FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 23, 2020
Msgr. David Cassato, Pastor of St. Athanasius Church in Bensonhurst,
Named Vicar for Catholic Schools
The Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Bishop of Brooklyn, is pleased to announce the appointment of Monsignor David Cassato, Pastor of the Parish of St. Athanasius-St. Dominic Church in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn, as the new Vicar for Catholic Schools, effective immediately.
“I selected Monsignor David Cassato for this key role because he is enthusiastic and has been a true champion of Catholic education. He has a great ability to connect with people and is patient. These attributes will help him greatly as he works collaboratively with the office of Superintendent-Catholic School Support Services, Catholic academies, Boards of Directors, and parishes,” said Bishop DiMarzio.
“Catholic schools are our most beautiful and prized gems, as teaching the faith to our children is critical. We have so much to offer children of all backgrounds, but especially immigrant children, who we have been educating for years. Diversity is in our DNA here in the Diocese, and our students leave our Catholic schools with the important values we hold dear, a foundation for success long after they graduate,” said Monsignor Cassato.
Promoting Diocesan Catholic schools is one of the roles for the Vicar for Catholic Schools. Monsignor Cassato will also serve on the member board of all Catholic Academies in Brooklyn and Queens, provide guidance to the Pastors of those Academies, and work to engage donors in supporting the mission of Catholic Education through Futures in Education scholarships.
“I believe as we look to grow our schools, the biggest outreach we need to make is in the Hispanic community. At the same time, we must look to grow our scholarship programs so we can offer the opportunity of Catholic education to as many students as possible who need tuition assistance. The Catholic education we offer in our schools and academies is of the highest quality, and I will continue to promote that message,” said Monsignor Cassato.
Ordained a priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn on May 27, 1972, Monsignor Cassato has served at Saint Rita’s in Long Island City and Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Williamsburg, where he opened a middle school and oversaw the merger of two other schools. In June 2001, he was appointed a New York City Police Chaplain and promoted in 2017 to Deputy Chief Chaplain.
Monsignor Cassato has been Pastor at St. Athanasius since 2001. He was a former chaplain at Bishop Kearney High school and is the Diocesan Coordinator of Ministry to Italian Immigrants. Monsignor Cassato is also Administrator of St. Dominic Catholic Church in Bensonhurst since 2015.
“Monsignor Cassato is stepping into this role at a uniquely challenging time for our Catholic schools. I am confident he will be successful because he handles his multiple responsibilities with effect and grace. His experience will provide him the opportunity also to be a great leader in this new role,” said Bishop DiMarzio.
“We have experienced a pandemic this spring like never before. In the face of that, our Catholic schools in Brooklyn and Queens surpassed expectations with very successful remote learning programs. While we see the online lessons work in our schools, I believe that as we look to start the new school year in September, it is absolutely critical that we open our network of Catholic schools. Children learn best in the classroom. Of course, a lot is going to depend on the decisions made by government and health officials,” said Monsignor Cassato.
Monsignor Cassato holds a Master of Science degree in Education from Mercy College and a Master of Divinity from Niagara University. He succeeds Auxiliary Bishop James Massa, who was recently appointed the Rector of St. Joseph’s Seminary and College in Dunwoodie, New York.
The photo of Monsignor David Cassato is attached.