Established in 1938, Burbank’s Saint Finbar Parish constructed its first church in the early years of the 1940s on the corner of Keystone Street and Olive Avenue.
Ten years later, having outgrown the facility, building commenced on a new church across the street. After 14 months of construction, the Saint Finbar church of today was dedicated by then-Los Angeles Archbishop James McIntyre who, the following year, would be appointed by Pope Pius XII to serve as the first cardinal of the Western United States.
In celebration of Saint Finbar’s 75 years of service to the community, the church celebrated its diamond anniversary as a part of its annual Harvest Ball held at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center this past Friday.
Chaired by former Burbank Mayor Michael Hastings, the evening honored the parish’s pastor, Father Albert Bahhuth, by presenting him with the 2013 Harvester of Faith Award. Given annually, the honor is bestowed upon individuals who have enhanced the faith life of the community by their example of faith, hope, love and service.
“Eleven years ago, our parish was in need of a multitalented individual and Father Albert came to us as a gift from God,” Hastings said. “He has developed a style that brought many people together to fulfill the hopes and dreams of our parish.”
Before being ordained as a priest in 1996, Bahhuth, who was born in Beirut, Lebanon, worked as a chemical engineer.
Among the 300-plus who came out to honor Bahhuth were Councilmen Jess Talamantes and Bob Frutos, former Mayor Marsha Ramos, Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority President Sue Georgino, City Manager Mark Scott and Police Chief Scott LaChasse.
Among those whose work and dedication made for a successful evening were Harvest Ball committee members Ellen Dimler, Mary Greer, Stephanie Jonke, Allison Knowles, Erica Menke, Lucy and Rebecca Planter and Katie Ross.
Proceeds from Friday’s event will benefit the Saint Finbar Community Center.
DAVID LAURELL may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or (818) 563-1007.