On October 10, 1972, Bishop Paul F. Tanner, Bishop of the Diocese of St. Augustine, established Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish on twelve acres along Route A1A in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. Monsignor T. Leo Danaher was appointed the founding pastor. Seventy-three Catholic families served as the core of the parish and the first Mass was celebrated on Christmas Eve, 1974.
In 1979, a parish recreation center was constructed and named after contractor Carroll Browning. Much of the growth of the parish facilities was supplemented by voluntary labor and materials and gifts provided by the parishioners.
An Education Building was built in the 1980’s. In the early 1990’s, the church and the rectory were remodeled, and in 1996, a beautiful Cultural Center was built.
In 1999, Monsignor Danaher and Bishop Snyder commemorated another milestone for the parish with the dedication of Palmer Catholic Academy of Our Lady Star of the Sea. On the occasion of the dedication of the new school, Bishop Snyder pointed out that the new parish school represented the efforts of the entire parish community and was an “opportunity for all parishioners of Our Lady Star of the Sea to share in something of lasting value: the education and religious formation of children.”
That same year Monsignor Danaher retired with the loving good wishes of his parish community. During his tenure, the parish had grown from 73 to more than 1,850 families. Msgr. Danaher passed away on Tuesday, November 25, 2003.
Monsignor Daniel B. Logan came to Our Lady Star of the Sea Parish in August, 1999 as the church’s second pastor. He brought with him the expertise in organization and education he gained as both President of Bishop Kenny High School from 1970 to 1989 and as pastor of Holy Family Catholic Church from 1974 to 1999. He introduced state-of-the-art computer programs for parish data and financial records, as well as a parish website, which brought Our Lady Star of the Sea parish into the 21st century.
Monsignor Logan launched a $1.5 million capital fund campaign to construct a Media Center for Advanced Learning at Palmer Catholic Academy. He oversaw its design and development of the high-tech computer lab with more than 30 learning stations featuring Internet access and cutting-edge educational software, an extensive library with more than 7,000 volumes, including a comprehensive collection of audio-visual resources, a reading center to help students attain higher reading levels, art and music facilities to help educate the complete child, and audio-video production facilities. Bishop Victor Galeone and Monsignor Logan dedicated the 7,000 square foot Media Center for Advanced Learning at Palmer Catholic Academy on December 21, 2001.
Since 1999 the parish has grown from 1,850 families to more than 2,900 families. To accommodate this growth, Monsignor Logan expanded the church to include 700 additional seats. A gathering area was also added in the main entrance of the church. The redesigned parking lot accommodates 400 cars.
Msgr. Daniel B. Logan retired on July 1, 2013 and Msgr. Keith R. Brennan is the newest Pastor of Our Lady Star of the Sea.