St. Joseph Church
Gretna, LA 70053
St. Joseph Catholic Church was the first church on the West Bank of Jefferson Parish. The original church, built in 1859 was a simple wooden structure where Redemptorist priests from the East Bank held mass each Sunday. The first pastor, Father Bogaerts, came in 1863. He established a school in 1866 that was continuously in operation until 1992. The present day church was built in 1926. It is a basilican plan church, with a stuccoed exterior rich in elaborate ornamentation. It has been noted as one of Jefferson Parish's finest examples of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. The interior has decorative friezes depicting the Stations of the Cross. These were hand carved by Italian sculptor Luca Arrighini from one block of Carrara marble weighing 18 tons. The sculpting was completed in 1947 and the Stations are considered some of the most beautiful in the whole Archdiocese of New Orleans.