1905 Pioneer Avenue, Pittsburgh,
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The Formation of a New Parish
After many years of petition and
prayers, Our Lady of Loreto Parish was established by Bishop John J.
Prior to and at the time of the redevelopment of the Lower Hill District
of the city, the Brookline area experienced an influx of new people forced
to leave their homes which were razed to make way for the Civic Arena and
The people petitioned the Bishop to
establish a new parish for them because of the distance to Resurrection
Church and the overwhelming size of the Mother Parish. Hence, a new parish
was established on May 27, 1959, during the reign of His Holiness, Pope John XXIII. The new Parish was the fourth and final offspring
of Resurrection Church, the other three being St. Norbert's parish, St. Bernard's parish
and St. Pius X parish.
Most Reverend John J. Wright
Our Lady of Loreto was the first
parish in the Diocese of Pittsburgh to be established by His
Excellency, Most Reverend John J. Wright. The title
and patroness of the parish were the Bishop's personal choice. Loreto,
a town on the Adriatic Coast of Italy, is the site of a magnificent
Shrine to Our Lady. Over a million pilgrims, including many sick and
handicapped, visit the shrine every year.
Title and The Patroness of the Parish
The title "Our Lady of Loreto" is
derived from the Holy House of Loreto, located in a small town on the eastern coast
of Italy. Loreto is the site of what, until the rise of Lourdes, was the
most famous Marian shrine in the world outside of Palestine.
The Holy House, according to a
centuries old tradition, is believed to be either the original house or
a replica of the house where Our Lady was born, where the Angel Gabriel
announced to her that she was to be the Mother of God, and in which Christ
was conceived of Mary and spent His early childhood.
The tradition relates
that in May, 1291, the house was transported by angels from its original
site in Nazareth to Tersato, near Fiume, in Dalmatia: in 1294 it was again
removed by angels and carried across the Adriatic Sea to Italy, and
eventually came to rest at Loreto.
The Holy House, which now stands
within a vast domed basilica called the Santuario di Loreto, is a rectangular structure of rough stone
and brick, measuring about 30 feet by 13 feet inside. The exterior walls
have been encased in white marble beautifully carved into ornate figures
and designs. Inside, an altar stands at one end beneath the statue of Our
Lady of Loreto. The statue represents Our Lady holding the Christ-child,
both dark-skinned and both swathed in a stiff formal robe richly
Historical criticism of recent
times has indicated that the Holy House of Loreto may be only a replica
of the original house of Our Lady at Nazareth. The tradition of the
removal of the house from Nazareth to Loreto by angels is not a matter
Nonetheless, Our Lady's shrine at Loreto
is, like Lourdes, a centuries-old place of great pilgrimage and of cures and
miracles of grace. Our Lady has shown particular favor to her shrine at Loreto
and Almighty God has enriched it with His extraordinary graces and miracluous
cures granted through the intercession of His Blessed Mother. Over a
million persons visit the shrine each year.
L. Garbin - The First Pastor
Reverend Arthur L. Garbin was named
first pastor of Our Lady of Loreto. Msgr. Carl P. Hensler, S.T.D., Dean of
this area, conducted the first ceremony of installation of Father Garbin.
Prior to this assignment, Father Garbin had been Director of Saint Anthony
School for the mentally retarded in Oakmont, Pennsylvania.
Father Garbin was
responsible, through his warmth and friendliness, for the family spirit of
Loreto which is still evident in the parish. Because of his concern for
education, the school was the number one priority.
Father Arthur L. Garbin, Loreto's
first Pastor, in 1959.
Stemming from the belief that each
child should learn at his or her own pace, a non-graded system of education
was introduced, which has proven successful in every facet of teaching. Our
Lady of Loreto School opened its doors to serve as a pilot program for this
type of education on the elementary level.
Over the years, Loreto evolved
into one of the finest academic and athletic programs in the diocese, perhaps
even in the state. Whether below average, average, or above average, each
child received equal attention and was placed in a group commensurate with
his or her individual abilites.
The first Mass was celebrated on
May 31, 1959.
Years At Elizabeth Seton High School
Prior to the erection of the
church-school building, the Sisters of Charity of Elizabeth Seton High School
graciously made available the auditorium and facilities of their school for
church purposes and for religion classes and meetings. Sunday masses were
offered for the first time on May 31, 1959, the feast of the Queenship of
The following Sunday, the assistance of
Reverend Marcellus Fuller, O.F.M. Capuchin, Superintendent of Toner Institute,
Brookline, enabled the parish to schedule four masses every Sunday in the auditorium.
Marriages were celebrated in the school chapel or at Resurrection Church. Funerals
were conducted at Resurrection.
A Ladies Guild, an Ushers Club and
an Altar Boy Society were organized within a month. The Guild assumed
responsibilty for converting the auditorium for church services each weekend.
In the following months the house at 1901 Pioneer Avenue was purchased for a
The Guild sponsored a "Shower for the
Parish House." Due to the prayers and sacrifices of the parishioners, the
rectory was paid off less than a year after the purchase.
In August, 1959, Bishop Wright
authorized the parish to engage an architect to prepare plans for a
church-school building. At the time, the parish had 335 children enrolled
at Resurrection school and 100 public school pupils attending religion
classes conducted at Elizabeth Seton by the Sisters of Charity.
A baptism at Our Lady of Loreto in
A 1960 year-end report indicated there
were 800 families, including over 600 school age children, in the parish.
There had been 48 baptisms and eight marriages.
The first choir, consisting of men
only, was started in September of 1959, Walter Kenna was choir director and
Mrs. James Sands was the organist.
Also in September, plans were made to
begin training men and women of the parish to serve as helpers and teachers for
religion classes; hence the CCD program began. The CCD is a parish society in
which the laity, under the guidance of the clergy, play leading roles in
learning, living and teaching Christian Doctrine. The original classes had
enrolled 100 grade school children.
On March 16, 1960, Bishop John J. Wright
administered the sacrament of Confirmation to 66 children and three adults in
the temporary church. These confirmandi were the first to be confirmed from the
parish. May 13, 1961 marked the "First" First Communion, with a class
consisting of 65 children. Plans were made to make it a memorable one, despite
the temporary church set-up in Elizabeth Seton's auditorium.
and School Construction Begins
Preliminary plans for the building
received approval from the Diocesan Building Commission in June of 1960. The
architects, Casimir J. Pelligrini Associates of Pittsburgh, were authorized
to proceed with the working plans.
Unfortunately, test borings conducted on
the site revealed some serious problems. The site was not solid ground but a
tremendous mass of fill, dumped there over the years. There were signs of
shifting of the fill in addition to drainage and grading
Another major problem discovered was
the necessity of running the site's sanitary and storm sewers through the
woodland to Timberland Avenue, near Route 51. The sewer lines at Pioneer
Avenue were higher than the grade levels at the construction site.
continued until the spring of 1961, during which solutions to the problems
were finally decided. As a result, groundbreaking ceremonies had to be
The goundbreaking for Our Lady
of Loreto church/school was in May 1961.
Groundbreaking for the school and
temporary church took place on Trinity Sunday, May 28, 1961. Reverend Oliver
D. Keefer, pastor of the Church of the Resurrection, Father Arthur Garbin,
and representatives of all church committees participated in the traditional
Some two hundred jubilant members of the
parish attended the groundbreaking on a beautiful sunny afternoon. Excavation
and construction began the following day.
The laying of the cornerstone on
September 24, 1961.
With the new building nearing completion,
the blessing and the laying of the cornerstone took place on September 24, 1961.
Monsignor Carl P. Hensler, Dean, and Monsignor Jacob C. Shinar, along with
Father Arthur Garbin, conducted the ceremonies.
This was surely a historical
event, marking the erection of the first building in the parish. All parish
families were asked to send a medal or a family memento to be sealed in the
The new building nearing completion
in July 1962.
Selection of Sisters
for the New School
On March 27, 1962, Bishop John J. Wright
announced his selection of Sisters for the new school: the Apostles
of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, who were founded by Mother Clelia Merloni, whose cause for
beatification had already begun. The congregation numbers two thousand worldwide,
with 256 in this country.
The original teachers at Our Lady
of Loreto School in 1962.
Their ministry in the United States
includes teaching, parish ministry, special education and nursing. Worldwide
they engage in social work as well as the administration of hospitals and
orphanages. They serve in Italy, Switzerland, the United States, Brazil and
A classroom at Our Lady of Loreto
school in 1962.
In Pennsylvania, the Sisters staffed
schools in Pittsburgh, Butler, New Castle and Connellsville, as well as St.
Anthony's School for Exceptional Children in Oakmont and a similar school,
"Clelian Heights," in Greensburg. Prior to his election to the Papacy, Pope
John XXIII was the Cardinal Protector of this order.
At Loreto, the first Sisters to serve
were Sister M. Estelle, Principal and Superior, Sister M. Irene and Sister M.
Francine. The Sisters were assisted by two lay instructors, Mrs. Walter Padlo
and Mrs. John Kinevy.
Carolyn Szolis and Marion Maier outside
the new school. Pittsburgh Press photo from August 26, 1962.
Dedication Day of Our Lady of Loreto
church-school building finally arrived. On August 22, 1962, the feast of the
Immaculate Heart of Mary, the ceremonies were held. The celebrant and homilist
was the Most Reverend John J. Wright. Attendance had to be restricted due to
the limited facilities.
The Statue of Our Lady of Loreto,
which had just arrived from Italy two hours before the ceremony, stood in the
lobby and welcomed all. It was a glorious and joyous day. The entire cost
of the new building was $541,650, of which the parish assumed a debt of
From this day to the renovation of the
present church the Sunday masses were held in the gym. The daily masses,
weddings and funerals were held in the Chapel, which is presently the social
Sunday Mass was held in the
gymnasium in the absence of a permanent Sanctuary.
In the hope of terminating the temporary
church facilities, plans for a permanent church were initiated by the pastor and
church committee in early 1966. Many proposals were considered, pending
improvement of the financial status of the parish.
As time went on, the financial capabilities
of the parish grew steadily. But before plans could start, in March 1968 Father
Garbin was reassigned by Bishop Wright to Saint Michael's in Butler,
The new pastor assigned to Our Lady of
Loreto was Father Raymond A. Cercone, who came from Saint Lawrence in Hillsvale,
Pennsylvania, where he had built a church and rectory. He had also spearheaded
the building fund campaign for Saint Catherine's in Beechivew where he had been
After several months, Father Cercone
started the improvements on the church grounds. The roadway from the rectory and
convent was undertaken. A Debt Reduction Campaign was started in May of 1968. The
first Sunday of every month was Debt Reduction Sunday. His dream was to have a
The temporary sanctuary, located in the
Chapel (now the Social Hall) in 1962.
In October, 1968, the parish committee
obtained the services of the architectural firm of Belli and Belli to plan
converting the multi-purpose hall into a permanent church. In March, 1969, a new
building fund program was initiated.
J.J. McGaffin, who had built the
church-school building, was again contracted to convert the multi-purpose hall
into a permanent church. Again, parishioners attended Sunday masses at Elizabeth
Seton from May to August 3, 1969, when mass was again held at Our Lady of
Loreto. When completed, the new $80,000 house of worship was carpeted wall-to-wall
and had a seating capacity of 500.
The permanent Our Lady of Loreto Sanctuary,
dedicated on October 25, 1969.
In May of 1969, Cardinal Wright departed
for Rome to his new assignment. Bishop Vincent Leonard, who was installed as the
ninth bishop of Pittsburgh, dedicated the new church on October 25, 1969. The
mass of dedication was followed by a dinner and dance at Webster Hall.
Community Continues To Grow
In September, 1972, Father Cercone was
reassigned and a new spiritual director, Monsignor James Shanahan was assigned to
the church. A priest dedicated to the spiritual uplifting of his people, Monsignor
Shanahan mingled with the children and parishioners and quickly became a father
and friend to all. His homilies were inspiring and hard to forget, yet all felt
comfortable in his presence as if he were "one of the boys."
Monsignor Shanahan, along with a group of
totally committed parishioners, started a bingo, which provided great support for
the Church in reducing the debt. Unfortunately for the parishioners and the
church, Father Shanahan passed away suddenly on November 15, 1978.
Monsignor James Shanahan.
Father Thomas O'Neill, the assistant
pastor, took over all the duties of the parish and kept the congregation going
during that period of great loss. On June 18, 1979, Father O'Neill was assigned
to St. Luke's parish in Carnegie.
In September of 1977, Our Lady of Loreto
acquired a parish social service co-ordinator, Brother Ted Smith, a Christian
Brother. A learned man who spoke several languages, Brother Ted spent many hours
visiting the sick, comforting those in need and sometimes entertaining them with
On December 17, 1978, the parish received
a new pastor, Father Joseph Grosko, formerly a Navy Chaplain and a native of
Braddock, Pennsylvania. Father Grosko, who had a special love for the older
parishioners, quickly set up the Loreto Pioneers.
This was an organization
dedicated to the advancement of the spiritual and social needs of the senior
citizens of the parish. Their first meeting was held on October 4, 1979. Father
Grosko also founded a weekly "Dialogue and Donuts" gathering, the very first
"Family Day" celebration and the first carnival, which was held on July 20,
Our Lady of Loreto Carnival in 1981 (left)
and in 1983. The carnivals were a great fundraising success.
Due to the committment and hard work of
the carnival committees and all the parishioners involved, the yearly endeavor
succeeded in building a parish community beyond compare. The original parish
council was inaugurated under the guidance of Father Grosko. Also, the church
grounds were enhanced with many beautiful trees and shrubs.
Father Grosko, who always had a strong
desire to serve in the missions, left the parish on August 24, 1981, for an
assignment in the Phillippines. Even though his stay was short, he touched the
congregation in a very special way.
Bishop Vincent Leonard assigned Reverend
Charles J. Chatt as the next pastor of Our Lady of Loreto on August 24, 1981.
Father Chatt was experienced in the pastoral duties of the diocese and familiar
to the responsibilities of Catholic Education.
The 25th Anniversary
Celebration and Dedications
Father Chatt brought in the first
In-Parish Weekend Retreats and undertook the task of renovating the church
for the 25th Anniversary Celebration.
On May 25, 1984, a new, handcarved
crucifix, pulpit and altar, donated in memory of Monsignor James Shanahan, were
installed. On Sunday, May 27, on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the
establishment of the parish, the new altar, which represents Christ with the
family of Loreto gathered around Him, and the new lecturn were dedicated.
The beautiful liturgy was followed with
a reunion in the Social Hall, which was attended by many members of Monsignor
Shanahan's family, former parishioners and present members of Our Lady of
In September of 1989, the priests
of our diocese joined Bishop Wuerl in an Orientation Day for our Diocesan
Reorganization Process, which faced critical issues of population decline
in our six county diocesan area and limited numbers of clergy and
religious in our diocese.
From January through May of 1990, Our
Lady of Loreto Parish participated, as did all parishes, in having a Parish Task
Force, Town Hall Meetings and completing of the Parish In-depth Self-Study
forms to determine the future directions of our parish and
Father Chatt participated until his
reassignment in 1992, and then Father James W. Dolan took over, first as
administrator and then as pastor. During the tenure of Father Dolan, the
results of the Reorganization Process began to unfold, and major changes
were made in the diocesan school and religious system.
Due to the decreasing number of registered
families (750 families in 1999), Loreto was assigned only one priest,
the pastor, and the mass schedule had to be adjusted to accomodate this
change. Changes in the scholastic system would soon follow.
Father James W. Dolan
On November 7, 1993, Loreto honored
the Apostles of the Sacred Heart, who were celebrating the 100th year of their
existence as a religious congregation of women, with a special liturgy
Then, on December 10, 1994, Loreto celebrated
the 700th anniversary of the miracle of the Holy House of Loreto, with a Liturgy
involving as many priests who served the parish in the years gone by as
well as the priests who were ordained from the parish.
As the parish was getting older
and smaller, the number of students in the elementary school began to decline
to the point that quality Catholic education was being jeopardized due to high
costs, dwindling enrollments and increasing parish debt.
On January 8, 1995,
Loreto entered into a Task Force with Resurrection, St. Pius X, St. Pamphilus
and St. Catherine parishes, who were experiencing similar problems, to
study alternatives that would make a quality Catholic School education available
to more families and more sustainable by the parishes.
The result of this year-long study
was the establishment of a three parish school merger, which was approved
by Bishop Wuerl on January 17, 1996. Through the consultation process it was
determined that Our Lady of Loreto, St. Pius X and Resurrection Schools would
close and give birth to a new regional school named Brookline Regional
The Sisters skated off to their
next assignment in 1996.
After the completion of the 1996 school
year, Loreto had to say goodbye to the Apostles of the Sacred Heart, who had
staffed the school for thirty-four years. The Sisters had to leave because of their
dwindling numbers and other education ministries they had to staff. A special
Mass and celebration was hosted in their honor on May 19, 1996, and the sisters
bid their farewell on June 12, 1996.
Brookline Regional Catholic School
opened on August 30, 1996, and Bishop Wuerl was on hand to celebrate a Mass
in dedication of the new school opening. Since then Brookline Regional Catholic
has developed an excellent, vibrant educational program with a quality
faith-filled staff and administration.
Our Lady of Loreto school was used
for the preschool, kindergarten, and primary students of BRC until the end
of school in 2004. St. Pius X was the site for the older elementary
students. In August 2004 the Our Lady of Loreto site was closed and the St.
Pius school housed all Brookline Regional Catholic students, which
Many accomplishments made during the
thirty-four years of Our Lady Of Loreto School will never be forgotten. Many
Brookline children received their religious education through the teachings of
the Sisters and the many lay instructors that served as teachers.
Century and the 50th Anniversary Approaches
Father Dolan presided over the
parish until his departure in 1999, which was also the 19th and final
year for the Loreto carnival. Reverend George F. Chortos became the
adminstrator of Our Lady Of Loreto. During his five years at Our Lady
of Loreto, Father Chortos worked hard to further the tradition and
spiritual well-being of the Loreto congregation.
Father Chortos was reassigned
in late-2004. In 2005 Father Robert J. Miller was appointed administrator.
In 2006, Bishop David Zubik named Father Miller as the eighth pastor of
Our Lady of Loreto parish. Father Miller had been the pastor at St. Pius
X parish, located one mile away on Pioneer Avenue, since 2002. In his dual
pastorship role, he oversaw both congregations.
Father Robert J. Miller
Beloved by parishioners at both St.
Pius and Our Lady of Loreto, Father Miller's steady leadership saw Loreto
through the parish’s 50th Anniversary celebration in 2009. His tireless
efforts throughout the community of Brookline continued until his
reassignment, to St. Peter and Paul in Beaver, in November 2011.
Father Gary Krummert
In December, 2011, Father Gary
Krummert was assigned as pastor of Our Lady of Loreto, assuming the dual
pastorship role with St. Pius X. Father Gary Krummert hailed from
Kennedy Township and was a graduate of Montour High School. The church's
Ninth Pastorate lasted a brief year. In December of 2012 Father Gary went
on a sabatical and the pastorship passed to another priest with local ties,
Reverend James Bachner.
James Bachner - The Tenth Pastor
Already the pastor of Saint Catherine
of Sienna Church in Beechview, Reverend Bachner was called upon to assume the
dual-role as leader of Our Lady of Loreto and St. Pius. Already quite popular
with his congregation in Beechview, Reverend Bachner has brought his youthful
exhuberance and leadership qualities to the families of Our Lady of Loreto and
St. Pius X in Brookline.
Reverend Bachner officially took on his
new assignment as the tenth paster of Our Lady of Loreto Roman Catholic Church
during a Mass in April 2013 celebrated with Bishop David Zubik. The congregations
of Saint Catherine of Sienna in Beechview, along with Our Lady of Loreto and St.
Pius X here in Brookline, were fortunate to have such a fine man leading the way
through these difficult and challenging times. Reverend Bachner prepared to guide
the parish through the second decade of the 21st Century and
In June of 2014, The Roman Catholic Diocese
decided on renaming Brookline Regional Catholic School after Saint John Bosco.
The new name of the school would be Saint John Bosco Academy, and it officially
opened in August for the 2014/2015 school year.
Saint John Bosco (August 16, 1815 – January
31, 1888), popularly known as Don Bosco, was an Italian Roman Catholic priest,
educator and writer of the 19th century. While working in Turin, where the
population suffered many of the effects of industrialization and urbanization,
he dedicated his life to the betterment and education of street children, juvenile
delinquents, and other disadvantaged youth.
He developed teaching methods based on
love rather than punishment, a method that became known as the Salesian Preventive
System. Don Bosco was beatified in 1929, and cannonized as a saint in the Roman
Catholic Church by Pope Pius XI in 1934.
Much to the dismay of Brookline Catholic
families, on February 23, 2019 the Diocese of Pittsburgh announced that due to
financial considerations and low enrollment (only 80 students) Saint John Bosco
Academy would be shuttered at the close of the 2018-2019 school year.
Despite petitions from concerned citizens,
the diocese stuck to its decision. Local parents in search of parochial alternatives
for their children were forced to look elsewhere. This brought to an end the 107
year tradition of Catholic education within the boundaries of the Brookline
In September 2015, the diocese called upon
Reverend Bachner once again to take over the responsibility of a further two parishes,
this time the Church of the Resurrection in Brookline and St. Pamphilus in Beechview.
Reverend Bachner was now the Pastor of five distinct churches, all within close
proximity of each other.
The five-church merger for a while was
known as Brookline-Beechview Catholic. While the diocese pondered the potential
closing of one or more of the individual churches, they retained their own identity
and Masses were still held at each church.
Questionaires were circulated among
parishioners to choose a new name to replace Brookline-Beechview Catholic. While
the congregations of each of the five churches awaited a decision on the fate of
their respective houses of worship, the spirit of God continued to flow through
those hallowed halls.
Saint Teresa of Kolkata Parish
On May 17, 2019, by decree of Bishop David
A. Zubik, the parish of Saint Teresa of Kolkata was formed as a merger of the five
Brookline-Beechview parishes. The parish was served initially by Pastor Reverend
James M. Bachner, Reverend Gary W. Oehmler (Vicar), Reverend Fernando Torres (Vicar),
Deacon Mark S. Bibro and Deacon Thomas J. O'Neill.
Mary Teresa Bojaxhiu was born August 26, 1910,
in Skopje (now the capital of North Macedonia), then part of the Kosovo Vilayet of
the Ottoman Empire. After living in Skopje for eighteen years, she moved to Ireland
and then to India, where she lived for most of her life.
Commonly known as Mother Teresa, in 1950,
she founded the Missionaries of Charity, a Roman Catholic religious congregation
that had over 4,500 nuns and was active in 133 countries in 2012. The congregation
manages homes for people who are dying of HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis.
It also runs soup kitchens, dispensaries, mobile
clinics, children's and family counselling programs, as well as orphanages and schools.
Members take vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience, and also profess a fourth vow - to
give "wholehearted free service to the poorest of the poor."
Mother Teresa received a number of honours,
including the 1962 Ramon Magsaysay Peace Prize and 1979 Nobel Peace Prize. She was
canonised as Saint Teresa of Calcutta on September 4, 2016, and the anniversary of
her death (September 5, 1997) is her feast day.
A controversial figure during her life and
after her death, Teresa was admired by many for her charitable work. She was praised
and criticised for her opposition to abortion. On September 6, 2017, Saint Teresa and
Saint Francis Xavier were named co-patrons of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of
Calcutta. Now, Saint Teresa of Kolkata will be forever linked to the communities of
Brookline and Beechview.
"Mass of Farewell"
On Sunday, August 30, 2020, a "Mass of Farewell"
was held at Our Lady of Loreto church. It was the final Mass celebrated at the church,
putting an end to Our Lady of Loreto's glorious and spiritually lifting sixty-one year
history in the Community of Brookline.
The Our Lady of Loreto sanctuary before the
final Mass on August 30, 2020.
♦ Video - Mass of Farewell - August 30, 2020 ♦
The Pastors and Administrators
of Our Lady of Loreto Parish
Father Arthur L. Garbin
(May 1959 - March 1968)
Father Raymond A. Cercone
(March 1968 - September 1972)
Monsignor James P. Shanahan
(September 1972 - November 1978)
Father Joseph R. Grosko
(December 1978 - August 1981)
Father Charles J. Chatt
(August 1981 - July 1992)
Father James W. Dolan
(August 1992 - October 1999)
Father George F. Chortos
(November 1999 - January 2005)
Father Robert J. Miller
(January 2005 - November 2011)
Father Gary Krummert
(December 2011 - December 2012)
Reverend James Bachner
(December 2012 - August 2020)
Reverend James Bachner
and In Residence
Father James Woods (May 1964-August 1967)
Father John Doherty (August 1967-December 1968)
Father Thomas More (March 1969-August 1969)
Father Morgan Walsh (June 1969-June 1970)
Father Hanry Szarnicki (June 1970-August 1971)
Father Robert A. Valko (August 1971-August 1974)
Father Thomas O'Neill (August 1974-June 1979)
Father Richard Roos (July 1979-July 1984)
Father Ronald Cellini (July 1984-June 1985)
Father Nicholas Spirko (June 1985-October 1992)
Father James Young (January 2005-June 2006)
Father Frank Almade (June 2006-July 2007)
Father David Bonnar (July 2007-May 2009)
Father Harry Bielewicz (May 2009-February 2012)
Father Joseph Freedy (March 2012-July 2012)
Father Gary Oehmler (July 2013-July 2020)
Father Fernando Torres (2017-August 2020)
First Holy Communion on May 15, 1966.
Deacon Barry O'Leary
(August 2006-June 2007)
Seminarian Thomas Gillespie (Summer 2007 and Summer 2008)
Deacon Mark S. Bibro (2019-2020)
Deacon Thomas J. O'Neill (2019-2020).
Sons of the
Reverend Richard L. Conboy, Jr. (March 1960)
Reverend Joseph Krah (December 1963)
Reverend Richard N. Whalen (May 1967)
Reverend Harry Nichols (May 1973)
Reverend James Kunkel (May 1973)
Reverend Richard Seiler (October 1980)
Reverend Carmen D'Amico (June 1982)
of the Parish
Sister Bernadette Fondy - The Sisters of Charity (September 1964)
Sister Donna Korczyk - Passionist Contemplative Order (January 1980)
The Our Lady of Loreto Sanctuary after
renovations, including new altar and pulpit, in May 1985.
The Principals of Loreto Elementary School
Sister Estelle Murphy (1961-1965)
Sister Pauline Signorino (1965-1968)
Sister Adrianne DiLonardo (1968-1973)
Sister Rita Petrarca (1973-1979)
Sister Christine Kiley (1979-1982)
Sister Rita Petrarca (1982-1986)
Sister Dominic Joseph Valla (1986-1992)
Sister Catherine Antinora (1992-1995)
Sister Susan Nolkemper (1995-1996)
who taught at Loreto Elementary School
Sister Catherine Antinora
Sister Ruth Aubrey (Mark Marie)
Sister Patricia Brady
Sister Lorraine Bunnell
Sister Carolyn Carlisano (Mary Nicholas)
Sister Marie Elena Cascio
Sister Vivian Chiodini
Sister Patricia Cigrand
Sister Diane Cipolla (Mary Daniel)
Sister John Catherine Coleman
Sister Kathleen Mary Coonan
Sister Adrianne DiLonardo
Sister Terence DiRomolo
Sister Dorothea Dottario
Sister Maureen Fitzgerald
Sister Maureen Flynn
Sister Rose Eugene Gabianelli
Sister Madaleva Gall
Sister Mary Carol Gentile
Sister Mary Angela Gianino
Sister Pamela Giannette
Sister Maura Shaun Green
Sister Francine Guglielmo
Sister Katherine Heimann
Sister Madeline Henry
Sister Jerilyn Hunihan
Sister Irene Janello
Sister Christine Kiley (Luke Damien)
Sister Janet Kofron
Sister Sandra Krupp
Sister Marilyn Lagermann (Bernetta)
Sister Shawn Lyons
Sister John Marie Miano
Sister Daniela Minniti
Sister Eugenia Maria da Salva
Sister Veronica Marinari
Sister Mary Kenneth Marischen
Sister Kierstin Martin
Sister Maureen Martin
Sister Diane Mastroianni
Sister Barbara Matazzaro
Sister William Estelle Matthews
Sister Kathleen McCloskey
Sister Ellen K. McCormack
Sister Lynda Beth McFarland
Sister Jacinta Medley
Sister Estelle Murphy
Sister Jean Musco (Mary Jude)
Sister Susan Nolkemper
Sister Ellen O'Connor
Sister Rita Petrarca
Sister James Marie Roach
Sister John Kevin Sanicola
Sister Pauline Signorino (Ann Marie)
Sister Mary Karen Skurat
Sister Colleen Smith
Sister John Martin Sullivan
Sister Laura Jeanne Sullivan
Sister William Ann Tidgewell
Sister Dominic Joseph Valla
Sister Mary Grace Walsh
Sister Alicia Wolf
Sister Mary White (Simon Peter)
Sister Rose Yanase
* Thanks to Sister Dominic
Joseph for providing this information *
The Principals of Brookline Regional Catholic School
Maryann Knoll (1996-1998)
Janet Salley-Rakoczy (1998-2014)
The Principal of Saint John Bosco Academy
Janet Salley-Rakoczy (2014-2019)
Our Lady of Loreto Church/School Photo Gallery
* Click on images for
larger pictures *
Students release balloons filled with
prayer cards in May 1, 1986.
Our Lady of Loreto - Patron Saint of Aviators
Ensign James Charles Wonn
Shot Down Over Laos
February 17, 1968
Our Lady of Loreto is the Patron Saint
of Aviators. The link above tells the story of one of the members of the parish
who gave the ultimate sacrifice during the Vietnam War and was listed as Missing in
Action for twenty-five years. It is a touching reminder of the power of Our Lady
of Loreto and how she watched over him and eventually helped to guide him back
to his family after so many long years of uncertainty.
James Wonn's Our Lady of Loreto medallion
that was found in Laos.
Our Lady of Loreto History
webpage designed by Clint Burton in cooperation with Loreto Parish.
* Last Updated: August 31, 2020 *