The Shrine Of The Little Flower
History of our parish (cont.)
Fr. Joseph Donald Fuller was appointed
the third pastor of Shrine of the Little Flower on March 1, 1969. He
had just completed a six-year pastorate at St. Joseph's Midland. His
sudden death on May 9, 1969, was a shock to the parish.
Cardinal Shehan appointed Fr. John V. Ballard to succeed Fr. Fuller on June 14, 1969. Ordained in 1944, Fr. Ballard had served at Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., St. Mary's in Hagerstown and as pastor at both Corpus Christi Church and St. Bernard's in Baltimore.
On October 18, 1970, Cardinal Shehan invested Fr. Ballard as a Domestic Prelate with the title of Monsignor.
Msgr. Ballard retired in 1992 and died on February 15, 1992.
Fr. Michael J. Orchik was appointed by Archbishop William Keeler as the fifth pastor of Little Flower in March, 1992. Fr. Mike had just completed his first pastorate at Sr. Rose of Lima in Brooklyn. His first assignment after his ordination in 1973 was as associate pastor at St. Patrick's in Fells Point, and later he served as associate pastor at Sacred Heart of Mary Church in Graceland Park.
Fr. Mike brought an energetic preaching style to the Shrine, and is a strong supporter for the school. He was assisted by Fr. Restrepo and later by Fr. Richard Bozzelli.
As the number of parishioners continued to decrease and the shortage of priests became an even greater challenge for the Church, the lay people of the parish continued to provide key leadership. Since 1997, Fr. Mike has been the only full-time priest on staff. He has been ably assisted by Fr. James Miles, and Fr. Thomas Bauernfeind, who have celebrated funerals, weekend Masses, and hear confessions. Father Bauernfeind passed away in January of 2003.
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