Pastor installed at St. Martha in Sarasota

Father Jerzy “George” Susko, Society of Catholic Apostolate (SAC), was installed as Pastor of St. Martha Parish in Sarasota by Bishop Frank J. Dewane on Sept. 25, 2022.

Father Suszko was appointed as Pastor of the Parish in June following the retirement of longtime Pastor Father Fausto Stampiglia, SAC.

Bishop Dewane explained that the installation of a new Pastor is like a punctuation mark for the life of the Parish; a new era under the stewardship of Suszko.

“We do this installation because a Pastor is called upon to lead people closer to God through the areas of evangelization, worship of God and the caring for the poor,” Bishop Dewane said. “These are areas for which St. Martha Parish has a strong reputation and under Father George’s leadership, I know you will continue to do these well.”

The Bishop reminded the faithful of St. Martha of the need to support the new Pastor, and all of the priests, as they cannot do their daily ministry without such backing.

During the installation, the priest begins with selected words leading to the start of the Creed at which point he is joined by the faithful. At the end of the Creed, the new Pastor has extra lines which are exclusive for him. In addition, the Pastor takes an Oath of Fidelity to the Bishop and his successors; formalized by his placing his hand upon the Book of Gospels.

The ceremony concluded with the signing of documents by the Bishop, the new Pastor, and two official witnesses of the Parish community, who serve as witnesses for all of the parishioners. Those documents are split between the Parish and Diocese as well as the Pastor’s personnel records.

In support of Father Suszko, children in the Parish religious education program as well as students and faculty from St. Martha Catholic School and St. Mary Academy were present for Mass.

A welcoming reception was held for Father Suszko in the Parish Hall the evening before the installation.