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Sudden passing of Fr. Stephen
Question from Colin B. Donovan, STL on 9/27/2010:

It is with great regret that I report the death of Fr. Stephen Torraco, who has moderated this Forum since its inception in 1997. Father was among the most faithful and prolific of our moderators. May the Lord reward his generosity, not only in this service but in his pastoral work as a priest, educator and author. Please see his obituary below.

Answer by EWTN, VP for Theology on 9/27/2010:

Rev. Stephen F. Torraco, Ph.D., 56, Associate Professor of Theology at Assumption College, died suddenly on Wednesday, September 22, 2010 at the UMass Medical Center after being stricken ill at home.

Born in Cambridge, MA, he is the son of Clorinda (DiMare) Torraco of Westborough and the late Italo Torraco. He attended St. Columbkille School and graduated from Xaverian Missionaries High School. Fr. Stephen also graduated from St. Francis de Sales Seminary in Wisconsin, earned his Masters and Doctorate at Boston College and his Masters of Divinity at Harvard University.

Fr. Stephen was ordained in 1980 and has been a priest of the Diocese of Abaetetuba, in northeastern Brazil. After his ordination to the priesthood, he served in parishes in the Boston Archdiocese while working on his Doctorate in Theology at Boston College. Since 1988 Fr. Torraco has been Associate Professor of Theology at Assumption College, Worcester, MA. He was the Executive Director of the Society for the Study of the Magisterial Teaching of the Church (ssmtc.org). He was an instructor in Theology as well as Chaplain for one of SSMTC's affiliates, the cyberspace based at Regina Coeli Academy (RCA), and a member of the faculty of the Catholic Distance University (CDU) in Hamilton, VA. Fr. Torraco served on the Board of Catholic Experts of Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), answering moral theology questions from people around the world at EWTN"s web site on a daily basis. He also served as a consultant for the Pope Paul VI Institute in Omaha, and for the Cardinal Kung Foundation in Connecticut. He was the author of various books and articles in moral theology, medical ethics, the social teaching of the Catholic Church and the spiritual life.

In addition to his mother, Fr. Stephen is survived by two brothers, Daniel J. Torraco of W. Wareham and Ronald A. Torraco. He is also survived by three nieces, Jennie, Nicole and Mary Torraco.

Fr. Torraco's funeral Mass will be held on Tuesday, September 28, at 10:30 A.M. in St. Luke the Evangelist Church, 70 West Main St., Westborough, celebrated by the Rev. Francis Signorelli, SX, rector of the Xaverian Seminary in Holliston. Burial will follow in St. Luke's Cemetery. There are no calling hours.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Xaverian Missionaries, P.O. Box 5857, 100 Summer St., Holliston, MA 01746.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Rand-Harper-Pickering Westborough Funeral Home, 62 West Main St., Westborough.

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