Father Harold Purcell, founder of The City of St. Jude, came to Montgomery, Alabama in 1934. His dream was to create a “center for the religious, charitable, educational and industrial advancement of the Negro people.” He built a church and school structure in 1938, as well as a social center in 1939. The money to build The City of St. Jude was raised entirely through small donations from people throughout the country. This support was crucial to building a new school in 1947 and hospital in 1951.
St. Jude Catholic Hospital was the first integrated hospital in the southeast. The hospital served tens of thousands of blacks, poor whites and other disenfranchised citizens of Alabama’s capital.
Although Father Purcell died in 1952, his vision still lives on today through St. Jude Catholic Church, St. Jude Social Services, St. Jude Apartments and Father Purcell Memorial Exceptional Children’s Center.
Who We Are:
To thousands of underprivileged families, we are a helping hand in meeting their most basic human needs. To children who are developmentally disabled, we are nurturers, protectors and comforters. To the senior residents, we are a safe, affordable haven and community.
Why We Do It:
The City of St. Jude was founded on Father Harold Purcell’s vision of providing spiritual, social, health and educational enrichment that transcend race, sex, religious affiliation and national origin. It is our mission to see all people—from the poor in resources to the poor in spirit—prosper. We believe that every family we feed, every child we care for and every soul we comfort is food, care and comfort unto Christ himself.
How We Do It:
The City of St. Jude functions through the donations and volunteer efforts of generous patrons all over the world. Their support and prayers fuel our daily goals and are vital to our overall mission. Without them, there is no City of St. Jude. As such, we are immensely grateful to them and invite you to be a part of our family.
Where We Do It:
Physically, The City of St. Jude is located in the heart of west Montgomery. In actuality, however, the spirit of St. Jude lives in the hearts of its gracious donors all across the globe.