Rev. Dr. Thomas F. St. Clair, 70, of Connellsville, passed away and into the Church Triumphant on Thursday, November 18, 2021 at home with his family gathered around him. “Dr.Tom” was called by God to be a United Methodist Pastor and District Superintendent in the Connellsville District before retiring. Tom served the Western PA Annual Conference with integrity and love for all people.
Born July 30, 1951, in Brownsville, PA, he was the son of the late Herb and Betty St. Clair. He was married to Susan K. Porter, on May 22, 1971 at Taylor United Methodist Church and they celebrated 50 years of marriage this year. Tom graduated with Bachelors degrees in Science and Education and Masters degrees in Education and School Administration, all from California State College and a Master of Divinity from United Theological Seminary, where he also earned his Doctor of Ministry degree.
Tom began his career as a teacher and principal in Beth Center, Trinity and Bethel Park School Districts. He also taught English as an adjunct professor at California University and Westmoreland County Community College.
Tom then served as pastor at: Amanda UMC in Ohio, and in 1981 began his pastoral ministry in Western PA , serving at Fairview/Nebo UMC and Belle Vernon First UMC before being appointed as Connellsville District Superintendent. In 2003, after six years as a DS, he was appointed to serve as pastor of Irwin First UMC. Tom retired in 2017 after serving the church faithfully for many years.
Tom was community-minded and loved the people he served and led. Tom was named Belle Vernon’s Man of the Year and served the Belle Vernon Area School District as a school board member for many years. He was involved with and served in the Rotary Club, the Belle Vernon and Irwin Area Ministeriums, and other organizations.
Especially, Tom’s treasure resided in his marriage and family. Tom loved his “special angel” wife of 50 years, Susan. Tom’s love for her was evident to all. That love carried Tom into eternity, knowing that his wife was by his side every step of the way.
In addition to his wife, Tom is survived by his children, Rev. Jeffrey (Jennifer) St. Clair of St. Johns, FL, Jennifer (Eric) Martin of Dunbar, PA, Jamie (Casey) Davis of Belle Vernon, PA; sisters Peggy (Warren) Liberatore and Cindy (Robert) Rager; a niece, nephew and many cousins. “Pappy” is also survived by his eight precious grandchildren Aaron, Alayna, and Abigail St. Clair; McKenzie and Logan Martin; and Katelynn, Braden and Tommy Davis.
Friends will be received on Sunday, Nov. 21 from 2 to 4 P.M. and 7 to 9 P.M. in the Ferguson Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 700 Broad Avenue, Belle Vernon, 724-929-5300. A Celebration of Life will be held on Monday, NOv. 22 at 11 A.M. in Belle Vernon First United Methodist Church, 200 State Street, Belle Vernon, with the Revs. Jeffrey St. Clair, Steve Lamb and Ryan Washabaugh officiating. Interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Tom’s memory to Jumonville Camping and Retreat Center. (https://jumonville.org/