James Amato, MSW, Secretary for Catholic Human Services, will retire on December 31, 2023 according to a Sept. 27 announcement from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

“I am deeply grateful to the many priests, religious, and laity who have helped shape my career which has been a unique, gratifying, and faith-building experience,” said Amato. “I look forward to spending more time with my wife and grandchildren, reading, walking, and enjoying leisure time.”

For the past 40 years, Amato has served the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Secretariat for Catholic Human Services in several roles.

Beginning his career as a supervisor in various parish-based social service centers, Amato rose to Assistant Director at Saint Joseph House for Boys before becoming Assistant Director of Professional Services. In that role, he oversaw Homeless Services and Family Service Center programs for the Archdiocese. Amato later went on to become the Director of Children Services managing Foster Care, Group Homes, and In-Home Services involving contracts with the City of Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

He was appointed Deputy Secretary for Catholic Social Services in 2000 and Secretary for Catholic Human Services in 2016.

The Secretariat for Catholic Human Services is recognized as the largest faith-based human services provider in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Their agencies administer a broad range of programs and services that strengthen communities and improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in need each year.

Most Reverend John J. McIntyre, Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, oversees the Secretariat for Catholic Human Services as part of his administrative and pastoral responsibilities. Reflecting on Amato’s service, he said, “For the past four decades, Jim has faithfully served Catholic Human Services in a variety of roles and has taken on ever-increasing levels of responsibility to ensure the vibrancy of our mission to help those in need.”

Bishop McIntyre added, “His hard work has tremendously impacted hundreds of thousands of lives in deeply positive ways and his dedication to our most vulnerable brothers and sisters deserves our highest commendations. I ask that you join me in a prayer of thanksgiving for the gift of Jim and his work and in wishing him happiness, health, and fulfillment in retirement.”