Father Joseph W. Koterski, S.J.


Father Joseph W. Koterski, S.J., who served at Fordham University in the Bronx for nearly 30 years, died Aug. 9 while directing a religious retreat in Connecticut. He was 67.

At Fordham, where he served in the philosophy department since 1992, he held the rank of associate professor, was chair of the philosophy department, 2002-2005, and director of the Master of Arts in Philosophical Resources program for Jesuit seminarians, 1996-2001.

He was editor in chief of International Philosophical Quarterly, a Fordham peer-reviewed philosophy journal. Beginning in 1994, he lived at Queen’s Court, a residential college for freshmen, where he was chaplain and then master, serving as an academic adviser and counselor.

He also taught at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie, the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Loyola College in Baltimore and St. Louis University.

His ministry included outreach to women religious, particularly the Sisters of Life and the Missionaries of Charity through sacraments, retreats, days of recollection and spiritual direction.

He also served as a member of the advisory board of the Catholic Artists Society, headquartered in New York.

Born in Ohio and raised in Pittsburgh, he entered the Society of Jesus in 1984 and made his final vows in 2001. He was ordained in 1992.

He attended Bishop’s Latin School in Pittsburgh. He earned an honors bachelor’s degree in classical languages from Xavier University in Cincinnati and, from St. Louis University, a master’s and doctorate in philosophy. He also held a master of divinity degree in theology and a licentiate in sacred theology from Weston School of Theology in Cambridge, Mass.

A Funeral Mass was offered Aug. 17 at the Fordham University Church, the Bronx. Burial was at the Jesuit Cemetery in Wernersville, Pa.