St. Michael Catholic Church was established in June 1953 by Bishop Ireton to address the growing Catholic population in Annandale, VA. From 1951 until the formal establishment of St. Michael Parish, a Sunday mass was celebrated in Annandale Elementary School’s cafeteria for the 125 original parishioners. Each week new parishioners appeared. Fr. Scannell was a visionary, who was able to foresee the urban sprawl that would happen in Fairfax County over the next 50 years.
The architectural design was revolutionary, incorporating an octagonal structure with a dome on top. Directly under the dome was the altar, with 11 pews flanking the altar. A balcony was constructed for additional seating. This design allowed the celebrant to face the congregation and afforded each worshiper with an unobstructed view. The new church was dedicated on November 26, 1960.