Some Historical Notes about Saint Theresa Parish
Saint Theresa Parish was created on October 4, 1934 by Bishop Maurice F. McAuliffe of Hartford. Aware of the spiritual needs of the people of Trumbull, the Bishop made Saint Theresa’s the first Catholic church in our town, and dedicated it in honor of Saint Theresa, the Little Flower of Jesus. The Reverend James H. Killian was appointed the first pastor. A neighboring street now bears his name in recognition.
For the first year, Father Killian celebrated Mass in the Edison School auditorium. It was not until Bishop McAuliffe dedicated the small white frame church on September 22, 1935 that Saint Theresa’s functioned as a true parish. The church of New England colonial design could seat some four hundred people, and the former McLevy homestead became the parish rectory. Until his transfer in 1939, Father Killian gave our parish the leadership it needed to get off to a strong start.
During the forties, with the administrative abilities of Father James H. Grady, our second pastor, Saint Theresa’s was growing into a well-organized and unified parish. Its size grew also, along with the population rise in Trumbull. Father Grady continued as pastor until his transfer in 1949.
Our third pastor was a priest who still lives on in the memory of many of our parishioners, Msgr. Bartholomew J. Skelly. Under his leadership, the parish continued to grow in many ways. Our parish school opened for the first time on September 7, 1955, staffed by the School Sisters of Notre Dame. Growing numbers of people moving into the parish necessitated even the use of the gymnasium for two Masses on Sundays. The enrollment of the school grew, as did the need for teaching sisters. A new convent was built in 1957.
In 1960, Bishop Lawrence J. Shehan gave permission to construct our present church building, which was dedicated by Bishop Walter W. Curtis on April 1, 1962.
On December 10, 1967, the parish and the Town of Trumbull both were deeply saddened by Msgr. Skelly’s death. In the years since, our school gymnasium-auditorium has been named in his memory. Bishop Curtis appointed Msgr. James J. McLaughlin as the fourth pastor of Saint Theresa Parish.
Msgr. Louis A. DeProfio was appointed by Bishop Curtis in 1971 to be our fifth pastor. Msgr. DeProfio retired in June of 2003 having served St. Theresa Parish as pastor for 32 years.
Msgr. Peter P. Dora was appointed pastor by Bishop William E. Lori in July 2003. Msgr. Dora served as our sixth Pastor
Fr. Richard Murphy was appointed by Bishop William E. Lori in September 2006. Fr. Murphy served as our seventh Pastor.
Our present Pastor, Fr. Brian Gannon was appointed by Bishop William E. Lori in February 2010.
Saint Theresa’s has continued to grow; now consisting of well over 3000 households, our parish is one of the largest in the Diocese of Bridgeport. A large number of activities and parish organizations provide for the spiritual, social, educational, and Christian service needs of the people of Saint Theresa’s.