Katharine Mary Drexel (26 November, 1858-3 March, 1955) was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She enjoyed a life of comfort and privilege before deciding to use her inherited wealth to establish a new religious order within the Roman Catholic Church. For her life and work, she has been formally recognized by her Church as one of its saints.
Henry George Ganss (22 February, 1855-25 December, 1912) was a Roman Catholic priest of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, as well as a musician and historian. For twenty years he served as pastor of Saint Patrick’s parish in Carlisle, and then he became pastor of Saint Mary’s parish in Lancaster.
This institution is unique in the fact that it has two physical structures in two different locations with the same name. The East Pomfret Street site, the Shrine Church is the original location for the catholic faith’s presence in Cumberland County.