Like most metropolises in the United
States, Cleveland’s population is quite a mixture of ethnic
Catholics, primarily from Western and Eastern Europe. Due to
the modernist changes made after Vatican II, a handful of
faithful from the Cleveland area sought to remain faithful to
traditional Roman Rite.
For years this remnant in Cleveland
celebrated Mass in a rented public school building with the
help of many local and regional traditional priests.
In 1982, a former Protestant church at W.
48th Street and Franklin Avenue in Cleveland was rented for
the celebration of the Mass. With the guidance of several
traditional priests, Fr. Roger Sullivan founded St. Peregrine
Chapel. After seeking the counsel of Archbishop Lefebvre, Fr.
Sullivan left the relative comfort of the Camden diocese in
New Jersey to become the pastor of the fledgling parish in
In August 1983, the church on W. 48th
Street was sold without warning, and so the parish had 30 days
to find a new home. Fr. Sullivan was able to locate a former
Protestant church and rectory in Westlake (a suburb west of
Cleveland), which remains the chapel building to this day.
On October 24, 1991, Fr. Roger Sullivan
passed away, and fulfilling his wishes, the parishioners
requested that the priests of the SSPX take over the chapel.
Over the past decade, attendance at St.
Peregrine’s has grown to the point that 2 Sunday Masses are
required to accommodate the faithful, though even this
arrangement is not sufficient to meet the growing numbers,
which presently averages nearly 200 persons.