Fr. Robinson Was Active in Haitian, Hispanic Ministries

Father Robinson

A Mass of Christian Burial for Father Robert M. Robinson was celebrated March 19 at SS. Joachim and Anne Church, Queens Village, where he was pastor from 2007 to 2017. He died March 13 at Sea Crest Rehabilitation Center, Coney Island. He was 74.

Auxiliary Bishop Octavio Cisneros was the main celebrant of the funeral Mass.

Special concelebrants included Msgr. Paul Jervis, and Fathers Nixon Jean-Francois and Jean-Pierre Ruiz, who preached the homily.

Born in Brooklyn, he was baptized at Sacred Heart Slovak Church in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. He attended Brooklyn College; Cathedral College; and Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington. He was ordained May 31, 1969 by Bishop Francis J. Mugavero at St. James Pro-Cathedral, Brooklyn.

After summer language studies at Catholic university in Ponce, Puerto Rico, he was assigned to St. Barbara’s parish, Bushwick, where he served for two years.

He also was a parochial vicar at St. Gabriel, East Elmhurst, 1971-81; St. Sebastian, Woodside, 1981-86; St. John the Evangelist, Brooklyn, 1986-88; and Holy Cross, Flatbush, 1988-93.

From 1993 to 2007, he was pastor of St. Patrick’s, Long Island City.

He retired to senior priest status last year and had recently been serving as parochial vicar at St. Francis of Assisi-St. Blaise, Crown Heights.

Father Robinson also was active in the Charismatic Renewal, the Hispanic and Haitian apostolates, community organizations and biblical studies.

Father Jean-Francois was assigned as a newly ordained to SS. Joachim and Anne with Father Robinson.

“When I first came to the parish to meet Father Robinson, I was nervous,” he recalled. “But he was waiting at the door for me and embraced me. Over the years working with him, I always looked to him for advice.

“He visited the school every day to help in anyway he could. He had such a love for the Haitian people and I always felt welcomed.

“After the earthquake, I was stuck in Haiti and the diocese was fighting to get me back and Father Robinson called me every day to say he was praying and fighting for me.

“He always showed such love. I was honored to celebrate his last rites and I am forever grateful to have known such a great man.”

Father Robinson is survived by his sister, Carol Robinson of Brooklyn.

Burial was in St. John’s Cemetery, Middle Village.

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