Fr. Leonard Carrieri, M.SS.CC.
June 20, 2009 our Missionaries around the world received word of the
death of Fr. Leonard Carrieri, M.SS.CC., who at age 95 was our
oldest member and for all of us, a shining example of religious life
lived well. Born in Naples,
Italy in 1914,
Father Carrieri entered religious life with the congregation of the
Missionaries of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary in 1925.
He professed first religious vows in June, 1930 and was
ordained to the priesthood on October 25, 1936.He received a
Doctorate in Sacred Theology in 1939.
After serving in several offices for the congregation, he was
transferred to Argentina in 1947. He worked there as Novice Master
until 1954 when he came to the
to assist Fr. Roque Longo, M.SS.CC.
at Our Lady of Fatima Church, Camden, NJ, and became active
in ministry to the Latino faithful.
From 1960 to 1966, he was
called to Italy to serve as Superior General of the congregation.
Returning to the United States
in 1967, he served as Episcopal Vicar of the City of Camden. He was appointed as Pastor of Our Lady
of Sorrows parish, Linwood from 1975 to 1984.
He was Pastor at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel – Fatima from 1984 to
1989 and was very active in the Spanish Cursillo movement in
He retired to the community house, Villa Pieta, in Linwood in
Fr. Carrieri remained active in his retirement offering daily Mass
at Villa Pieta and was much sought after for spiritual direction and
preaching. Fr. Malcolm MacLeod, local
of the congregation, said, “Fr. Leonard exemplified the spirit of
our Founder in witnessing to great love and infinite mercy of God
for all people. He shall
always be remembered as someone who lived out the consecrated life
with sincere dedication and commitment. His devotion
to Our Lady of Sorrows, the patroness of the congregation was
an inspiration for his fellow Missionaries and for the faithful.”
Fr. Carrieri wrote extensively on the life of the Founder of the
congregation, newly canonized, St. Gaetano Errico.
Until just before his death, he actively wrote spiritual
messages for his own website that many found consoling and
Fr. Leonard was well known as a sculptor.
He won national and local awards and his sculptures can be
seen throughout the Diocese of Camden as well as in
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The province of NTT is one of the poorest in terms of
economy, education and basic facilities.
It is a country where the population is polarized between the
rich and powerful Muslim majority and the minority Christians and
Hindus. Income of the
people is derived from the agricultural sector and is barely enough
to sustain their daily life. They lack the means to provide
education and Catholic instruction for their children although they
have sound faith practices.
am of good conviction of living among the people here for the past 3
years, that we, the Missionaries of the Sacred Hearts can play a
small but significant role in the lives of these good faith-filled
challenge and our hope is that we can be a helping hand to them:
building places of worship and a strong faith community,
pastoral care, aiding in the areas of education, medical facilities,
job training, adequate shelter, clean water, etc.
I am sure that if God wills, we can work together, to ease the
burdens of the people, so that the presence of the Missionaries of
the Sacred Hearts really will be a ray of hope to some if not all.”
Fr. Jaison Abraham, M,SS.CC.