Father Samuel J. Faiola, longtime pastor of St. Stephen Parish in Middleport, died Feb. 12, 2018. He was 92.
Born March 15, 1925, in Niagara Falls, to Leo and Mary (D'Arcangelo) Faiola, he attended St. Joseph School in Niagara Falls and the Diocesan Minor Seminary in Buffalo. He continued studies at Christ the King Seminary at St. Bonaventure University, where he received his bachelor's and master's degrees.
After his June 4, 1949 ordination, Father Faiola served as administrator of St. Mary Church in Cattaragus for one year, then was assigned to Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Buffalo, where he served as parochial vicar until June 1952.
That summer he served at Most Precious Blood Parish, Angola. In the fall he taught Latin, English and science at the Diocesan Minor Seminary. From 1957 to 1964 he wrote a weekly column for the diocesan newspaper.
In 1962, Bishop Joseph Burke assigned him to Rome for graduate studies in theology at the University of St. Thomas in Urbe. This was during the first two sessions of the Second Vatican Council. He received a doctorate in theology. Upon returning to the States, Father Faiola taught sacramental theology at the newly established St. John Vianney Seminary in East Aurora. In addition to lecturing, he served as director of Transitional Diaconate Program and led field education for seminary students.
In 1975, Father Faiola was assigned as pastor of St. Stephen Parish in Middleport, where he served for 20 years. He retired in June 1995. He continued presenting talks on various theological subjects, continued with the preparation and training of extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist for the Eastern Niagara Vicariate, was active in the Retrouvaille Program, and assisted in the celebration of parish liturgies.
He is survived by a sister, Nickie, a resident of Niagara Falls. He is predeceased by his parents and a brother, Father Rocco Faiola.
Visitation will take place at Holy Trinity Parish's St. Stephen's worship site, 21 Vernon St., Middleport, on Saturday, Feb. 17, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. immediately followed by the Mass of Christian Burial, which will be celebrated by Bishop Richard J. Malone.