Philip said to Nathaniel "Come and See"     Jesus said to Philip "Follow Me"







Parish Office
(631) 584-5454
Parish School
(631) 584-7896
Religious Ed Office
(631) 584-3204
Youth Office
(631) 862-7775
Parish Fax
(631) 862-9675

General Information about our Parish

Mass Times

Weekend Schedule

Saturday - 5:00PM

Sunday - 7:30AM
Sunday - 9:00AM
Sunday - 10:30AM
Sunday - 12 Noon


Weekday Schedule

Monday through Friday
7:30AM and 9:15AM

Saturday - 9:15AM

History of Sts. Philip and James Parish

One hundred years -- and still going! Trace the roots of our parish family from its first beginnings to this present day of over 4,200 families!

Biography of Sts. Philip and James

What does the scripture tell of these two great saints? What can we learn from our tradition?



History of Sts. Philip and James

Among the many historical sites in the town of St. James is the Parish of Sts. Philip and James. Although the present church building itself only dates back to 1962, the Parish originally began in 1907. St. James was quite different in 1907 than it is today. It was mainly made up of farms and summer cottages. The Catholic population had a mission chapel of St. Patrick located on Mt. Pleasant Road and the community would gather at a meeting hall at 55 Three Sisters Road (which is now a private residence) for Mass when a priest came through the area.

As the Catholic community grew, a parish was needed. Therefore, in 1907 Bishop Charles McDonald, the second Bishop of Brooklyn established the parish of Sts. Philip and James and appointed the first pastor, Father William Duhigg. He was also responsible for the administration of St. Patrick’s mission. (The priests of Saints Philip and James Parish attended to the faithful of St. Patrick’s community until 1952 when St. Patrick’s Church was established.) A parcel of land complete with a house was secured. While Fr. Duhigg sought the assistance of friends in Brooklyn to build a church, Mass continued to be celebrated in the house on Three Sisters Road. In 1909, the church was completed.

As the community grew in the following years a school was added in 1922 and staffed by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (their convent, later the priest’s residence, was built in 1924). In September, 1922, Mother Mary of Lourdes, Prov. Superior, Sister M. Theresa of Jesus, Sister M. Ethelreda, Sister Monica Mary, Sister M. Luminosa and Sister M. Jeanne de la Croix were the first group of sisters to teach at the new school.

In 1929, after firmly establishing the new parish and school and building a new brick building for Saint Patrick’s, Father Duhigg died. He was succeeded by Father Clarence Murphy. When the Holy Name Sisters could no longer staff the school in 1939, the Sisters of the Holy Union of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary came in to take over the work of education.

Members of the first community: Sister Mary Bernard, principal; Sr. Ruth Marie, Sr. Rose Lamb, Sr. Stephen Helen and Sr. Therese Rita. [The Sisters of the Holy Union of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary ended their teaching at Sts. Philip and James in June 1967.] This was due to the small number of members in their community. The Sisters of the Immaculate Heart replaced them. The Sisters taught for several years but declining vocations led to an all-lay staff in 1970.

By the 1950’s, the student body had outgrown the three-room school, so Fr. Murphy purchased (with his own funds) the large plot of land on Clinton Avenue. While his plans to build a new school were just beginning, Fr. Clarence Murphy died. After Fr. Murphy, Father Otto Froehlich arrived and began the present school building. Upon his death in 1957, Father Charles Carow was installed as new Pastor of our church. But, by this time all had been outgrown and a new church and school were both desperately needed.

This same year, Saints Philip and James became part of the new Diocese of Rockville Centre under Bishop Walter P. Kellenberg. As the new Diocese was being built, Father Carow completed the new school and built the new church. Currently, the school teaches 415 students (Nursery –8th Grade).

By 1970, the last year of Father Carow’s pastorate, much had happened. The Second Vatican Council was over, and the parish had risen to the challenges of living the Gospel in the late Twentieth Century. After Father Carow’s death in September of 1970, Father Richard Hendl was appointed Pastor.

During the years of Monsignor Hendel’s pastorate, he implemented the spirit and changes of Vatican II. He was collaborative and listened to many different groups. As he often said, “out of many heads comes more than one idea.” It was also during this time that the Sisters departed from the school. Sts. Philip and James School was one of the first schools in the diocese with an all-laity faculty. A vigorous Adult Education program, a teenage Folk Group and a variety of spiritual retreat opportunities also characterized the years under Monsignor Hendel’s leadership.

In June 1978, Monsignor Hendel was asked to become Pastor of St. Francis de Chantal in Wantagh and Fr. William Murphy became the sixth Pastor. Fr. Murphy built on the solid foundation and many ministries flourished. His pastorate saw the creation of the Human Services Office (now called Parish Social Ministry) and the expansion of the school to Kindergarten and the growth of our Religious Education Program (formerly CCD). Today, over 1600 students are involved in religious education and formation. The beginning of our Youth group traces its seed to Fr. Murphy’s tenure as Pastor.

In June 1988, Sts. Philip and James welcomed a new Pastor, Monsignor Charles Guarino. Msgr. Guarino spent the eleven years of his pastorate renovating the parish of Sts. Philip and James both spiritually and physically. Msgr. Guarino was active in advancing the understanding and appreciation of different faiths. His ecumenical work reflected these feelings. He encouraged unity with the religious leaders in St. James and fostered this tolerance for people of all faiths.

In 1993, through Msgr. Guarino’s efforts the Saints Philip and James Church was graced with 23 new stained glass windows and a newly restored and upgraded pipe organ. The theme of the windows is Apostolic. All twelve apostles are depicted as well as scenes from the life of Christ. Another accomplishment of Monsignor Guarino was the installation of air conditioning –to the delight of everyone! In addition, it was during this time that Sts. Philip and James welcomed a new member of the community. Raphael, (aka Raph) a wheaton terrier who showed up on the doorstep of the priests residence and decided to stay. Raph is remembered for leading the procession of the blessing of the animals on St. Francis Day and delighted all by his presence in our church.

Toward the end of 1995 the parish community joined together for a special event. All were invited to attend the groundbreaking ceremony for our new Parish Center/Priests Residence. As a parish family we also rejoiced and celebrated with Fr. Guarino as His Holiness, Pope John Paul II named him an honorary prelate with the title “Monsignor” on May 27, 1996.

Later that same year the new Parish Center/Priests Residence was completed and on September 24, 1996 was formally dedicated by Bishop John McGann. Monsignor Guarino said adieu to Sts. Philip and James Parish in June of 1999. He is presently working at the Marriage Tribunal of the Diocese of Rockville Centre as he is a member of the Canon Law Society of America.

Reverend Robert Giuntini was appointed Pastor of Saints Philip and James in June of 1999. Father Bob was very involved with having the parish discover their own Spiritual Gifts. He gave seminars on the discernment of Spiritual Gifts (both within the parish and in the diocese at large). Fr. Giuntini also instituted the Office of Spirituality. The Church also was spruced up with new carpeting and a brand new sound system. Fr. Bob refurbished the Old Church with carpeting as well, and established an area for the Office of Spirituality complete with air-conditioning, which is used today for meetings and conferences. Unfortunately as he was to begin his fourth year as Pastor he had a stroke and was unable to complete his term as Pastor.

Reverend Brian McNamara was called in to become our temporary administrator. Father Brian helped the parishioners during this transition period. In March of 2003, Bishop William Murphy appointed Father Brian as our new Pastor. This officially took place on June 25, 2003. Father Brian J. McNamara was formally installed as the 9th Pastor of Saints Philip and James in the fall of 2003. Father Brian was made a Monsignor in the spring of 2007. At that same time, Father Brian was asked by Bishop Murphy to become the next Priest Personnel director of the diocese.

For over a year, Monsignor Brian had to hold two positions -- as pastor of our parish and as director of Personnel. At the same time, Monsignor Brian put into place the wonderful programs to honor the parish's centennial year. Preachers and lecturers marked the year-long celebration along with a pilgrimage to Rome! In addition, Monsignor Brian raised over 1.5 million dollars in a capital campaign to bring improvements to both our Church and the Old Church.

In June of 2008, Bishop Murphy appointed Father Tony Stanganelli as our tenth pastor of Saints Philip and James. Father boasts of being the oldest pastor to have been appointed to our Church. He began to implement the vision of Monsignor Brian in overseeing the renovations of the Old Church (restored stained glass windows, new doors new sound system, new carpeting and painting) and the additions to the new Church (a new elevator, new carpeting and  painting, and new steps and ramps for the front of the Church.

Biography of Sts. Philip and James

Feast Day: May 3rd

Philip was born in Bethsaida, Galilee, and may have been a disciple of Saint John the Baptist. He is mentioned as one of the Apostles in the lists of Matthew, Mark and Luke and in the Acts of the Apostles. He is mentioned only in John’s gospel in the New Testament, where he has the gift of raising the questions everyone else is afraid to ask, and appears to be a careful, level-headed man.

Philip was called by Jesus Himself on the day after Saints Peter and Andrew and began his evangelizing efforts by bringing Nathaniel (a.k.a. Bartholomew) to Jesus. Philip also shows us a bit about how to evangelize: When Nathaniel asks, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” He appeals for a personal inquiry:“Come and see.”

Philip was present at the miracle of the loaves and fishes, when he engaged in a brief dialogue with the Lord, and was the Apostle approached by the Hellenistic Jews from Bethsaida to introduce them to Jesus. Just before the Passion, Jesus answered Philip’s request to show them the Father, but no further mention of Philip is made in the New Testament beyond his listing among the apostles awaiting the Holy Spirit in the Upper Room.

According to tradition, he preached in Greece and was crucified upside down at Hierapolis in Phrygia under Emperor Domitian, (c. 80 AD). Philip’s relics were taken to Rome and placed in the Basilica of the Twelve Apostles, where an ancient inscription records that it was originally dedicated to Saints Philip and James.

James, the son Alphaeus and Mary, is named in the same lists of Apostles in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and in Acts 1:13 is one of the other apostles in the Upper Room in Jerusalem after Christ’s Ascension. James is mentioned as one of the “brothers” (parthenos) of the Lord with Joseph, Simon, and Jude and is called the “brother of the Lord” (most likely meaning a first cousin) in Galatians 1:19. It was to James that Peter wanted the news of his miraculous escape transmitted (Acts), and James seems to have been regarded as the head of the primitive Church of Jerusalem. He was the one who suggested that only four Jewish practices be imposed on Gentile Christians (Acts 15:13-21), beginning this statement with the words,“It seems good to the Holy Spirit and to us….”Paul reported to him and sought his approval several times.

This James seems to be the James of the Epistle of James who opens the letter by calling himself“servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,” which may indicate it was an official Church title; James uses the tone of authority of one well known in the Church and accustomed to wielding authority.

Traditionally, James is believed to be the son of Alphaeus, the same James called “the brother of the Lord,” the James who speaks with the voice of authority in the early Church; many modern scholars, however, hold that there may have been two men named James, one the son of Alphaeus and one of the Twelve, and the other“the brother of the Lord” and author of the epistle. Among the reasons cited is that James speaks of the Apostles in the past tense and does not identify himself as an Apostle.

The name of “James the Less” is usually applied to James the son of Alphaeus, because of the reference in Mark 15:40, where he is called “James the Less” or “James the Younger.” According to the converted Jew Hegesippus, a 2nd century ecclesiastical historian, James was thrown from the pinnacle of the Temple in Jerusalem by the Pharisees and then stoned to death about the year 62 AD. The contemporary Jewish historian Josephus records that the bishop James was stoned to death. This James is also known as “the Just.” Eusebius contended that the catastrophes that later struck Jerusalem were a punishment for their treatment of one“who was most righteous of men.”

In art since the 15th century, Saint Philip is portrayed as an apostle holding a long cross, or staff with a small cross on it which resembles a ceremonial object rather than the instrument of his crucifixion. Saint James is depicted in art as facially similar to Jesus, whose cousin he is said to have been.

Philip is the patron of hatters, pastry chefs and Uraguay. James is the patron of the dying due to his deathbed forgiveness of his murderers.

The feast of James may have been joined to that of Philip after the joint dedication of the basilica in Rome to their honor.



Directions to Sts. Philip and James Church

From the West:

From the Port Jefferson Ferry:

From the South or East: