CHESHIRE – Father Robert P. Ricciardi, 67, pastor of St. Bridget Parish, passed away on Nov. 17, 2013, at Yale-New Haven Hospital, surrounded by his family.
He was born on Sept. 5, 1946, in Waterbury, the son of the late Paul and Eleanor (Golden) Ricciardi. He attended Sacred Heart High School and then graduated from St. Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield. He earned a bachelor’s degree in 1971 from St. Bonaventure University in St. Bonaventure, N.Y., and graduated from Christ the King Seminary there in 1979.
He was ordained to the priesthood by Archbishop John F. Whealon on Aug. 10, 1979, at St. Mary Church in Derby.
In 1986, Father Ricciardi obtained certification as a licensed practical nurse. His assignments included serving the following Connecticut parishes: Holy Family in Enfield, St. Francis in New Haven, St. Peter in Torrington, Our Lady of Peace in East Hartford, St. Rose in East Hartford; Good Shepherd in Seymour, and finally, St. Bridget, where he served as parochial vicar from 1999 to 2005 and as pastor for the past eight years.
Father Ricciardi also served as chaplain of the New Haven Chapter of the Association of Catholic Nurses and as a Catholic chaplain at Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Father Ricciardi was a founding director of the Cheshire Community Food Pantry.
He is survived by his sisters, Jean Signori of Bronxville, N.Y., Judith Calabrese of Waterbury, and Nancy Wilson of Wolcott; nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, an aunt and several cousins.
A parish Mass was celebrated on Nov. 20 at St. Bridget in Cheshire, where Archbishop Henry J. Mansell celebrated a Mass of Christian Burial on Nov. 21. Burial followed in Calvary Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Cheshire Food Pantry, P.O. Box 457, Cheshire, CT 06410.