WESTON, Mass. — Father Anthony R. Picariello, S.J., died peacefully in the early morning of Oct. 17, 2019. Beloved son of the late Louis and Katherine (Iacono) Picariello. Brother of the late Louis Picariello. Also survived by nieces and nephews as well as his many Jesuit Brothers.
He was born on May 30, 1930, in Brighton, a mostly Irish section of Boston, west of downtown, near the cardinal’s residence and the archdiocesan seminary. Father Picariello later said that, growing up, he thought he was Irish, he knew so few kids from Italian families.
Father Picariello had started grade school a year earlier than usual, so he was only 16 when he graduated from high school. He took business and accounting courses at Bentley and Northeastern and, in 1951, left home to study accounting at the University of Omaha, chosen because he could live with his aunt there, who had been recently discharged from the Navy. In Omaha, on his brother Louie’s advice, he entered a Naval Reserve program. When he returned to Boston to work in the accounting department of a company that made gyroscopes for jet fighters, his Naval Reserve assignment was in intelligence work, monitoring Russian messages in code.
A group of friends in the decoding project invited him to join them on a weekend retreat at Campion Hall, the Jesuit retreat house in North Andover. There he decided he wanted to become a Jesuit brother.
On Aug. 2, 1956 went to the New York Province novitiate at Poughkeepsie, N.Y. He took first vows in 1959, and that summer the New England men moved to the new Shadowbrook.
In 1961, he became the treasurer at Weston College.
In the spring of 1967, Brother Picariello was assigned to Bishop Connolly High School in Fall River, where Jesuits had just taken over responsibility for the school. There he was minister and treasurer of the community and installed an accounting system for the community and, subsequently, the school. He was there for seven years (1967-1974), interrupted by six months in the brothers’ tertianship at Clarkson, Mich. In 1974, he was asked to go to Boston College High School as treasurer.
Feeling a call to the priesthood, Brother Picariello began four years of study in 1976 at Pope John the 23rd Seminary, for older candidates for priesthood, in Weston. He earned an M.Div. and, along with his theology studies, a business degree from Boston College. In June 1980, he was ordained to the priesthood during a province assembly at the College of the Holy Cross.
Over the following 20 years, Father Picariello was involved in parish work in Newton, St. Julia’s Parish in Weston, and Key Largo, Fla.
In 2008, he moved to the assisted-living section of Campion Center. His health began a long decline.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Oct. 22, 2019 in the Chapel of the Holy Spirit, Campion Center. Interment followed at Campion Center Cemetery. Donations may be made to the Jesuit Community, Campion Center, 319 Concord Road, Weston, Mass., 02493 to support its ministry of care for elderly and infirm Jesuits.