Brief History of Peter & Paul Community Services
Over 150 years ago, in 1849, the Soulard neighborhood became
home to Sts. Peter & Paul Parish, which served the needs
of poor German immigrants. An early listing of parish clubs
and sodalities included St. Pauls Benevolent Society,
the Mens Orphan Society and the Vincent de Paul Society.
From its beginning the Soulard community has actively served
the needs of those who are less fortunate.
In the fall of 1981, a group of parishioners, seeing the
need for more shelter space in the city, approached the
parish council at Sts. Peter & Paul and asked for a
room to open a shelter. The basement of the parish hall
was chosen, and volunteers began to serve up to 20 men,
women and children each night in what became known as the
"Winter Shelter". After two years, the numbers
of people being served outgrew the space, and the shelter
was moved to the basement of the church, directly beneath
As the numbers served by the shelter grew, more volunteers
and financial support were needed. Other churches offered
help, and the shelter program became a collaborative effort
of three neighborhood churches: Trinity Lutheran Church,
St. Vincent de Paul, and Sts. Peter & Paul.
In 1984, Peter & Paul Community Services became officially
incorporated as a 501(c)3. Steve Campbell, the agencys
first executive director continues in that role today.
Over the years, several programs have been created as a
direct response to the very real needs of the homeless population
in St. Louis.
Today Peter & Paul Community Services continues to
alleviate a variety of social problems: unemployment, broken
homes, neglect, addiction, illness and the need for shelter,
food, and clothing.