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Rev. Joseph A. Escobar, Pastor

Rev. Joseph A. Escobar was raised in East Providence and attended the public school system there. He graduated from Our Lady of Providence Preparatory Seminary on June 13, 1978, and from Providence College on May 17, 1982 with a Bachelor’s degree in mathematics, cum laude. In August, 1982, he entered the Dominican Order and professed his vows on August 14, 1983.

He did his graduate studies in theology at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, DC. He received a Master of Divinity degree in May 1987; he also received a Master’s degree in Theology from Providence College in 1998. He was ordained to the priesthood by BIshop Francis Roque, DD, at St. Dominic Church in Washington, DC, on May 20, 1988.

He served as an associate pastor at St. Dominic Church, Youngstown, Ohio, Saint Catherine of Siena Church in New York City, St. Pius V Church in Providence, and St. Elizabeth Church, Bristol, RI.  On June 28, 1997, Bishop Gelineau appointed him administrator of Saint Anthony Church, Pawtucket, RI.  On June 30, 2001, he was named pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Church, Providence.

Father Escobar is chaplain to the Fatima Council, Knights of Columbus and a spiritual director at the diocesan seminary.  Presently, he is also the Moderator of the Council of Priests and a member of the diocesan College of Consultors.  In August, 2006, he was appointed by Bishop Tobin as the chaplain to the Rhode Island Police Chiefs Association.

Rev. Antonio M. Paiva, Pastor Emeritus:

Father Antonio M. Paiva was born on December 26, 1925, in Povoção, São Miguel, the son of José and Ermelina Paiva. Fr. Paiva was the fifth of seven children.  At the age of twelve, he entered the minor seminary in Angra, Terceira. At the invitation of Bishop Keough, he came to the United States in 1946 to complete his seminary studies at Saint Mary Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland.  He was ordained to the priesthood on June 11, 1949 by Bishop Russell J. McVinney in the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Providence, Rhode Island.

His first assignment was as the associate pastor of Saint Anthony parish in Pawtucket, where he served for fifteen years 1949 to 1964.  His next assignment was as the assistant pastor of Saint Francis Xavier parish in East Providence 1964 to 1965, then as the associate pastor of Saint Anthony parish in West Warwick 1965 to 1972.

In 1972, Bishop Louis E. Gelineau, appointed Father Paiva as the pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Church in Providence, where he served faithfully for twenty nine years.

Fr. Paiva retired on June 29, 2001.

During his years as pastor, Father Paiva has fostered the family spirit of the parish.  The Rosary garden, with the statue of Our Lady of Fatima surrounded by a heart-shaped rosary, is indicative of Father Paiva’s devotion to Our Lady and to his ideal that this parish community be “a parish with a heart.”  Through his years of service, Father Paiva has generously opened his heart to all, young and old, in our parish community and in our neighborhood.  His faith-filled ministry, and his meticulous care of the church and the parish properties, will long be remembered.

In his retirement, we pray that God will give Father Paiva, our pastor and our friend, many healthy and happy years to enjoy the rewards of his labors.

“Well done, good and faithful servant.”  Ad multos annos!

Administrative Staff:

Gilberta C. Donley, Secretary Elisa Thibeault, CCD Coordinator
Mary E. Pesare, Bookkeeper Joseph A. Tavares, Custodian
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