Monsignor Francis J. Childress, retired pastor of St. Elizabeth's Roman Catholic Church in East Baltimore, died Monday of heart failure at St. Joseph Hospital. He was 87 and lived at Stella Maris Hospice.
A mass of Christian burial for Monsignor Childress will be offered at 11 a.m. tomorrow in the chapel at Stella Maris, 2300 Dulaney Valley Road.
He retired in 1975 after serving as pastor of St. Elizabeth's Church since 1968. He had also been an assistant pastor there from his ordination in 1935 until 1955.
In between, he served as pastor of St. Augustine's Church in Elkridge.
A native of Newport News, Va., who was reared in Baltimore, he was a graduate of Loyola High School, Loyola College and St. Mary's Seminary.
Before entering the seminary, he pitched for semiprofessional and minor league baseball teams. In later years, he was an Oriole fan and a member of the Oldtimers Baseball Association of Maryland.
A charter member of St. Katharine's Assembly, an organization for former members of St. Katharine of Siena parish, he also served as a chaplain for the Catholic Daughters of America.
His survivors include a nephew, J. Edward Davis of Towson; and two nieces, Delores Kelly of Baltimore and Olivia Lee Maher of Red Lion, Pennsylvania.