Dr. Dennis Castillo

Professor of Church History




Ph.D. Divinity School of the University of Chicago (History of Christianity)
M.A. Divinity School of the University of Chicago
B.A. Michigan State University (History and Religious Studies)

Professional Memberships

American Academy of Religion (since 1987)
American Catholic Historical Association (since 1987)
American Historical Association (since 1991)

Works Published


The Santa Marija Convoy:  Faith and Endurance in War-Time Malta, 1940-42.  Lexington Books, 2012.

For the Spread of the Kingdom:  A History of Christ the King Seminary, 1857-2007, published by Christ the King Seminary as part of the institution's 150th anniversary.

Edited The Life and Times of John Timon:  The First Bishop of Buffalo, the work of the late Leonard Riforgiato.  Published by the Edwin Mellen Press, 2006.

The Maltese Cross: A Strategic History of Malta, published by the Greenwood Group, 2006.

A Catechist's Guide to the Early Church, published by Twenty-Third Publications, 2005.


"A Broken World:  Benedict XV and the First World War," published July 21, 2014 in America.

"Foreign support for the American Mission," published October 22, 2013 in America (online edition).

 "Pope Benedict XVI to commemorate the shipwreck of St. Paul," article on pope's visit to Malta in the April 2010 edition of The Western New York Catholic.

Contributed six articles on Maltese cities to The City and Urban Life, to be published by M.E. Sharpe.  Articles contributed were "History of Maltese Cities," "Melita," "Mdina," "Rabat," "Valletta," and "Birkirkara."

Introduction to reprint of Gerald Forton's A History of the Diocesan Labor College of Buffalo, New York, 1939-59, Fordham University, 2008.

Contributed "Women of Malta and War," for Encyclopedia of Women and War, published by ABC-CLIO (2005).

Contributed four chapters to American Decades: Primary Sources, published by Gale Research (2004).  Chapters on Religion in the United States in the 1910s, 1920s, 1980s, and 1990s.

"The Jesuits," Conspiracy Theories in American History:  An Encyclopedia, published by ABC-CLIO (2003).

"The Enduring Legacy of Maria Monk," American Catholic Studies, 112 (Spring-Winter 2001).

"The Pontificate of John Paul II," The Priest, 55 (October, 1999).

"The Parousia and Discipleship," The Priest, 51 (December 1995).

"The Knights Cannot Be Admitted:  Maltese Nationalism, the Knights of St. John, and the French Occupation of 1798-1800," The Catholic Historical Review, 79 (July 1993).

"The Maltese Cross," The Priest, 49 (June 1993).  Reprinted in Catholic Digest.

"The Origin of the Priest Shortage: 1942-1962," America, 167 (October 24, 1992).  New York Times commentary on November 14, 1992.

"Lay Ministry and the Vocation Crisis," Review for Religious, 44 (July 1985).

Papers presented at academic conferences

Presented paper titled " '...there are others we should dislike more.':  The Vatican-British conflict over Maltese episcopal appointments, 1936-1943" on January 2, 2014, at the American Catholic Historical Association conference in Washington, D.C.

Chaired a panel and offered comments on Catholicism in Western New York at the spring meeting of the American Catholic Historical Association, which met from April 4-6, 2013 at Stonehill College in Massachusetts.

"Vatican II at Fifty: Historical Background," Vatican II Symposium at Christ the King Seminary on October 23, 2012.

Chaired a panel entitled "Recent 18th and 19th Century Research," at a joint meeting of the American Catholic Historical Association/Canadian Catholic Historical Association in Toronto on April 16, 2011.

Presented paper entitled "Across the Battle Lines: The Vatican and Malta in World War II, 1940-43," at a joint meeting of the American Catholic Historical Association/Canadian Catholic Historical Association in Toronto on April 15, 2011.

"Lion of God:  John Timon, C.M., The First Bishop of Buffalo,"  DeAndreis-Rosati Lecture, sponsored by Office of Mission and Values at DePaul University (May 3, 2007).

"The Santa Marija Convoy: Faith and Endurance in War Time Malta, 1940-42," American Catholic Historical Association Spring Conference at Marquette University (March 30, 2007).

"The Enduring Legacy of Maria Monk," American Historical Association/American Catholic Historical Conference in San Francisco (January 6, 2002).

"The Temperance Movement in Detroit," Great Lakes Historical Conference at Grand Valley State University (October 5, 2000).

"The Origin of the Maltese Falcon: Charles V and the 1530 Act of Donation," New York Association of European Historians at LeMoyne College (September 23, 2000).

"The Maltese Community of Detroit," Conference on Michigan Local History at Wayne State University (April 8, 2000).

"Malta and the Treaty of Amiens," Great Lakes Historical Conference at Grand Valley State University (October 2, 1998).

"The Priest's Revolt of 1775: The Maltese Clergy and the Knights of St. John," Great Lakes Historical Conference at Grand Valley State University (October 7, 1995).

"The Role of Church History in Theological Education," Conference on Theological Education in the Catholic Tradition at Marquette University (August 7, 1995).

"The Maltese Revolt of 1798-1800 and the Counter-Revolution," Midwestern American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies at Marquette University (October 23, 1993).

"Socio-Economic Causes for the Priest Shortage in the United States: 1942-1962," Midwestern meeting of the American Academy of Religion at Western Michigan University (April 3, 1993).

Buffalo Seminary School