The roots of St. Pius X Parish were planted in 1953 when Monsignor Charles M. Smith of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland began a Mission in what then was the sparsely populated Cedar Mill area. Originally, this was known simply as the Cedar Mill Mission. The Mission had no church or other building to call its own and mass was conducted at the Leedy Grange Hall on Saltzman Road. On May 29, 1954, while still borrowing space from the Grange, the Cedar Mill Mission was renamed the St. Pius X Mission in honor of the canonization of Pope Pius X which was announced in Rome on that day.
In the fall of 1960, nineteen first and second graders began their school year in a makeshift classroom in the church. The principal of the tiny school was Sister Josepha of the Sisters of St. Mary of Oregon.
Four years of temporary arrangements for the tiny but growing school followed before the first part of the present school building was built and Archbishop Howard dedicated it on April 23, 1964.
During the summer of 1954 the original church (now called the "old church") was completed on a six acre site fronting Saltzman Road. The first mass was held on August 15, 1954. Cathedral priests took turns coming out to the building to say mass until the summer of 1955. On June 10, 1955 the Mission was ended and the Parish of St. Pius X was established with Father Joseph M. McMahon appointed as the first Pastor. In the following years, the Parish acquired acreage from adjacent landowners and expanded to its present eleven acre size.
Since its first days, the parish has been growing. In 1957 the parish had 200 registered families. Growth was initially slow, but by the mid 1970s the original church building clearly was inadequate and so planning was begun for the present church. The church was completed in 1980 and was dedicated by Archbishop Cornelius Power on the anniversary date of the canonization of St. Pius X. The Community Center was completed in 1999 and was dedicated by Archbishop John Vlazny. The Smoluch Gymnasium and renovations to McMahon Hall and the Education Center were completed in 2011.
With the steady growth, there has been a steady need for new buildings and staff and thus a need for capital funding. As the parish has grown, so too have its many ministries and the needs of the community. Fortunately, parish members have created a tradition of generosity both in terms of their effort in supporting the many parish activities and in terms of contributions, which have allowed the parish to grow successfully. In the early 1990s the Vision of Ministry campaign was able to fund the expansion of the rectory and the school.
For a parish that began as a small mission less than 60 years ago, St. Pius X has accomplished a great deal. These accomplishments are the results of the vision and hard work of our pastors and parishioners who have had the imagination and faith to dedicate themselves to work of building community in Christ. St. Pius X Parish in Portland Oregon is a very good place to call home, and this website is your guide on the internet to welcome you home.