Person:Rev. Theodore L. Flynn

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Rev. Theodore L. Flynn


Photo from Taylor
 Catholic Priest

Resided at:222 Jefferson Street N


Notes:

•  Priest for St. Mary's Church of the Visitation beginning in 1945 and ending in 1958. - Taylor

•  Served on the committee for the celebration of the "Freedom of Religion Day" in the Sesquicentennial Festival. - Taylor

•  Father Flynn is mentioned over fifty times in 'A Mighty Fortress of Faith.' He officiated at weddings, celebrations, and funerals. He provided counsel and instruction for the young and the old. He served on committees in the community and was key to various initiatives within the church. - Tumminello

•  Patrick McCauley, in Tumminello (pages 240-243), offers information about the legacy of Father Flynn:
     "Father Theodore Flynn was friendly and gregarious, he had been assigned here by the Bishop of the Diocese of Alabama/Florida, whose was far away in Mobile. Father Flynn's assignment: to mend the reputation of the church in this city whose sensibilities had been grievously offended by his predecessor, Father Arthur Terminiello (no kin to and not to be confused with the Tumminellos)."
     "Father Flynn was a pastor I could relate to. He was devout, orthodox, dedicated and secular in the sense that he observed the distinction between religion and politics prevalent in that era. His sermons were instructive rather than inspiring."
     "In redeeming the Church in the eyes of the community, he was active in civic affairs. He was a dedicated Rotarian, until, for reasons I never understood, the Church in the U.S. directed its clergy to sever membership in that organization, whereupon Father Flynn regularly, for a while, visited the lobby of the old Russel Erskine Hotel on meeting day to greet and chat with friends and acquaintances as they filed into the meeting." - Tumminello

•  Walt Wilson, in Tumminello (pages 316-320), shared this story of Father Flynn:
"The life of young Walter III was a mixture of devout growth in the Church and incessant pranks. He would arise before sunup on weekdays to ride his bicycle to St. Mary's to serve Mass for Father Theodore Flynn or Father Messmer from St. Joseph's. One day he allowed his dog, Biff, to follow him to church and Biff, not being Catholic, had to wait outside the doors. As Mass began, Biff began a constant mournful wailing to the point that Father Flynn interrupted Mass, turned around to the congregation and asked for somebody to see who was torturing that poor dog outside the church doors. Walt, kneeling at the foot of the altar in cassock and surplice, prayed for the gift of invisibility." - Tumminello

•  In Father Flynn's bio written by Pat Tumminello, she says: "During his tenure, he recognized the need for a mission for the black Catholics in Huntsville and the surrounding area. (This was prior to integration and the Civil Rights movement and all churches in the South were segregated.) Working with Bishop Toolen and the Provincial of the Society of the Divine Savior, he brought Father Hemenigild Messmer to Huntsville to begin St. Joseph's Mission (later St. Joseph's Catholic Church). The first Mass at the mission was on September 14, 1952." - Tumminello

•  President, North Alabama T. B. Association, 1948. - Record

•  Chaplain, BPOE (Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks) 1648-4-54 - Record


Related Links:
•  Elks, Record - Great Elks in Madison County?? You Better Believe It!! A History of Madison County, Alabama, Elkdom, by James Record, 1972, pages 20, 27, 58-60.
•  Record - A Dream Come True: The Story of Madison County and Incidentally of Alabama and the United States, Volume II, by James Record, 1978, page 672.
•  Taylor - Commemorative Album, Celebrating our City's Sesquicentennial of Progress, Huntsville, Alabama, by James E. Taylor, General Chairman, 1955, pages 140, 338, and a photo on 339.
•  Tumminello - A Mighty Fortress of Faith: A History of St. Mary of the Visitation Church, 1861-2011, by Edited by Pat Tumminello, 2012, pages 127, 152, 159, 166, 172, 231, 235, 240, 241, 251, 252, 276, 283, 291, 300, 304, 306, 317, 340, 341, 342, 345, 380, 393, 398 photo, 341.


The Following Pages Link to this Page:
•  222 Jefferson Street N



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