Father Joseph S. Dietz, who served for 15 years as pastor of Church of the Magdalene in Pocantico Hills, died Sept. 17. He was 80.
Father Dietz was pastor at the Magdalene, from 2000 to until his retirement in 2015. He served as parochial vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary parish, Scarsdale, 1994-2000, while serving part time at Catholic Charities. He served as assistant director of Catholic Charities’ Department of Family and Children Services, 1991-1994, and at St. Raymond parish, the Bronx, 1987-1991.
Born in Bellmore, he was ordained to the priesthood in 1987 after completing his studies at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie. He held a master’s degree in social work from Fordham University.
Cardinal Dolan offered the Funeral Mass Sept. 22 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, Scarsdale. “
I taught him at the seminary. He was wellrespected among the priests; there will be many concelebrants,” Father Anthony Ciorra, vice president of Mission Integration and Ministry at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn., told Catholic New York. Father Ciorra delivered the homily at the Funeral Mass.
“We have been friends all these years. I preached at his first Mass, and I preached at his 25th jubilee,” Father Ciorra said.
“He had a very compassionate and loving way with every person he dealt with. He saw himself in a good way as a wounded hero; he was a recovered alcoholic, sober for over 25 years. He told everybody this.
“He was someone who in his own brokenness, he found God’s healing and God’s grace…From the very moment that he was diagnosed with cancer, that he was going to die, he immediately
accepted it, and was very much at peace.”
Father Dietz is survived by his sisters, Joan Schramm and Katherine Samler, and eight nieces and nephews.
Burial was at Holy Rood Cemetery, Westbury, Long Island.