A Mass of Christian Burial for Msgr. Nicholas W. Sivillo, was celebrated Tuesday, April 14 at Our Lady of Hope Church, Middle Village, where he had been pastor from 1988 to 2009. He died on April 10 at the Bishop Mugavero Residence in Douglaston. He was 76.
Born in Brooklyn, he was baptized in St. Joseph’s Church. He attended Cathedral College, and Immaculate Conception Seminary, Huntington. He was ordained May 30, 1964 by Bishop Bryan J. McEntegart at St. James Pro-Cathedral, Downtown Brooklyn.
He served as an assistant at Nativity B.V.M., Ozone Park, 1964-75; St. Francis of Assisi, Astoria, 1975-82, and then was appointed to the Office of Catholic Education where he served as coordinator of family life, 1982-88.
He also has served on the Diocesan Priests’ Personnel Board, and as chaplain for the N.Y.S. Housing Police and the Sons of Italy.
From 2008 to 2013, he continued to reside at Our Lady of Hope rectory.
Bishop Raymond Chappetto was the main celebrant of the funeral Mass. Special concelebrants included Msgrs. Anthony Hernandez, George Schuster, John Strynkowski, Jamie Gigantiello, David Cassato, and Fathers Joseph Fonti, Kevin Abels, Michael Carrano, Dominick Cutrone and Robert Armato. Msgr. Otto L. Garcia preached the homily.
“He was a priest through and through,” Msgr. Garcia said.
“In everything he did, his priestly personality came through in his service and complete dedication to the needs of the people. “He was devoted to anything that had anything to do with the sacramental ministry to the people.
“He was especially dedicated to helping couples on their way to marriage. In all that he did, he rarely thought of himself, if at all. He always thought of people and their needs.”
Msgr. Garcia said he and Msgr. Sivillo were friends for more than 40 years.
“As a friend, he was always joyful. He found the humor in everything. He spoke his mind respectfully and he listened to what was being said.
“His basic personality never changed. He always kept the enthusiasm of a young priest. But I’m sure with time he grew wiser with the experiences that he had.
“He will always be remembered for being a very fine priest and I’m sure God has rewarded him.”
Msgr. Sivillo is survived by four siblings: Sister Mary Sivillo, C.S.J., Catherine Lafferty, Joseph Sivillo and his twin brother Anthony of Port Jefferson, L.I.
Burial was in St. John’s Cemetery, Middle Village.