St. Vincent de Paul School Celebrates 50 Years

Apr 25, 2014

  Saint Vincent de Paul Catholic School is celebrating its 50th anniversary this week.

Irish dancers were among those participating in the celebration in the gymnasium at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic School in Holladay.  The school began with a kindergarten class in the basement of the old parish church in Murray, and from the very first, there were more students hoping to attend than it could accommodate.

Sister Lelia O’Sullivan was part of a group of nuns from the Presentation order who came from Ireland to teach at St. Vincent’s.  She says Utah’s weather was just one of the things that took some getting used to.

“We were in our full habit and we had a veil on our heads," Sister Lelia told KUER, "and it was 100 degrees when we got off the plane.  So I was gasping for air.”

Sister Lelia made the adjustment quickly and stayed in Utah for twelve years, serving as principal of the new school before she went back to Ireland.

Seven of the sisters who were the school’s first teachers returned to Utah for the jubilee celebration.  Today, St. Vincent de Paul Catholic School has 280 students and a professional staff of 37.