Pastors for First 75 Years
There have been 18 pastors associated with St. Francis de Sales in 150 years, only 5 Pastors since we have been designated an independent incorporated parish 50 years ago. Here is a brief introduction of the early ones at St. Ignatius & St. Stephens with oversight of St Francis De Sales Mission.
1865-1873 Pastorate: Rev. Patrick Francis P. O’Connor, Pastor of St. Ignatius built St. Francis Church and said first Mass at 5 am on Christmas day, 1866. Died1894, Mt Savage, MD.
1873-1877 Pastorate: Rev. Gerald H. Nyssen born Jan, 1839, Holland; ordained April 1865. Noteworthy: spoke 6 languages; 3 brothers priests, only pastor to serve 2 terms; died Dec, 1908. St. Francis Mission transferred to St.Stephen’s.
1877-1878 Pastorate: Rev. Michael Stanton, born September,1847, Galway, Ireland, ordained Dec,
1873; pastor for 1 year; Noteworthy—shortest pastorate, spent final years as a Christian Brother; died Feb,1929. 1879-1897 Pastorate: Rt. Rev. Msgr. Luigi Sartori, born 1844, Grigno, Italy; ordained 1875; Noteworthy: Longest pastorate of St. Stephens first 100 years; Built their current church, rectory; kinsman to Pope Pius X; died July 1933. “At St. Francis we have the Confraternity of the Living Rosary, each member pays 5 cents month for the altar.”
1897-1909 Pastorate: Rev. William M. Clements, born Nov,1870, Rockville, MD, ordained May,1896; started the first St. Stephens jousting tournaments; died Nov, 1936.
1909-1911 Pastorate: Most Rev. John M. McNamara, born August, 1878, Baltimore, MD, ordained June, 1902, Noteworthy: appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Baltimore by Pope Pius XI December 1927, known for ordaining nearly 2,000 men to the priesthood.
1911-1922 Pastorate: Rev. Cornilius F. Dacey, no information available.
1922-1930 Pastorate: Rt. Rev. Msgr. John F. Fannon, born Oct, 1872, Mount Savage, MD, ordained Dec 1906; Noteworthy: eldest of 11 children, 3 nephews became priests, named Monsignor in 1945; died July 1948.
1930-1941 Pastorate: Rev. T. Vincent Fitzgerald, born Nov, 1891, Baltimore, MD, ordained May 1917. Noteworthy: eldest of 11 children, built the first St. Stephens School, drove the school bus, named a Monsignor in 1945; died September 1956.
To be continued next month…….. REMEMBER WE ARE ST. FRANCIS