About Our Clergy
Father John A. Koziol, OFM Conv. was ordained on July 9, 1988 by Bishop Joseph Maguire of the Diocese of Springfield, MA. His priestly studies took place at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, TX. His philosophical studies were completed at St. Hyacinth College and Seminary in Grandby, MA. After ordination, Fr. John served for a year at St. Stanislaus Basilica in Chicopee, MA and for two years at St. Stanislaus/St. Michael/St. Mary Churches in Shamokin, PA.
Fr. John was first assigned to St. Philip Benizi Church in 1991. He was part of the first "team" of Franciscans, invited to serve at St. Philip's by Archbishop James P. Lyke, OFM. Fr. John served as a Parochial Vicar from 1991 to 2000. He left St. Philip's in August of 2000 in order to pursue doctoral studies at the Catholic University of American in Washington, DC and graduated in 2005 with a Doctor of Ministry degree in Adult Spiritual Formation. While studying at CUA, he also served for eight years as a Formation Director of the student friars and postulants of his Order. In addition, he served for two years as a Campus Minister at CUA and also fount time to assist at a local parish on Sundays.
Fr. John was born in Holyoke, MA on January 22, 1957. He has a twin brother, an older brother and an older sister. His younger sister died in December of 2008. Fr. John's parents are both deceased. His father died in 1995 and his mother in June of 2008. Fr. John has always been close to his family and enjoys being an uncle to eleven nieces and nephews and a great-uncle to eleven nieces and nephews!
Returning to St. Philip's on June 16, 2009 and happy to be back, Fr. John looks forward to becoming involved in all aspects of the parish community. He hopes that his background in Spirituality and Adult Spiritual Formation will allow him to assist many people in growing in their relationship with God.
On August 22, 2010, Fr. John was installed as the ninth Pastor of St. Philip Benizi Church by Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory.
Fr. Paul Miskiewicz, OFM Conv. was born in Buffalo, NY on June 30, 1948. His family (father, mother and two sisters) are immigrants from Poland. Fr. Paul attended Bishop Ryan High School, which was administered and taught by the Franciscan Friars. He took part in many school activities and did part-time work around the Friary and school. After graduation from High School in 1966, Fr. Paul entered the Order of Friars Minor Conventual and completed his novitiate year in Ellicott City, Maryland. After professing simple vows, he attended St. Hyacinth College and Seminary in Granby, Massachusetts and professed solemn vows in August of 1970. In May of 1971, Fr. Paul graduated from St. Hyacinth’s with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, majoring in Philosophy. Part of his ministerial outreach was working with the mentally challenged at Belchertown State School. During his “apostolic year”, Fr. Paul entered into a teaching internship at St. Francis High School in Athol Springs, NY (outside of Buffalo). He resumed his studies at the theological institute, St. Anthony-on-Hudson, in Rensselaer, NY.
In March of 1975, Fr. Paul was ordained a deacon and served the parish communities of St. Stanislaus in Chicopee, MA, and of St. Thomas the Apostle, in Schenectady, NY. Upon completion of his studies, he was awarded a Master of Divinity Degree and was ordained to the Priesthood on May 15, 1976 by the Most Reverend Edwin Broderick, Bishop of Albany, NY.
After ordination, Fr. Paul was assigned to teach religious studies at Cardinal O’Hara High School in Tonawanda, NY, near Buffalo. He also served as chairman of the Theology Department and was moderator of various student organizations, including the Liturgical Folk Ensemble and the Drama Department. In 1981, Fr. Paul completed work at Loyola University in Chicago and was awarded a Masters Degree in Religious Education. In 1983, he was honored by the Diocese of Buffalo as one of the Outstanding Teachers of the Year.
In 1984, Fr. Paul was assigned to the parish of St. Stanislaus in Chelsea, MA – his first, full-time parish. Besides fulfilling ministerial responsibilities, he took care of the Youth Group, Seniors Club, and assisted in Religious Education programs in the parish school. From 1988 to 1991, he served as Parochial Vicar of Mater Dolorosa Parish in Holyoke, MA. Besides the usual ministries, Fr. Paul was heavily involved with the local Secular Franciscan fraternity, the Charismatic Renewal, and the adult Liturgical Ensemble.
From 1991–1996, Fr. Paul was Pastor of Our Lady of Czestochowa Parish in South Boston. One of the highlights of his administration was a visit from Nobel Peace Prize winner, Lech Walesa. In 1996, the Polish community of Boston honored Fr. Paul as Boston’s Polish-American Citizen of the Year. In 1996, Fr. Paul was assigned as Parochial Vicar to St. Adalbert Parish in Queens, NY. He became their Pastor from 2001–2011. His major concern during his time in Queens was the restoration of the parish church building and St. Adalbert Parochial School. Fr. Paul also served as chairman for the Parochial Concerns Commission for the Conventual Franciscans.
In the fall of 2010, circumstances within the Franciscan Order in Britain and Ireland necessitated an American friar to temporarily take the reins of leadership for that jurisdiction. Fr. Paul was assigned to that ministry. While waiting for his temporary visa to live in the UK, he served as full-time hospital chaplain in Johnstown, PA. Fr. Paul arrived in London in early January, 2011. His ministry was largely administrative, taking care of the Greyfriars (Conventual Franciscans) in Britain and Ireland. One of his great joys was interacting with the seminarians, and as acting Director of Vocations.
On December 18, 2013, Fr. Paul became St. Philip Benizi Parish’s newest Friar and Parochial Vicar.
Father Santo Cricchio, OFM Conv. was born on March 17, 1960 in Baltimore, Maryland, the younger of two children of first generation Italian Americans. After four years of study, he graduated from Western Maryland College (recently renamed McDaniel College) in May of 1982 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychobiology and a minor in Interpreting for the Deaf.
Following graduation, Friar Santo spent a year of service with the Missionary Servants of the Most Holy Trinity Volunteer Corp in the inner city of Cleveland, Ohio through the early summer of 1983. Later in the summer of that year, he entered the Franciscan Order (Order of Friars Minor Conventual) as a novice in Ellicott City, Maryland. After the traditional novitiate period of a year and a day of prayer, work, and discernment, he professed his First Vows of Poverty, Chastity, and Obedience on August 14, 1984.
For the next two years, Friar Santo completed Philosophy courses in preparation for his Priesthood studies. In the 1986-87 academic year, before continuing on to Theology studies, he completed a year of full-time ministry required by the Friars by teaching Biology at their school, St. Francis High School, outside of Buffalo, New York. After a month devoted to prayer and discernment, he professed his Solemn Vows as a Franciscan for the rest of his life on August 2, 1988. During the next four years, he completed his Theological and Pastoral studies in preparation for the Priesthood at the Washington Theological Union and received a Masters of Theology. On October 12, 1991, Friar Santo was ordained a priest in Baltimore, Maryland.
Immediately after ordination, Fr. Santo served as an Associate Pastor of Most Holy Trinity Church, a Latino parish in Brooklyn, New York. There, he was responsible for Religious Education and Youth Ministries. From 1996 to 2001, Fr. Santo served as Associate Pastor of St. Clement Mary Parish in Baltimore, Maryland, where he continued to assist with Religious Education and Youth Ministries. In the summer of 2001 through the spring of 2005, he served as one of five Associate Campus Ministers at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.
It was in the spring of 2000 that Friar Santo, together with his fellow friars, discerned his becoming a Reserve Chaplain for the United States Navy. Having accepted his commission as a Lieutenant in the Navy, he completed Chaplain School in the summer of 2000 at Newport, Rhode Island. His first year as a Navy Reserve Chaplain was spent as a multi-force supporter of the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, the Naval Academy, and the National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda. In October of 2001, Fr. Santo was transferred to a NAVSEA unit in support of the IG of the Navy. Through the winter of 2004, his Annual Training has included Pastoral Care at NNMC Bethesda in 2002, NSA Bahrain in 2003, and sea duty aboard USS Lake Champlain in 2004.
In early 2005, Fr. Santo was transferred to the Marine Expeditionary Religious Force (MEF REL) in support of the Marines at Quantico, VA. In the summer of 2005, he was deployed in service to Operation Enduring Freedom at Joint Task Force Base in Djibouti, Africa for nearly a year. Following service to the Marine Corp in 2007, he began serving as a Navy Chaplain to the US Coast Guard, ministering in Alaska, California, and the Coast Guard’s First District (New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Massachusetts). He completed two tours with the Coast Guard just before his arrival to St. Philip Benizi Parish on September 23, 2014. In 2008, he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Commander (equivalent to a Major in ground forces).
Upon his return from east Africa, Fr. Santo was appointed Pastor of what was to become the merge of a tri-lingual parish of Most Holy Trinity-St. Mary in Brooklyn, New York. The parish, located in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, is largely Latino, with native English-speaking and Polish-speaking communities. As of October 2014, Fr. Santo will have completed thirty years of religious profession as a Franciscan Friar, twenty-three of which as a friar-priest and fourteen as a Navy Reserve Chaplain.
Father Peter Tymko, OFM Conv. was born on January 14, 1967 in Legnica, Poland. After graduation from High School in 1987, Fr. Peter joined the Order of Friars Minor Conventual and studied at the Franciscan Seminary in Krakow. After the third grade, he was transferred to Czechoslovakia and continued his studies at St. Charles University of Prague. Fr. Peter was ordained to the Priesthood on February 12, 1994. He then continued his ministry as a Parochial Vicar, Pastor and Guardian at several places in the Czech Republic (Opava, Brno, and Jihlava). In 2003, Fr. Peter went to Uganda and ministered for three years as a Franciscan missionary in the newly opened mission in Kakooge. After that, he returned to Poland and worked as a hospital Chaplain in Wroclaw, Poland, as well as a Director of the Pastoral Center for English Speakers.
Fr. Peter arrived in the USA in 2008 and began his ministry in a Franciscan Parish, at St. Stanislaus Basilica in Chicopee, MA. After two years of ministry in New England, he was transferred to Washington, D.C. and worked at The Catholic University of America in Campus Ministry as an Associate Chaplain for Graduate and Law School Students. From September 2011 to July 2015, Fr. Peter served as Parochial Vicar at St. Margaret Mary Parish in Algonquin, IL. He was then assigned to St. Philip Benizi Parish and arrived in September 2015 to begin his ministry as Parochial Vicar.
Vatican II initiated the restoration of the role of the Permanent Deacon in the Church. The Deacon is ordained by the Bishop to serve within the Bishops' diocese.
The assigned deacons to St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church are: Reverend Mr. Peter Swan, Reverend Mr. Etienne Rodriguez, Reverend Mr. John Halloran, Reverend Mr. Gregory Pecore, Reverend Mr. Leonard Chambliss, Reverend Mr. Matias Casal, and Reverend Mr. Bob Rich. They assist the priests during Mass with specific functions that include the Penitential Rite, the Prayers of the Faithful, Proclamation of the Gospel and Preaching.
The Deacons generally preach on the third Sunday of each month. They also celebrate Communion Services during the week when necessary, prepare couples and witness marriages, prepare families for infant baptisms, and baptize these infants.
In our parish, the Deacons can be called upon to lead Penance Services, Benediction, Stations of the Cross and other non-Eucharistic liturgies. Generally, the Deacons assist in the parish ministries where the Pastor has identified a need. The Deacons at St. Philip Benizi Church minister to people in hospitals, prisons, nursing homes, to shut-in parishioners, and wherever the need arises.
Conventual Franciscan Friars
Fr. John Koziol, OFM Conv.
Fr. Santo Cricchio, OFM Conv.
Fr. Paul Miskiewicz, OFM Conv.
Fr. Peter Tymko, OFM Conv.
Bro. Roger Colton, OFM Conv.
Rev. Mr. Peter Swan, Sr.
Rev. Mr. Etienne Rodriguez
Rev. Mr. John Halloran
Rev. Mr. Gregory Pecore
Rev. Mr. Leonard Chambliss
Rev. Mr. Matias Casal
Rev. Mr. Bob Rich