Frank Burton, 84, Episcopal leader, swimmer, chess player

The Rev. Frank Burton Sr., 84, who led two Staten Island Episcopal congregations and was a licensed marriage and family counselor, died February 1, 2014 in Brandywine Senior Living, Colts Neck, NJ.

Born and raised in Montreal, he came to Prince’s Bay in 1966 and lived there until 1969, when he moved to Manhattan. He relocated to Freehold, NJ. in 1974, to Ridgefield, Conn. in 1994, and settled in Colts Neck in 2007.

Rev. Burton received his master of divinity degree from McGill University, Montreal, and did postgraduate work at the American Foundation of Religion and Psychiatry, Manhattan. After receiving specialized training in 1996, he served as interim pastor of two Staten Island Episcopal parishes — Christ Church, New Brighton, and St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, Eltingville. He was also pastor of St. James Church, Goshen, NY and was Priest in Charge at Christ Church in Patterson, NY from 2000 until his retirement in 2003.

He was respectful of all faiths and derived great joy from his religious life. Rev. Burton was a diplomate of the American Assn. of Pastoral Counselors and a member and clinical supervisor for the American Assn. of Marriage and Family Therapy. He had been associated with the Center for Advancement of Group Psychotherapy, Manhattan, since 1984. For most of his career, he maintained a private practice as a pastoral counselor in NJ and Manhattan. He also worked at several outpatient mental health centers.

Rev. Burton was an avid swimmer, dancer and chess player. He enjoyed classical music and the study of history and science. His former wife of 14 years, Izinita Watford, died in 2006. Surviving are his wife of 18 years, Theodora; his sons, Frank Jr., Robert, David and Pierre; his daughter, Deborah Burton, and five grandchildren.

A Funeral Mass will be held Saturday, Feb. 22, at 3:30 PM in St. James Chapel of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Manhattan. Entombment of ashes will follow in St. James Chapel. Arrangements are handled by the Freeman Manalapan-Marlboro Funeral Home, Manalapan, NJ.