Saturday, May 4, 2024

In Memory of Archabbot Anthony Giunta: A Life of Selfless Service and Devotion

By A. Hernandez

ROME-RUTHENIA 4 May 2024 (NRom)

The passing of H.E. the Rt. Rev. Archabbot Anthony Giunta, TOR Mar, on the 2nd of May 2024, marks the end of an era for the Franciscans of the United Roman-Ruthenian Church and the broader religious community. Archabbot Giunta was a true servant of God, dedicating his life to the betterment of others through his unwavering faith, remarkable accomplishments, and profound compassion.

Archabbot Anthony administers the sacrament of Baptism.

Archabbot Giunta's journey was one of remarkable versatility and unwavering commitment. Before serving in the Church, he served in the United States Army and National Guard, as well as a Police Officer, specializing as an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Technician. This experience instilled in him a deep appreciation for the sacrifices made by those who protect and serve our communities.

Archabbot Anthony admits a religious sister to the novitiate.

Transitioning from his military and law enforcement roles, Archabbot Giunta pursued his calling as a chaplain, serving with the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, the South Carolina State Guard, and various fire departments and police departments. However, his principal role was as a hospital chaplain, where he became the most requested chaplain across all denominational lines, ministering to the spiritual needs of those in their most vulnerable moments. As a cancer survivor himself, he understood the struggles of his patients firsthand. 

Archabbot Anthony as a Fire Chaplain.

Archabbot Giunta's dedication to continuous education was equally impressive. He completed multiple degrees, including a doctorate, and served as a professor at the Pontifical Georgian College, sharing his vast knowledge and insights with the next generation of religious leaders. And, he held ranks in the Pontifical Walsingham Guard as a Colonel and a Naval Captain, serving as Chief of Chaplains. 

In recognition of his exceptional service and contributions, Archabbot Giunta was honored with the special rank of Canon Priest in the Patriarchal Curia of the Pontifical Court, which came with the title of "Excellency" and other special privileges. This distinction was a testament to his unwavering devotion and the profound impact he had on the lives of those he served.

Archabbot Anthony's coat of arms as Archabbot,
Superior General, and Canon Priest of the Patriarchal Chapter.

His Holiness Bishop Rutherford I eloquently captured the essence of Archabbot Giunta's legacy, stating, "Archabbot Giunta was a true beacon of hope and inspiration, a man whose life was a testament to the power of faith, compassion, and service. His passing leaves an indelible mark on our community, and his memory will continue to guide and inspire us in the years to come."

The Franciscans of the United Roman-Ruthenian Church, as well as the broader religious community, have lost a true champion, a man whose life was a shining example of what it means to live a life of selfless service and unwavering devotion. As we mourn his passing, we can take solace in the profound impact he had on countless lives and the enduring legacy he has left behind.