We exist to form joyful missionary disciples of Jesus Christ who transform hearts under the prayerful guidance of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Current Rector

Father Brendan Fitzgerald began serving as Rector of the Basilica of the Assumption on July 1, 2022.



Fr. Brendan is assisted by Deacon Sean Keller and Deacon Robert Shephard.

Deacon Sean Keller

Our Team

We are a small but mighty team committed to growing closer to our Lord Jesus Christ and serving the parish in varied and exciting ways. We love coming to work!

Office Manager: Ms. Maura Belton
Business Manager: Mr. Lee Donelson
Pilgrimage Coordinator: Mrs. Ana Farias
Sacristan: Mr. Mark Marozza
Operations Manager: Deacon Jose Rivera
Director of Music: Mr. Sam Rowe
Director of Evangelization: Ms. Angelus Virata

Our Volunteers

We are grateful for our many volunteers, including our team of knowledgeable docents, who offer daily tours of our historic church.

If you'd like more information on tours, click here.

John Carroll

First bishop and archbishop of Baltimore and founder of the American Catholic hierarchy, John Carroll was born at Upper Marlboro, Maryland, On January 8 (or 19), 1736, the fourth of seven children of Daniel Carroll, merchant and planter, and Eleanor Darnall. 

For the rest of Archbishop Carroll's birography click here.

Archbishops of Baltimore

Since Archbishop Carroll, there have been 15 Archbishops of Baltimore. The most recent, Archbishop William Edward Lori was installed May 16, 2012.

To view Archbishop Lori's page, click here.


The historic Baltimore Basilica, built from 1806-1821, was the first great metropolitan cathedral constructed in the United States after the adoption of the Constitution. America’s First Cathedral, officially known as the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, quickly became a symbol of the country’s newfound religious freedom. Two prominent Americans guided the Basilica’s design and architecture: John Carroll, the country’s first bishop, later Archbishop of Baltimore, and cousin of Charles Carroll, a signer of the Declaration of Independence; and Benjamin Henry Latrobe, father of American architecture, and Thomas Jefferson’s Architect of the Capitol.

For more history, click here.
James Cardinal Gibbons with Theodore Roosevelt
Archbishop John Carroll
James Cardinal Gibbons

CELENA HOEY – Joined in 2017, council president

Hello everyone! I currently work as a mental health therapist serving the homeless of the city.  I have worked in the helping profession for about 20 years and I continue to grow in gratitude for the privilege of people sharing some of the most precious parts of themselves with me.  Before moving to Baltimore in 2012, I lived in Pennsylvania and New Mexico.  I was born and raised Catholic but did not fall in love with Catholicism until about 2009 when I realized the ways of the world brought fleeting pleasure and lots of pain as opposed to the lasting joy and peace which we all seek.  The more I allow God to lead my life instead of trying to control Him, the more of His love that I experience.  By God’s grace, mass is genuinely the favorite part of my day and the saints are my best friends.  I became a parishioner at the Basilica in 2015 and enjoy not just the physical beauty of our church but the warmth of the parishioners and our amazing liturgy.  There is no doubt that the Basilica is alive with ways to grow in holiness, many of which that have changed my life such as Discovering Christ, the Rosary Congress, amazing speakers, nights of adoration and each of you who inspire me to holiness.  I love our Basilica family and look forward to meeting each of you.  Please come and introduce yourself to me.

JAMES and STEPHANIE WITHEY– Joined in 2020, Stephanie is Council Secretary

Hello! We have been parishioners at the Basilica since 2017, after moving to Baltimore from Los Angeles and Boston. James is a hospitalist physician at Howard County General Hospital and is passionate about serving his patients through compassionate clinical care. Stephanie is a former teacher and education non-profit director, who is passionate about serving communities in need through health education and youth mentorship. We were married at the Basilica in August 2018, and attribute the development of our faith to the powerful, healing intercession of the Blessed Mother and a transformative experience participating in Discovering Christ at the Basilica. We are looking forward to deepening our love for Christ, serving the Basilica and meeting new parishioners! We are especially excited to meet new couples, and have a special prayer intention for all those discerning or preparing for marriage.

OBY EBENEBE – Joined in 2020

Hi, I am a postdoctoral research fellow at Johns Hopkins University. I moved to Baltimore from New Zealand in 2019 and discovered the Basilica in my first week. I am excited to be on the parish council. I love Jesus and I want everyone to love Him and know how AMAZING He is. I have a PhD in physiology and my work and studies have helped increase my love and awe of God. The cellular mechanisms at work in the human body from conception to adulthood function in a wonderfully synergistic manner that defends, protects, maintains and encourages life. It has been a marvel to attempt to comprehend it, and it has drawn me close to The One through whom all things were made. I love His Bride, The Church, and want everyone to love her too. She is Our Mother and as pilgrims in the Basilica of the Assumption (the country’s first Cathedral), I believe we hold a very special place in His Heart for the country.  My prayer for everyone (especially on birthdays), is to grow in understanding of the depth of the love that Our God has for each of us individually, and to use that lens to see others. Come, say hi, introduce yourself and let me see you and chat with me about the many ways He is blessing you.

ED and LYNN MUHLER – Joined in 2019

We have been parishioners at the Basilica since 2017, after belonging to a parish in Harford County for 27 years. We have three children and two grandchildren.  Lynn is an Occupational Therapist providing home healthcare to patients in Harford and Cecil counties. Ed works in the business office of the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory. Past parish volunteer activities have included youth, liturgical and music ministries and Lynn is also a small group leader for Walking with Purpose.  We are both members of the Regnum Christi Movement.  We are honored to serve on the Pastoral Council supporting the rector and witnessing the impact that the Basilica will have in transforming


After a long search for a spiritually sustaining parish home, my husband, Paul and I found the Basilica and became parishioners 6 years ago.  As do many, we drive into the city from a distance, hailing from Ellicott City.  We have 9 children and 12 young grandchildren, so this stage of life is quite busy.  We will celebrate our 40th anniversary this January!  I returned to graduate school as our younger children were completing high school and am currently a clinical psychologist in private practice.  I greatly appreciate the opportunity to serve on the parish council and am grateful for the deep spirituality and beautiful liturgies at the Basilica of the Assumption.

Finance Committee

Chair:                   Robert Walter

Members:          Lee Donelson, Hannah Popp, Deacon Bob Shephard, Fr. Brendan Fitzgerald