By Emily Drooby
With a congratulatory hug and a round of applause, Brooklyn Auxiliary Bishop James Massa was officially installed as the twenty-second rector at St. Joseph’s Seminary and College.
Speaking at the installation to Currents News, Bishop Massa said, “It’s just a great feeling to be back here.”
He previously ministered at the school from 2012 to 2015. He taught and coordinated the merger, which was when the three downstate New York dioceses merged St. Joseph’s programs with those of the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Long Island.
“He was very instrumental in the architect, really, of the merger of the seminaries,” explained Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio. ‘So, it’s so wonderful that he’s going to be able to come back.”
Now that Bishop Massa is back, he’s already working on new goals.
“I was to continue to strengthen the bonds of connection between the seminarians and the local clergy. They need guidance and encouragement. So I would like to see those relationships grow,” he explained.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan called Bishop Massa the perfect person for this job.
“If you had a group of people sit down and describe the man you would want as the rector of the seminary…spiritual depth, an intimacy with the sacred art of priestly formation. A man with experience, a man who loves his priesthood and has immense pastoral experience. If you put that in a computer, guess whose name would come up: James Massa,” said Cardinal Dolan.
Seminarians agree with Cardinal Dolan.
“He’s down to earth, very humble, very caring and very spiritual, and those qualities are so good for our seminarians,” said Tobechukwu Offiah of Brooklyn.