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Slocum Chapel a surprise on church tour

Sixth annual summer event visited four churches in Exeter Borough

Atty. Jan Lokuta, originator and host of the Tour of Historic Greater Pittston Churches, addresses the group at St. Anthony’s, now St. Barbara’s, in Exeter.

Richard Redmond rings the church bell at Slocum Chapel.

Sam Reggie, 87, is a parishioner of Slocum Chapel Apostolic Church.

Pastor Guy Giordano, right, and Atty. Jan Lokuta address the gathering at Slocum Chapel.

Atty. Jan Lokuta, center, at St. Barbara’s church with a portion of the group who participated in the sixth annual Tour of Historic Greater Pittston Churches.

Last Sunday’s annual Tour of Historic Pittston Churches included a pleasant surprise amongst the familiar. The sixth annual tour, conceived and hosted by Atty. Jan Lokuta, was the smallest thus far, with only four churches being visited, but, thanks to the gem that is the Slocum Chapel, it may have been one of the most memorable.

This summer’s tour concentrated on the churches of Exeter Borough. The familiar churches – St. John the Baptist on Schooley Street, St. Cecilia’s on Wyoming Avenue and St. Anthony’s on Memorial Street – have been merged into the new Parish of St. Barbara, housed at the former St. Anthony’s but utilizing St. Cecilia’s as an alternate worship site. St. John the Baptist has closed.

Slocum Chapel, at 1024 Exeter Ave., in a section known as “the patch,” was built in 1867 by the Slocum family who occupied a stately mansion across the street. Mr. Slocum’s will specified that the chapel was to remain in service to the community. The Slocums were Presbyterian.

Today, the chapel is an Apostolic church.

Pastor Guy Giordano and parishioner Mike Marancik explained the history of the chapel and answered questions. Sam Reggie, 87-year-old parishioner, was introduced and Richard Redmond demonstrated the ringing of the church bell.

The tour began at St. Cecilia’s and concluded at St. Anthony’s, now St. Barbara’s.

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