Death of The Most Reverend Nicola De Angelis, C.F.I.C.

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Bishop Emeritus of Peterborough, Nicola De Angelis, died on Friday, 16 June 2023, in his 85th year. He died early in the morning at the Villa Santa Margarita Hospital in Montefiascone (Viterbo, Italy). He served as the eleventh Bishop of the Diocese of Peterborough and was succeeded in 2014 by the Most Reverend William McGrattan. In 2017, the Most Rev. Daniel Miehm was installed as Bishop of Peterborough.

Bishop De Angelis was born in Pozzaglia Sabino, Italy, on 23 January 1939. In 1959, he entered the religious order of the Sons of the Immaculate Conception, a men’s religious institute of pontifical right whose members are commonly called Conceptionists. The congregation was founded in 1857, at the Santo Spirito hospital, in Rome by Luigi-Maria Monti, dedicating themselves to the care of the sick and the education of orphaned, abandoned and in need of assistance youth.

Bishop De Angelis immigrated to Canada in 1967 and commenced studies in theology at St. Augustine’s Seminary. On 6 December 1970, he was ordained a priest for his Order at St. Sebastian’s Parish in Toronto. Two years later, he was named pastor of the same parish. Furthermore, he became a Canadian citizen in 1975.

From 1976 to 1980, he was a trustee on the Metropolitan Toronto Separate School Board. In 1977, he was appointed by the Minister of Education to the Minister’s Advisory Committee for Education in Ontario.

In 1980, he graduated from the Toronto School of Theology with a Doctor of Ministry degree. In the same year, he was appointed Vice-Chancellor of Temporal Affairs for the Archdiocese of Toronto. Additionally, in 1984, His Excellency served on the Archdiocesan Senate of Priests, as well as, the Archdiocesan Italian Pastoral Commission.

He was appointed Treasurer General of his religious order in 1984 and moved to Rome to fulfill the duties of this position. Following, he served as Superior General of his order as of 1986.

On 27 April 1992, he was appointed as titular Bishop of Remesianna. He was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Toronto and consecrated in St. Michael’s Cathedral by the then-Archbishop, the Most Reverend Aloysius Ambrozic, on 24 June 1992.

On 28 December 2002, Bishop De Angelis was appointed the Bishop of Peterborough, where he served for 12 years, until 2014. Throughout which time, Bishop De Angelis was active in the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario.

His service to the Diocese of Peterborough was noted by his successor, The Most Reverend William McGrattan. In his Pastoral Letter upon Retirement, Bishop McGrattan wrote, “Bishop De Angelis thanked God for the following accomplishments during his tenure: the establishment of the Vocation, Evangelization and Youth Office; the communication and outreach to the diocese through the Catholic Herald; … He also saw that there remained some seeds or initiatives which were unfinished: the Family Life Ministry Office, the new Catholic College – Sacred Heart of Peterborough and the need to accompany many of the Diocesan Lay Movements.”

Peterborough’s current Bishop, The Most Reverend Daniel Miehm, said in a statement that during his service in Peterborough, Bishop De Angelis “was known as a strong and faithful shepherd with a kindly and fatherly style. He was concerned for the life of the clergy, the well-being of parish communities, and was very dedicated to Catholic education. This was evident in his pastoral presence at Catholic schools, both public and private, and in his founding of Sacred Heart College.”

The late bishop’s funeral took place this past Saturday, June 17, in Italy. The interment followed in his village, Pozzaglia Sabina (Rieti), Italy.

A memorial Mass at Peterborough’s Cathedral of St. Peter-in-Chains is planned.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Peterborough was established in 1882 by Pope Leo XIII through the union of the Vicariate of Northern Canada and the western part of the Diocese of Kingston. As an Episcopal see, the geographical area of the Diocese of Peterborough includes the districts of Muskoka and Parry Sound, the counties of Peterborough, Northumberland and the City of Kawartha Lakes, that portion of the Regional District of Durham which formally was the County of Durham, and five south western townships of the County of Haliburton.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Peterborough is currently led by His Excellency Most Reverend Daniel J. Miehm who also serves as Chancellor for Sacred Heart College.