Rev. James A Casciotti, S.J.

I was born in Altoona, PA in 1948 of 2nd generation Italian-American parents. My dad was a firefighter and my mom worked in a local factory. After college, I entered the Jesuits and was ordained a priest in 1978. Since then I have been a pastor three times and held a number of governance and administrative posts within the Order – the best one being a three-year stint at the Jesuit headquarters in Rome.

I love being a priest, especially preaching and being with all kinds of people, young and old.

I love opera (the Italian repertoire) and like to cook. I am a firm believer in one martini a day [“nerve medicine”. Sapphire. Olives. Up. NO vermouth].

I’m also so grateful for my Jesuit vocation, for all the people who mentored me and endured my various eccentricities-and respected me enough to offer constructive criticism when I [frequently] needed it. One of these people is Fr. Watters, my esteemed predecessor here at St. Ignatius.

Like Fr. Watters, I believe that diversity shared with love and respect enriches all of us and makes us more compassionate and creative. I see my role as deepening, extending, focusing what he has planted among us-and where necessary for increased fruit, pruning our ministries, and established ways of doing things.


Creative adaptation-always involves choosing some things and not choosing others. Failing to do this in a humble and prayerful way always leads to burnout and superficiality.

We begin by looking around us and reflecting on the wonderful things we are doing already. Mount Vernon is a neighborhood that:

  • is home to a growing number of young adults, many of whom are married with young children.
  • is literally between East and West Baltimore, in the midst of the African-American community.
  • is the cultural center of Baltimore, near Center Stage, Peabody, the Walters, and the BSO.

These three groups are priorities for us. We are already actively building relationships and working closely with them, as you will see when you explore the website. We are committed to focusing and deepening our companionship with and service to our neighbors

I believe we have an incredible future awaiting us – and I look forward to knowing you, serving you, and discerning together where the Lord wants to lead our community in the coming years.


By your side, In His Service.

James A. Casciotti