Evening Prayer Service
Obituary of Rev. Msgr. Robert M. Diachek
On Tuesday, June 18th Msgr. Robert M Diachek went home to the God he loved and served so faithfully. Msgr. Diachek was born in Yonkers, NY, the son of the late Michael and Helen (Malkowski) Diachek and brother to the late Dolores H. Diachek (Smith). He is survived by nephews Roger C. Smith and Richard M. Smith, a niece Robin Kay (Smith) Pfiefer, all of Texas and several cousins, among them Lawrence P. Janusz of Bronxville and Ed Cyran of Mahopac.
Msgr. Diachek attended St. Mary College Seminary in Kentucky, St. Francis Seminary in Loretto, PA, Immaculate Conception Seminary where he received his Masters in Divinity and St. Mary Seminary-University in Baltimore where he obtained his Doctorate of Ministry.
Ordained on May 29, 1971 at St. John the Baptist Cathedral for the Diocese of Paterson by Bishop Lawrence B. Casey, Msgr. Diachek celebrated his first Mass on Pentecost in his home parish of St. Casimir, Yonkers. His first assignment upon ordination was St. Vincent’s in Stirling. Having studied nursing at the Montefiore Hospital School of Nursing prior to entering the seminary, Msgr. Diachek’s medical and priestly knowledge were ideally suited to the healing role he played as a Certified Chaplain and Chaplain Supervisor, a ministry he exercised first at Morristown Memorial Hospital and then for 18 years at Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital in Morris Plains. His dedication, knowledge, and experience were recognized when he was elected Regional Director for New Jersey-Pennsylvania National Association of Catholic Chaplains. His pastoral ministry led him to be appointed Director of Health Care Ministry and then Vicar for Deacons for the Diocese of Paterson. In the latter role, Msgr. Diachek coordinated the educational and pastoral formation of men preparing for ordination as deacons in service to the diocese.
Msgr. Diachek, or Fr. Bob as he was lovingly called, experienced a great deal of suffering and setbacks in his battle with diabetes. He underwent multiple surgeries, hospitalizations, and rehabilitation at numerous facilities over the years. Throughout he displayed great courage, deep faith, and an infectious humor. Even as a patient he exercised his ministry of care and compassion, often reaching out to others in the wards and facilities where he himself underwent treatment and encountered an uncertain future. He was indeed a wounded healer throughout his life who loved his calling and who dedicated his gifts to the wellbeing of those among whom he ministered.
Fr. Bob expressed gratitude for the many health care professionals who tended to his body and to the numerous laity who cheered his soul, especially the parishioners of St. Luke’s in Long Valley and Resurrection Parish in Randolph where he had ministered in his retirement. He died peacefully at Nazareth Village in Chester where many of his retired brother priests reside and where the staff lovingly cared for him.
Reception of the Body will take place on Sunday, June 23rd at 3:00pm followed by Visitation from 3:00pm to 5:00pm and 7:00 to 9:00pm at St. Luke Parish, 265 West Mill Road, Long Valley, NJ. A Vigil Service will be celebrated at 7:30pm. The funeral Mass will be celebrated on Monday at 11:00am at St. Luke Parish with the Most Rev. Arthur J. Serratelli, Bishop of the Diocese of Paterson, presiding. Entombment will follow at Gate of Heaven Mausoleum in East Hanover, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement Graymoor, 40 Franciscan Way, Garrison, NY 10524.
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