A Mass of Christian Burial was offered Tuesday for the Rev. Joseph C. Della Penta, 88, a Buffalo native, who died Aug. 28, 1999, in North Oaks Medical Center, Tickfaw, La.
A Dominican priest for 64 years, Father Della Penta had been involved since 1977 in parish and nursing-home ministry in the Tickfaw area, about 50 miles north of New Orleans.
A graduate of what is now Hutchinson-Central Technical High School, Father Della Penta joined the Dominican Order after high school. He was ordained in 1935 in Washington, D.C., and celebrated his first Mass in St. Columba's Catholic Church, Buffalo.
Before his ministry in Louisiana, he was a professor for many years at De Paul University, Chicago.
Father Della Penta was a gifted musician. He played the guitar, banjo and mandolin and organized several musical groups that performed for wedding receptions and private parties.
He was a member of the Knights of Columbus in North Forest, Ill., and Hammond, Ind.
His late brother, the Rev. Mark Della Penta, was a pastor in Independence, La.
The Mass of Christian Burial was offered in Our Lady of Pompeii Catholic Church, Tickfaw. Burial was in Rosaryville Cemetery, Ponchatoula, La.