San Diego’s Italian community grieves on the death of their kind, loving, and gentle soul priest, Father Louis Maria Solcia. He was the associate pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church in Little Italy, who recently passed away at 91.
Remembering Father Louis Maria Solcia
On Thursday, Mar. 2, Father Louis Maria Solcia passed away at 91 at the church’s residence. People close to the pastor said his legacy would continue through the church, a pillar of the Italian-American community since it was founded in 1925. According to The San Diego Union-Tribune, Father Solcia was more than a religious “father” to many members of San Diego’s Italian community; he was an actual father figure.
Since 1990, he has served as associate pastor at Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church in Little Italy, making him an important figure in the neighborhood. Many people fondly referred to him as “Father Louie,” He was famous for his lengthy confession lines and kind, gentle nature.
Just after his passing, the Little Italy community members gathered to honor and celebrate the life of the cherished pastor. On Wednesday, Mar. 8, there was a gathering at the church of more than 100 people who came to pray, sing, and pay their respects.
One of Father Louie’s spiritual daughters, Crystalina Evert, said that Father Louie was a birth father figure to them; he was not hesitant to tell them the harsh realities of life, but he did so with a lot of love. Since he made an impact on their lives in some way, every one of these individuals is in the vigil. He had an air about him that inspired others to strive to be a better version of themselves.
Moreover, as they joined the clergy in reciting prayers inside the chapel, many parishioners clasped their rosaries tightly and kept their eyes closed. The chapel was decorated with murals, stained glass, and sculptures. Some prayed in Italian. The funeral Mass for Solcia, which was held on Thursday morning and presided over by Auxiliary Bishop Ramón Bejarano, was attended by an increasing number of parishioners.
As per Our Lady of the Rosary San Diego, CA. Fr. Louis was born in the Italian town of Cologno Monzese. He attended Loyola Marymount University for his Master of Education degree and Lehigh University for his Master of Arts in Social Studies degree. On Sept. 29, 1950, Fr. Louis made his solemn profession of vows to become a Cleric Regular of St. Paul (Barnabite). On Dec. 8, 1957, he and Fr. Grancini went through the ordination process to become priests. In addition to his role as Superior in several different Barnabite communities, Fr. Louis has served as pastor at two Canadian parishes run by the Barnabites. Since 1990, he has been providing pastoral care to the congregation of Our Lady of the Rosary as Associate Pastor. Additionally, he is the spiritual advisor for the Magnificat and the Padre Pio devotions.
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Italian Community in Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church
Based on an article from Little Italy Association, Our Lady of the Rosary Catholic Church was founded in 1925, and ever since then, it has been the haven for fishermen returning to shore and the place of worship for many families who were instrumental in the construction of this stunning Italian church more than 90 years ago. The Church of Our Lady of the Rosary quickly established itself as the social, cultural, and spiritual epicenter of San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood. Our Lady of the Rosary continues to serve as a beacon of light for the Italian community. It is an integral part of what makes their area the unique and historically significant place it is today.
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Father Louis Maria Solcia, C.R.S.P entered his Reward this morning at 3:30.
Fr. Louie Confirmed my dad and married my parents. He was a very holy priest. Please pray for his soul. Eternal Rest Grant unto him, O Lord, and let your perpetual light shine upon him. pic.twitter.com/w6NL6c6Mt2
— Saint Augustine (@SaintAugustin19) March 2, 2023