EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Haverhill

May 25, 2010

Bradford parishioners cheer on new priest

HAVERHILL — The Rev. Guy Sciacca has been around.

He has taught French and English in Stoneham schools; worked as a financial administrator at Harvard University for 16 years; and studied for the priesthood in the Dominican order quite a few years ago.

Last Saturday, Sciacca, who served as a parish intern at Sacred Hearts Church in Bradford during his third year at Blessed John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, was ordained a priest at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston. About 30 Sacred Hearts parishioners attended his ordination.

Camille Peters, music director at Sacred Hearts, described Sciacca as "very spiritual. He is so loving and giving."

During his internship at Sacred Hearts, she said "he listened to everybody."

People with problems could go to Sciacca and he would guide them "in the right direction," Peters said.

"He affected me spiritually," she said. "He's a beautiful man."

Mary Laverdure of Groveland said Sciacca's maturity and experience will make him an excellent priest. While serving at Sacred Hearts, she said, Sciacca interviewed parishioners about the merger of the Bradford parish with St. Patrick Church in Groveland.

"He got to know the people right away," she said.

Sciacca is originally from the North End of Boston. He also has resided in Melrose and Medford.

Years ago, Sciacca began studying for the priesthood with the Dominicans. He left that order, but apparently the vocational flame was still burning. He enrolled at Blessed John XXIII, which trains seminarians over age 25 — delayed vocations — and studied there for four years.

"I was called back," he said. Sciacca's first assignment is at St. John the Evangelist Church in Chelmsford. He's pleased about that, he said, because during his stay at Sacred Hearts in 2008, "I fell in love with the Merrimack Valley."

"I look forward to serving the people of God and hope that I may be a good and humble priest, with God's grace," he said.

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