BRISTOL — Rev. Salvatore S. Caputo, a Columban missionary priest, died on November 16, 2020 at St. Elizabeth Manor, Bristol, R.I. Father spent his missionary life in Korea. He was born on October 20, 1949 in Queens,New York. His parents were Salvatore and Ann (Rumore) Caputo.
He attended public schools in Mineola, N.Y., and graduated from Chaminade High School in 1967. He was among the first Columban students to graduate from the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN. Father Caputo was also the first Columban to graduate from the Weston School of Theology in Cambridge, MA, with a Master of Divinity Degree in 1975. Father Caputo then served an internship year of counseling and pastoral care at Sts. Peter and Paul/St. Vincent Parish, South Boston, MA.
Father Caputo was ordained a priest on May 22, 1976 at Corpus Christi Parish, Mineloa, N.Y., by the Most Rev. Vincent J. Baldwin, Auxiliary Bishop of Rockville Center and appointed to Korea that same year. It was the beginning of his long-term love of Korea and the Korean people. He studied at the Korean language in Seoul and early in his mission career became interested in family ministry.
In 1988, he returned to New York and studied at Fordham University Graduate School of Religion and Religious Education, receiving an Advanced Professional Diploma (APO) in Family Ministry. In March 1989 he returned to Korea. Three years later he began a doctoral program at Fordham in social welfare, and found a pastoral placement at the Church of St. Gabriel in the Bronx.
Having received his Ph.D., by November of 1995, he was back in Korea. Father Caputo’s last assignment in Korea was a unique chaplaincy at the bus station in Seoul. Tragically, he suffered a brain hemorrhage in 1998 and returned to the Columban Fathers’ U.S. headquarters for recuperation. In 2011, he retired to Bristol, R.I.
He is survived by his brother, Dr. Michael Caputo, of Smithtown, NY; sister-in-law Janet; nephew Christopher and niece Pamela Caputo. Following a Funeral Mass at St. Columban’s Chapel in Bristol, he will be cremated and his ashes taken to Long Island, N.Y., for future burial with his parents at Holy Rood Cemetery, Westbury, N.Y.