The St. Ann faith community was established in 1905 on Havermans Avenue by Father Gabriel Korkemaz, who was visiting the Maronites in Troy NY. In 1909, a new pastor arrived. Rev. Stephen Korkemaz was a vigorous young man, filled with faith. In 1912, Fr. Korkemaz moved the community to a larger but temporary site on Hill Street while preparations were being made for a permanent site Fourth Street.
The congregation of St. Ann flourished here during the 37 year pastorate of Monsignor Stephen. In 1936, Monsignor Stephen summoned his nephew to substitute for him while he went home to Lebanon. Father Paul remained at St. Ann’s except for a temporary pastorate in Akron, Ohio. In 1947, Monsignor Stephen decided to return permanently to Lebanon and Father Paul became pastor of St. Ann’s. In 1957, Father Paul embarked on a trip home to Lebanon during which time Fr. Joseph Keyrouz, a native son of the parish, took over. Father Paul returned in 1950. Tragically, fire struck the church building on October 5, 1959.
During the winter of 1959-60, construction of a new church began on the property adjacent to the former church. The site was originally an outdoor shrine to St. Ann. The architectural firm of Harrison and Mero, was retained, along with the Machnick Construction Company. The construction was completed in 1961 with the blessing of St. Ann’s Church.
Father Paul remained as pastor until his retirement in 1976. Under his pastorate, the church grew and flourished, including several vocations to the priesthood. One of those was Father Joseph F. Kaddo, who was ordained to the priesthood by Archbishop Francis M. Zayek on October 7, 1972. He was later ordained a Chorbishop on January 4, 1998.
Upon his retirement in 1976, Rev. John Korkemaz, Father Paul’s cousin, assumed the duties of pastor at St. Ann’s. He remained there un 1978 when he was transferred to Springfield, MA. During the period from 1978 to 2001, several priests were assigned to care for the parish. They included Fathers Tom Coover, Donald Thomas, Paul Mooradd, Hares Zogheib, Jack Morrison and David Mickiewicz.
On April 2, 2001, Bishop Stephen Hector Doueihy assigned a newly ordained priest, Father Elie G. Kairouz, to oversee the St. Ann community. Father Kairouz was subsequently named pastor on June 30, 2004, by Bishop Gregory John Mansour and led the parish with great dedication and a vision for the future. Under his guidance and with full approval of the parishioners, Fr. Kairouz set out to obtain a larger church for the community.
In December 2005, St. Ann’s acquired the former Third Street Methodist/Episcopal Church, across the river from Troy, in Watervliet, NY. The Church, constructed in 1850 had been boarded up for nearly 40 years. Father Kairouz set in motion a plan to restore the Church to its original magnificence but as a Maronite Catholic Church. In 2006, an official application was submitted to New York State Office of Parks and Historic Preservation, to have the property recognized. In January 2006 (check dates), New York State recognized the Church and Parsonage and placed it on both the NYS and National listing of Historical Sites. In May of that same year, the parish applied for a NYS grant to restore the historical facade and stained glass windows. The grant was awarded in October of that year.
In June 2010 Rev. George Bouchaaya, M.L.M was assigned to serve the parish, and on May 18, 2013 with great celebration St. Ann Maronite Catholic Church- Watervliet was dedicated by Bishop Gregory John Mansour. In January 2015 Bishop Gregory assigned Chorbishop John D. Faris as administrator and Rev. Elias Khalil Parochial Vicar. Our journey continues with Rev. Alaa Issa who was assigned as administrator of St. Ann in November 2015.