Father Richard J. Butler Pilot file photo
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Father Richard J. Butler died Sept. 30 at the archdiocese's Regina Cleri residence for retired priests. He was 76 years old.
Born May 8, 1936, Father Butler was one of five children of Matthew P. and Katherine E. (Morrison) Butler of West Roxbury.
Raised in West Roxbury, he graduated from Boston Latin School. He went on to attend Holy Cross College and Cardinal O'Connell Seminary prior to entering St. John's Seminary where he received his A.B. and M.Div. degrees. He later earned a M.A. degree from Catholic University and a D.Min. degree from Boston University.
He was ordained -- along with his twin brother, Father Robert J. Butler -- on Feb. 2, 1962 by Cardinal Richard Cushing, and offered his first Mass on Feb. 5, at Our Lady of Mercy Church in Belmont where his family had moved while he was in the seminary.
His first assignment after ordination was to St. Mary Parish in Foxborough (1962-1966). He later served at Blessed Sacrament, Cambridge (1966-1970) and at Our Lady of Sorrows, Sharon (1970-1975).
From 1975 to 1978, he served as director of the Center for Pastoral Liturgy at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.
Returning to the archdiocese in 1978, he served as chaplain at Archbishop Williams High School in Braintree. He also served in-residence at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in South Boston and was parochial vicar at Holy Family Parish in Rockland (1981-85).