Father Gerard Petringa, former Belmont and Norwood pastor retires
Father Gerard Petringa, known to everyone as Father "Gerry," was born on May 22, 1952, in Boston to the late Nicolina (Mazzone) and Dominic Petringa. One of four children, he grew up alongside sister Theresa of Marshfield and brothers Joseph and Michael of Plymouth, attending two Lexington public schools: Harrington Grammar School and Lexington High School, from where he graduated.
Beginning his post-secondary education at Merrimack College in North Andover, he would spend 10 years working in the mechanical construction industry -- becoming along the way a master pipefitter and a member of Boston Pipefitters' Local 537 -- before transferring to the Seminary College division at St. John Seminary.
As he prepared for the priesthood, Father Petringa earned his bachelor's degree in philosophy in 1984; he followed this degree with a master of divinity in 1988 and a master's degree in church history and social teaching, which he completed in 1989. Having served his deacon assignment at Our Lady of Lourdes, Jamaica Plain, he was ordained on June 25, 1988, by Cardinal Bernard Law and offered his first Mass the following day, June 26, at St. Brigid Church in Lexington.
His first parish assignment took him to the seaside town of Swampscott, where he was the parochial vicar of St. John the Evangelist from July 1988 to September 1989. His second assignment at St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Woburn was longer, from 1989 to 1993, after which he moved on to another north shore parish -- this one, St. Mary of the Annunciation Parish in Danvers (1993-1994).
In 1995, after a brief period as the temporary parochial vicar at St. John the Baptist Parish in Quincy, he became the official holder of the position; he would remain in the abovementioned parish until 2002.
After almost 15 years of serving in the capacity of parochial vicar at various parishes on both the north and south shores of the archdiocese, Father Petringa became the pastor at St. Luke Parish in Belmont -- the lengthiest assignment he would have as it lasted 11 years. Being one of several parishes in the area serving sections of more than one city, Father Petringa's parishioners at St. Luke's came not only from Belmont but from Waltham and Watertown.
His following parish assignment took him to the neighboring town of Lexington, where he served as parochial vicar at St. Brigid Church from 2013 to 2014.
In 2014, Father Petringa, a member of the Presbyteral Council, was named by Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley as episcopal vicar for the North Region, succeeding Bishop Peter Uglietto. In making the announcement, Cardinal O'Malley had said: "Father Petringa brings significant experience as parochial vicar and pastor at parishes throughout the archdiocese to this new assignment. Also, as a member of the Presbyteral Council, Father Petringa has consulted on many archdiocese's initiatives of recent years, including the planning and implementation for Disciples in Mission."
With his episcopal vicar appointment concluding in 2016, he was selected as the new administrator of Sacred Hearts Parish in Malden, succeeding Father Mark DeAngelis, who was recovering from spinal surgery, before transferring to Norwood in 2017. There, Father Petringa was the administrator of St. Timothy Parish, which was in Phase V of the collaborative model, until his retirement in June 2022.
His more than 30 years of being a priest have not only been marked by a tireless, genuine service to his parishioners but also by an active engagement in the work of the Archdiocesan Clergy Health and Retirement Trust as a former member of the Clergy Trust Board of Trustees and, presently, as a Trustee Emeritus.
Father Petringa will spend his retirement years at Regina Cleri Residence, Boston, a retirement home for senior priests supported by the Clergy Trust.