By Angelia Bills

Ready to Serve: The St. Alphonsus Rock Church “Grillz to Glory volunteer team includes (back row) Lois Green, Helene LaBerte, Pat Pou, Father Steve Benden, Carol Powell, Lorenzo Poindexter, (front row) Clara Washington and  Veronica Poindexter.

St. Alphonsus Liguori Catholic Church, affectionately known as “The Rock” Church, has served as a beacon of hope and fellowship in the St. Louis community on the corner of Grand Blvd. and Cook Ave. for over 150 years. The Rock is unique because it is a large African American Catholic Parish with a prominent membership and a rich history of service to the Community.

Throughout the years, the Rock has partnered with several community organizations, including the Urban League, on initiatives to serve the low-income residents, increase public safety and enhance the quality of life in the surrounding neighborhoods. Led by Father Steve Benden, the Rock is a Redemptorist Parish whose parishioners are dedicated to serving the poor and most abandoned. 

Every Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., The Rock Church partners with the Urban League to bring “Grills to Glory,” a public safety initiative that creates a safe space for children and families to receive free refreshments and play games. “We provide a safe haven for people in the neighborhood and for those who want to come worship with us,” said Father Benden.

In addition to a traditional liturgy (church service) at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday, the Rock Church has an HIV, Health & Social Service Ministry, Peace & Justice Ministry, and a Food Pantry. Each year, the Church also sponsors a Back to School Fair and Christmas Giveaway.

Church Mission 

St. Alphonsus Liguori “Rock” Catholic Church is a Redemptorist Parish

happily welcoming all God’s children as we worship our Lord

in an African American style. We strive to joyfully preach, teach and live the Good News of Jesus Christ. For more information about St. Alphonsus, please visit

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