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Webster - Rev. Joseph F. Szwach, 86, of Christopher Heights, retired pastor of St. Andrew Bobola Parish, Dudley, died Tuesday, December 8, 2015 in St. Vincent's Hospital on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. He leaves several nephews and nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces.
He was preceded in death by five sisters, Mary Szwach, Julia Penkala, Caroline Krasinski, Frances Stawasz and Rose Kralik. He was born in Dudley on December 9, 1928, the son of Frank and Catherine (Krystyniak) Szwach. He graduated from St. Joseph Elementary School in Webster, attended Dudley Junior High School and graduated from Bartlett High School in 1947. He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Saint Mary's College in Orchard Lake, MI in 1951 and completed his studies for the priesthood at Sts. Cyril & Methodius Seminary, also in Orchard Lake, in 1955.
He was ordained on May 21, 1955 in his home parish, Saint Joseph Church in Webster, by Bishop John J. Wright. His sacerdotal assignments were associate pastor at St. Mary's Church, Uxbridge, St. Aloysius Church, Gilbertville, Our Lady of Jasna Gora in Clinton and St. Joseph Church in Webster before being named temporary administrator of St. Stanislaus Church in Warren. He was named pastor of Our Lady of Jasna Gora Church in Clinton on July 1, 1973. On July 12, 1996, he was named pastor of Saint Andrew Bobola Church in Dudley.
He retired on July 1, 2014. Father Szwach served as the chaplain of the Knights of Columbus Council in Clinton. He was also the chaplain of the Serra Club of Southern Worcester County for many years. He had a great love for classical and polka music and played the violin and trumpet with the Grenadiers Orchestra while in high school and college. Fr. also played with "Fr. Pete's Orchestra" while assigned at Saint Joseph Church.
The funeral will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Wednesday, December 16, in Saint Joseph Basilica, 53 Whitcomb Street. The Most Reverend Robert J. McManus, Bishop of Worcester, will be the main concelebrant. The homilist will be Rev. Charles E. J. Borowski. Burial will be in Saint Joseph Garden of Peace. Visitation will be from 4:00 to 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, December 15, in the basilica, with a vigil service at 7:00 PM, with the Rev. William N. Sanders, dean of the Southern Worcester County Deanery, presiding. The homilist will be Msgr. Anthony Czarnecki, rector of St. Joseph Basilica. The Serra Club of Southern Worcester County will gather at 6:30 PM Tuesday to pray their ritual. Memorial donations may be made to the Retired Priests' Fund, Diocese of Worcester, 49 Elm St., Worcester, MA 01609.
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