Parish History

The Church and administration facility is a 39,000 sq. feet building with church seating for over 1,100, 10 classrooms, meeting room, conference room, office space, and a Parish Hall.  Stained glass windows from the original mission church were used in the parish hall to bring forward our past.

Fr. Baltasar Szarka, affectionately called Fr. B, was our for pastor and native of Hungary.  He was ordained in France in 1949.  In 1952, Fr. B joined other Cistercians from Hungary who settled in Wisconsin.  The group moved to Irving in 1956, and Fr. B began his ministry at St. Francis in 1961.

He was a wonderful listener and loved children.  He was a loving pastor to the growing community at St. Francis.  Fr. B retired as pastor in August of 1997 due to failing health and was honored with a special mass and reception.  Fr. B died on April1, 2000.  Fr. B left us with a legacy of love of the Eucharist and sense of community.
Fr. Ken Robinson, our recent pastor, was born in Austria, the second of four children in an Air Force family.  His father served several assignments in Europe before returning to the Texas.  

Fr. Ken was raised in a Protestant tradition, but as a teenager entered the Catholic Church.  Fr. Ken has a rich educational and work background. He has a BA in Secondary Education with specialization in History, English, and Microbiology and a Masters Degree in History.  Before entering the seminary, he worked as a teacher and as a medical technologist.  He completed his Masters of Divinity degree at Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio.  He was ordained a priest on May 16, 1992 at his home parish of, St. Rita in Fort Worth.
Fr. Ken served as associate pastor at St. Michael's Church in Bedford and later as pastor of St. George's Church in Fort Worth before being named pastor of St. Francis in August 1997.  Fr. Ken was assigned pastor of Sacred Heart in Muenster, TX effective January 1, 2007.

Fr. Anh Tran, our current pastor was born and baptized in Saigon, Viet Nam in 1963.  As a teenager he moved with his parents and siblings to Fort Worth, Texas in 1975.  He became a citizen of the United States of America in 1992.

He attended St. Rita Catholic School and Eastern Hills High School in East Fort Worth.  He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Conception seminary College in Missouri in 1985, a Master of Divinity from St. Mary's Seminary in Houston in 1990 and Licentiate in Canon Law from Catholic University of America in 1996.  Fr. Anh is fluent in Spanish to celebrate Mass and hear confession.

Fr. Anh was ordained by Bishop Joseph Delaney at St. Matthew Church, Arlington, May 26, 1990.  His first assignment was at St. Michael's Church in Bedford.  In 1996 Fr. Anh was appointed pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Breckenridge, Texas with its four Mission Churches in Shackelford, Throckmorton and Palo Pinot counties.  At that time Fr. Anh was also appointed to serve in the Marriage Tribunal for the Archdiocese of San Antonio. He is currently serving as Defender of the Bond.

In 1999  Fr. Anh was appointed Diocesan Director for Vocations and has served in that position until December 2006.  Bishop Kevin Vann appointed Fr. Anh pastor of St Francis of Assisi church and as Vicar Forane for the Northeast Deanery effective May1, 2007.