Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church
OLPH strives to care for its communities’ needs and help its congregates grow in faith and charity.
Our Lady of Perpetual Help (OLPH) Church is situated in Tyrells, a parish in the Diocese of St. John’s-Basseterre. It oversees three worshiping communities: OLPH in Tyrells, Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Willikies, and Good Shepherd in Sea View Farm.
In the mid-1800s, after slavery was abolished, the island’s Catholic population increased significantly due to an influx of indentured laborers from the Madeira Islands. By 1869, the first Catholic Church was established in St John’s to cater to this concentrated Catholic community.
The Tyrells church was constructed in 1932 to provide Catholics scattered island wide with a closer worship center. Initially seen as an extension of St. Joseph’s Parish, it wasn’t until 1958 that OLPH gained recognition as a separate parish.
OLPH Church has long supported its community’s water needs. Historically, a 39,000-gallon cistern built in 1932 served the congregation and nearby Swetes and Tyrells communities. When maintenance challenges arose, the church shifted to a 700-gallon tank. However, this proved inadequate with ongoing droughts and heightened hygiene needs during the pandemic. OLPH is fundraising to enhance and enlarge the cistern, targeting a 5,500% capacity increase.
The Mill Reef Fund has donated annually to the church and in recent years has helped finance replacing the parish roof and floor tiles, painting the church, and installing new gutters.