Msgr. Peter Chiara, 30 years at St. Mary’s


ROCKVILLE CENTRE — Msgr. Peter Chiara, 87, pastor emeritus of St. Mary’s Church in East Islip, died Oct. 28.

Ordained to the priesthood May 22, 1948, he served as associate pastor at St. Rocco, Glen Cove; Our Lady of Miracles, Brooklyn; St. Lucy, Brooklyn; and St. Pius X, Plainview. In 1958 he joined the faculty of St. Pius X Prep Seminary, Uniondale, and in 1964 became spiritual director at the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception, Huntington.

He became pastor of St. Sylvester, Medford in 1970, and in 1981 was appointed pastor of St. Mary’s, following a short time there as administrator. He retired from the pastorate in 1990, continuing to serve the people of St. Mary’s as pastor emeritus. He also directed parish missions and retreats around the world.

He was named honorary prelate to His Holiness and received the title “monsignor” in 1980.
At a Mass of Transferal Sunday evening, Oct. 31 at St. Mary’s, Bishop Emil Wcela presided and Msgr. Thomas Spadaro preached the homily. Bishop William Murphy presided at the funeral Mass celebrated at St. Mary’s on Nov. 1, the Feast of All Saints. Msgr. James McNamara was the homilist. Burial was in St. John’s Cemetery, Middle Village.

Msgr. Chiara’s nephew Nicholas Chiara of West Hempstead survives him.