St. Ann Parish and School have proudly served the spiritual, educational and social needs of families throughout northern Delaware since 1887.
1868 - St. Ann Church was established to meet the religious needs of the Catholic community in Wilmington’s Highlands and Forty Acres neighborhoods. Originally, the church was named the Parish of St. James because it was established on the Feast of St. James. Not only did we have a different name, but also a different location on Lovering Avenue.
1887 - The B&O Railroad came to Wilmington and ran so close to the church that the church was forced to relocate. Vicar General, Very Reverend John Lyon's funded the relocation of the church to its current location at Gilpin Ave. and Union St. Father Lyon's generous contribution was commemorated by renaming the parish after his mother, Ann – also the name of the mother of Mary, Mother of God.
1899 - The Franciscan Sisters founded St. Ann School. There was one class for each grade from first through eighth grades and the Sisters staffed the entire school. Fittingly, St. Ann’s built a new convent in 1910 to house the Sisters.
1969 - Monsignor John Corrigan led the development of a new gymnasium and Social Hall.
1995 – St. Ann’s added more classrooms and meeting space.
Over the years, St. Ann parish and school have blended the best elements of the past with those of the present day. This is evident in the architecture, curriculum and social fabric of the parish and school. While the Franciscan Sisters are no longer at St. Ann’s, the Catholic faith and traditions are still at the core of our curriculum. St. Ann school still has one class for each grade as it did in 1898, but the school has added both Kindergarten and Pre-Kindergarten 3 & 4 programs. Additionally, SMART Boards replaced blackboards and Spanish, Music and Art are part of the core curriculum. Before-Care, After-Care and athletic programs that include basketball, volleyball and tennis and more keep the St. Ann campus bustling from early morning until evening.