The parish that was† known as St. Vincent de Paul, parallels some of the richest history in the development of New Orleans. Although the parish was renamed for Blessed Francis Seelos, and† combined with the congregations of St. Cecilia, Annunciation, Holy Trinity and Saints Peter and Paul, back in 2001, many New Orleanians still refer to the area as St. Vincent de Paul Parish.
Of all the older Catholic churches in the area, St. Vincentís was a more modest building from the outside. Located in an area that was heavily occupied by maritime warehouses and ship chandlers, the church has drawn steadily from the Creole and French settlers of the Fabourgs downriver from the Vieux Carre. The history of St. Vincent de Paul Parish begins in 1838.
1838 Bishop Antoine Blanc assessed the growing population and boundaries and determined that the Creoles of the Third Municipal District needed a church in their area. An early frame church was constructed and named after St. Vincent de Paul who is the Secondary Parton Saint of the diocese.
1864: Father Etienne Foltier is appointed pastor after a succession of short pastorates that included Frs. Edmond DíHauw, Font, Francon, Bonifay, Schifferer, Solomon, Leveque, Detour, Riordan and Gudeon.
1866 Architect Louis Reynolds was appointed to design a new brick church building. Under the vision and determination of Father Foltier, the cornerstone was laid in 1866 for a new building.
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