Parish History



November 19, 1900, Rev. J. Alphonse Frederick, the first pastor of Saint Margaret Parish, purchased three acres of land in Bel Air, Maryland for the sum of $3000, using money which was bequeathed to him by his mother, Anna Margaret (Hild) Frederick. Five years later, this land became the location of the Church of Saint Margaret.

  • Following are some facts and significant events in the
    history of Saint Margaret Catholic Parish, and the development of Saint Mary Magdalen Mission as
    a mission of Saint Margaret.

  • Fr. J. Alphonse Frederick was ordained a Priest, December 18, 1874.
  • On May 1, 1905 the cornerstone was laid and volunteers helped build the
    Church. The Church was named in honor of Fr. Frederick's mother's
    patron saint, Saint Margaret, a 3rd Century martyr. Mass was first
    celebrated in the Chapel on October 1, 1905. This was the first
    known Celebration of a Catholic mass in Bel Air. The original
    church, presently our Adult Education Center, was used for
    Eucharistic celebration until 1969 when the new Church was finished.
  • The original Church was remodeled to provide offices for the staff of
    Saint Margaret until 1995 when the new two story building was
    completed. The new building now provides staff offices and
    Pre-school and Kindergarten facilities on the first floor.
  • The original Church now also houses the Archbishop William D.
    Borders Library. The Adult Education Center was dedicated on
    May 13, 1995 by His Eminence William Cardinal Keeler.
    The Library was dedicated in the Fall of 1995.
  • A Mass of Dedication was celebrated on April 20, 1969, by His
    Eminence Lawrence Cardinal Shehan to consecrate the present
    house of worship for the Church of Saint Margaret.
  • The altar is a five ton piece of marble carved in the shape of a table.
    Within the altar is the relic of Pignatianus, a holy Roman martyr of the
    third century. The tabernacle of the Blessed Sacrament is located in the
    Chapel at the rear of the Church.
  • On May 13, 1995, ground was broken for the new Mary Magdalen
    Mission Center on Churchville Road, which has become the
    mission church of Saint Margaret. It was dedicated on
    April 12, 1997 by William Cardinal Keeler. A single
    multi-purpose building seats 600 for Mass and 300 for
    banquets. The complex also includes an Education Center/Saint   
    Margaret Middle School which was
    completed in the Spring and 
    opened in the Fall of 2001.
  • On September 20, 2001 the Saint Mary Magdalen Education center
    was dedicated by Bishop William C. Newman, Eastern Vicar
    of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The education center consists
    of nine classrooms, a library/multimedia center and a
    gymnasium. The building houses Saint Margaret Middle School
    (grades 6-8) during the day and Religious Education and
    Continuing Education classes at other times.


141 Hickory Avenue
Bel Air, Maryland 21014

1716 Churchville Road
Bel Air, Maryland 21015

205 Hickory Avenue
Bel Air, Maryland 21014

1716A Churchville Road
Bel Air, Maryland 21015