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St. Athanasius Church lights up for Christmas

It was an evening of holiday delight in Bensonhurst as St. Athanasius Church (2154 61st Street) lit up the exterior of its larger-than-life building at a Christmas lighting ceremony held on Sunday, December 11.

Church staff, local elected officials and volunteers where there to join community members for the spectacular ceremony.

The well-attended evening featured a tree lighting, special guests and an extra special visit from Santa himself.

According to parish history, provided on St. Athanasius’ website, the church was originally founded in 1913 on 62nd Street by Father Eugene Donnelly. The story reads:

Thanks to the support and sacrifice of area families, the website state, the first parish church was built less than a year later.

Building continued through the Great Depression as a school, community center and convent were added to the parish. By the late 1950s, it became clear that the little church, as it was affectionately known, was no longer big enough to handle the parish’s needs.  A new church was needed.  In 1961, our magnificent current church was built and finished in 1963.

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