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140-10 34th Ave
Flushing, NY 11354

Phone: 718-762-7920
Fax: 718-460-8032

Parish Office Hours
Monday – Friday
9:00AM – 5:00PM

10:00AM – 3:00PM

Only by appointment

                                                                                     Chinese | Español
History of St. John Vianney Parish

The Parishioners of St. John Vianney Parish in Flushing, New York had celebrated the 43rd Anniversary of
their Parish on the August 4th, 2010.  The Parish was named in honor of St. John Vianney, the Patron
Saint of Parishes and Parish Priests.  St. John Vianney was the Pastor of a Parish in Ars, France.

On June 6, 1967, Archbishop Bryan J. McEntegart, the Bishop of Brooklyn, established the Parish of St.
John Vianney.  It was carved out of sections of the larger neighboring parishes of St. Michael, St. Mel
and St. Andrew Avellino.  The Brooklyn Diocese purchased the property on Union Street between 34th
and 35th Avenues at a cost of $497,200.00 in order to construct the Church and other Parish buildings. 
There were two two-family houses on the property.  One was demolished and the other became the
residence for the priests serving the Parish.

Father James McCabe was installed as the first Pastor on June 23, 1967 by Rev. Msgr. Francis B. Donnelly,
Pastor of St. Mary’s in Flushing and Dean of the area.  Father Michael J. Mellett was the first Associate
Pastor.  A certificate of incorporation was filed with the city and William J. Lavelle, Jr. and Robert Fahrer
were appointed the first trustees.  During the six years that it took to raise money, plan and construct
the Church and Parish Center, Sunday Mass was celebrated at the Flushing Singers Hall, an old German
social hall.  The priests’ residence was used for celebrating daily Mass and baptisms and hearing
confessions.  Susan Lavelle, the daughter of Mr. & Mrs. William J. Lavelle, Jr., was the first child baptized
in the new parish by Father Mellett on September 3, 1967 in the Rectory Chapel.  Religious education
classes were taught at neighboring St. Michael’s School.

After six years of sacrifice and hard work on the part of the founding parishioners, the people of St. John
Vianney Parish would have a Church.  Ground was broken for the new building in 1972 and it was just about completed in time for the first wedding – that of John Plover and Mary Heslin on October 6, 1973.  The first Masses were celebrated on the Feast of All Saints, November 1, 1973.  The Church and Parish Hall were dedicated on Saturday, December 1, 1973 by Bishop Francis J. Mugavero, Bishop of Brooklyn.  The first
child to be baptized in the new Chapel was Andre Christopher Grant, the son of Mr. & Mrs. Noel J. Grant.

In May 1974, Sister Mary Ann Loreto of the Sisters of the Catholic Apostolate (the Pallotini Sisters) arrived
and became the first Religious Education Coordinator.  In addition to training catechists, preparing children
for First Penance, First Communion and Confirmation, she conducted several courses for adult religious education.  She took an active interest in the religious committee of the Flushing Parishes called the
Flushing Module (the Flushing Pastoral Council).  Father Mellett returned to Ireland in the Spring of 1976
and was succeeded by Father Howard J. Tilley.

On Sunday, June 5, 1977 St. John Vianney Parish celebrated its 10th Anniversary with a Mass of
Thanksgiving and a Dinner-Dance later that day at the Cresthaven Country Club in Whitestone.  The Mass
and Dinner-Dance also honored Father McCabe on the occasion of the 40th Anniversary of his Ordination
to the Priesthood.  He died six years later on August 13, 1983.

Father George Nicholson was Pastor as St. John Vianney Parish celebrated its 25th Anniversary.  On the
Feast of All Saints (November 1, 1992), Bishop Thomas V. Daily celebrated a bi-lingual anniversary Mass
before an overflow crowd of more than 700 people.  Following the Mass, Bishop Daily blessed a new statue
of the Sacred Heart which was erected in front of the priests’ residence to mark the Parish’s 25th
Anniversary.  A reception with finger sandwiches, cookies, champagne and juice was then held in the
Parish Center.

Father Nicholson died on July 31, 1997 and was succeeded by Father Carlos Valencia.  Father Valencia
became ill and Father Brian Dowd was named Administrator of the Parish in March 2000 and Pastor in
September 2000.
Under Father Dowd’s able leadership St. John Vianney Parish continues to be a vibrant parish that is a
microcosm of the Diocese of Brooklyn.  Flea markets, Christmas Fairs and International Dinners have brought
the parishioners closer together and have also raised money to provide services for the parishioners and
to make much needed repairs for the parish buildings and grounds.  Recent and welcome additions to our
Parish are the three stained glass windows in the Church vestibule.  These windows were originally part
of Our Lady of the Skies Chapel at John F. Kennedy Airport.  Bishop Thomas V. Daily blessed them during
our 35th Anniversary Mass on June 5, 2002.

On January 29, 2006 a wonderful celebration took place to welcome in the Chinese New Year and the
addition of the Chinese community of Our Lady of China Chapel to St. John Vianney Church.  The chapel
and center were filled to capacity as a con-celebrated tri-lingual Mass in Mandarin, Cantonese and English
was celebrated by the Very Rev. Sean Ogle, the Episcopal Vicar. It was followed by a festive musical presentation of Chinese music and dance and a buffet of traditional Chinese foods provided by our new
members.  The Chinese congregation has become a vital and active welcome addition to the parish under
the guidance of Fr. Antonius Ho, who was assigned by the Bishop as associate pastor. The Chinese
community is also served by Fr. Su, Fr. Edward and Fr. Victor, all members of the Congregation of St.
John the Baptist.

On June 30th, 2009 Father Dowd left our parish to shepherd the flock at Queen of Angels in Sunnyside. 
Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio has entrusted St. John Vianney Church to the Little Brothers of St. John the
Baptist for the pastoral care and the evangelization.  The priests of the Congregation, Father Antonius Ho
has become the Temporary Administrator and Father Victor Cao the Parochial Vicar.  Together with the
Little Sisters of St. Theresa, Sr. Monica Gan and the entire parish community, the Little Brothers are
working hard to bring St. John Vianney Parish into a new decade with plans for a bright future for years
to come.