St. Francis Xavier Church (SFX) began humbly on December 4, 1933 in Vancouver’s Chinatown on Princess Avenue. Established by Father Hugh Sharkey, SFM, the Fathers of the Scarboro Foreign Mission Society and the Grey Nuns of Pembroke nurtured a small community with love and God’s grace. In 1962, Fr. Peter Chow came to serve SFX as the first Chinese priest.
Our community continued to grow under the guidance of Fr. Aloysius Lou, who came to serve in 1975 as the second Chinese pastor. He opened Happy Manor to take care of seniors and led the building of a new daycare. He also invited the Sisters of The Immaculate Heart of Mary from Hong Kong to take the place of the Grey Nuns as pastoral assistants. Sr. Veronica Tang, SIHM and Sr. Agatha Poon, SIHM became the first Chinese sisters to join our community.
In 1984, St. Francis Xavier (Chinese) School was founded. With the growing families active in different buildings, Fr. Lou dreamed of one day having the church, school and daycare of St. Francis Xavier all under one roof.
Decades and even a few “homegrown” vocations later, in 2004, SFX on Princess Avenue was sold. In 2008, Fr. Lou’s vision came to fruition in the form of our current church and school buildings on Great Northern Way, complete with underground parking! In the same year, the Community of St. John the Baptist came to serve the parish with pastor Fr. John Tran, CSJB. The Congregation of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux (CST) also came to assist in pastoral ministry.