FR. JEROME SIWEK DIES
PASTOR EMERITUS OF ST. RICHARD CHURCH
Chicago, IL (February
12, 2004) – Fr. Jerome Siwek, ordained by Cardinal Stritch
in 1956, died Feb. 11 at age 73. Fr. Siwek died from an apparent
heart attack at St. Benedict Home, Niles, where he resided. He was
the pastor emeritus of St. Richard Church, a parish he served for
A Chicago native, Fr. Siwek attended SS. Peter and Paul school.
He entered Quigley Preparatory Seminary in 1949 and graduated from
St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, where he did post-graduate
studies. Ordained in 1956, Fr. Siwek’s first assignment was
as associate pastor at St. Simeon, Bellwood.
After serving nine years at St. Simeon, Fr. Siwek served as associate
pastor at St. Roman Parish from 1965-66; Our Lady of Knock, Calumet
City, from 1966-70; St. Martin, from 1970-72; and at St. Constance
Fr. Siwek served as pastor at St. Josaphat from 1975-76, and then
as associate pastor at Immaculate Heart of Mary (N. Spaulding) from
1976-81. He was named pastor at St. Richard Church in 1981, a position
he held until his retirement in 1999. During his tenure at St. Richard,he
also held the position of Dean of that deanery from 1990-96. Fr.
Siwek was named pastor emeritus of St. Richard when he retired.
“He always supported the seminarians,” said Fr. Thomas
Bernas, current pastor at St. Richard. “When I was a seminarian
I had an internship with him. He supported me all through the seminary
and then vested me at my ordination.”
According to Fr. Bernas, Fr. Siwek was proud of remodeling St.
Richard to conform with the changes of Vatican II.
Fr. Siwek also liked to write music. He translated English liturgical
songs into Polish and had them published.
Fr. Siwek’s body will lie in state from 2-9 p.m. on Friday,
Feb. 13, at St. Richard Church, 5032 S. Kostner Ave., Chicago. The
funeral Mass will be held at 9:30 a.m., Feb. 14, at St. Richard.
Interment will be at Resurrection Cemetery, Chicago.