Jesuit Father Mark C. Aita, physician, associate pastor and professor of medicine, died on January 11, 2017 at the age of 67.
He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 27, 1949. He graduated from La Salle High School in Philadelphia and entered the Society of Jesus at the Novitiate of St. Isaac Jogues in Wernersville, Pennsylvania, in 1967. He received a B.A. in philosophy from Fordham University and his medical degree from the Medical College of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He then completed his master of divinity at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley and was ordained to the priesthood on June 11, 1983.
Fr. Aita would serve his first 17 years as a Jesuit priest in Camden, New Jersey, as the director of St. Luke’s Catholic Medical Services and as an associate pastor and Superior at Holy Name Church. He was also a professor of medicine and geriatrics at the Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine.
In 2001, Fr. Aita moved to Baltimore to serve for a year as a medical and pastoral assistant at Loyola College and for another at Johns Hopkins University as a clinical assistant professor of medicine. For the next four years, he practiced medicine as a physician at Bon Secours Baltimore Health System, also teaching at Loyola Blakefield High School for one of those years.
In 2007, Fr. Aita became the associate director of the Institute of Catholic Bioethics at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia and in 2015 began serving at the university as an adjunct professor.