumphs as funds were raised to launch construction. On July 5, 1987, the beautiful new church was dedicated amid great pomp and ceremony, with Bishop Phillip Straling officiating.

St. Joseph's magnificent church is an outstanding example of what can be accomplished when a community dedicates their time, talents and hearts to a common labor of love."