St. Pius X Catholic Parish was established in 1955 to serve the faithful in Mountlake Terrace, by Archbishop Thomas Connolly of the Seattle Archdiocese. The first pastor was Fr. Laurence O’Larey. As part of the vision, the parish school bearing the same name was opened in the Fall of 1956. Its first faculty was staffed by the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Sister Mary of the Divine Heart served as the first principal. The Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary were dedicated to provide a Catholic education and bring the love of Jesus Christ to their students. Their love, care, and compassion were instilled in the hearts and souls of young people. The school opened with 200 students in grades one through five. In subsequent years, grades six through eight were added with the plan to expand the school to include eleven classrooms and a gym.
Over the years, as many parish schools experienced, faculties staffed by various orders of sisters dwindled. Four of the Sisters of Charity continued to teach at the school until 1999 when they retired to their mother house in Dubuque, Iowa. A photograph of the founding Sisters is displayed in the main school office. With the parish convent no longer providing housing for the sisters, the convent was renovated to accommodate the needs of the school. The main level of the convent building was remodeled and reconfigured for a front office waiting area, secretary office, and nurse’s station. The other rooms were modified to a principal’s office, copy room, parent club room, supply room, and kitchen adjacent to the faculty room. A large brick wall that divided the Sister’s patio was replaced with a planter box. A four foot statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary is prominently placed at the north side of the courtyard, visible to the school community.
When a permanent church was constructed, the former parish church originally located at the south end of the school building until 1983 was made into a multi purpose room. The former church was redesigned to serve as a multi-purpose social hall, lunchroom and gym. The new free standing church building was constructed in the lot adjacent just south of the school. For the past 36 years, Fr. Sean Fox has been the pastor, and as all former pastors and principals over the years, has been an adamant supporter of Catholic Schools. The school continues to carry on the rich traditions of years past. At St. Pius X Catholic School the vision and philosophy reflect the dedication for students to obtain a Catholic education.
Who is St. Pius X, our patron saint?
Giuseppe Melchiorre Sarto (1835-1914) became Pope Pius X in 1903. He defended the notion of separation of church and state, urged Christians to take a greater part in social affairs and politics, labored for peace, and encouraged daily reading of the bible and daily reception of Holy Communion, especially children. He was canonized on May 29, 1954.