SEE ALPHABETICAL LISTING


75 YEARS

Sister Mary Matthew Baltus, RSM

 The Baltus Observatory at Mercyhurst University in Erie is named after 75-year jubilarian Sister Mary Matthew Baltus, RSM. A professor of math and astronomy for 57 years at Mercyhurst, she designed the observatory at Zurn Hall. A native of Erie, Sister Mary Matthew entered the Sisters of Mercy in 1944 and taught in several Erie and Pittsburgh diocesan schools. During her tenure at Mercyhurst, she received the first-ever “Outstanding Teacher Award,” was dean of students, an interim academic dean and president of the college senate. She helped form the Earth Space Science Club at Mercyhurst. An avid student, Sister Mary Matthew received National Science Foundation grants to study physics, astrophysics, organic chemistry, chemistry, radioisotopes, planetarium education, radio astronomy and astronomy at various prestigious universities throughout the U.S. Additionally, she was granted a Fulbright Scholarship in 1977 to attend the Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt, where she studied Egyptian history and monuments. She did astronomical research at Allegheny Observatory, Pittsburgh; Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff, Ariz.; and Mt. Wilson Observatory, Pasadena, Calif. Ever active, Sister Matthew learned to fly an airplane, dabbled with painting, took on the challenges of computer technology and became a master gardener. Today, she still visits the computer lab and learns about the latest scientific innovations.

Congratulatory messages

Mercyhurst University congratulates you, Sister Mary Matthew Baltus, RSM, for your contributions to the Mercyhurst community!
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
Congratulations! Thank you for your service to Mercyhurst Preparatory School. We are blessed to be a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of Mercy.

75 YEARS

Sister Irene Warchol, OSB

 Sister Irene Warchol, OSB, retired in 2011 after a longtime ministry of bread baking. She considered it a skill that taught her humility, patience and faithfulness. Food service was her specialty, having spent more than 60 years ministering in area church and convent kitchens, including those at St. Stephen and St. Joseph in Oil City; St. Joseph and Sacred Heart in Sharon; St. Gregory in North East; and Mount St. Benedict Monastery in Erie. A native of St. Patrick Parish, Erie, she professed her first vows in 1944. She graduated from St. Benedict Academy, Erie, and earned a food service training certificate from Pennsylvania State University. She considers the daily communal and private prayer life of monastics to be a special blessing and has always felt privileged to be able to attend to the needs of others, especially the poor. Sister Irene is now fully engaged in the ministry of prayer and presence at Mount St. Benedict Monastery. She enters every day with patience and fidelity.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
St. Patrick Parish, Erie, congratulates parish native Sister Irene Warchol, OSB, on her observance of 75 years of service.
Thank you, Sister Irene, and all our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City

70 YEARS

Sister Teresa Marie Bohren, SSJ

 “The Lord nudged me in high school,” says Sister Teresa Marie Bohren, SSJ, of her call to religious life. A native of Reynoldsville, she entered the Sisters of St. Joseph from her home parish of St. Mary, Reynoldsville. She attended St. Mary School, Reynoldsville High School, Villa Maria College in Erie, and Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. Sister Teresa Marie taught at schools throughout the Diocese of Erie before becoming a caseworker for Catholic Social Services in Erie. She later served as director of Catholic Social Services for more than 15 years. She also served in practice as a social worker and as a bereavement counselor with Hospice of Metropolitan Erie. More than 30 years ago, she and Peter Lyons, owner of the former Marketplace Grille Restaurant in Erie, established the Sisters of St. Joseph’s annual Thanksgiving dinner. Through this ministry, which continues today, hundreds of Thanksgiving dinners are served to anyone in need each year.

Congratulatory messages

Sister T., you are a walking, talking blessing. We sure miss you! Congratulations on your jubilee. — ♥ Hospice of Metropolitan Erie
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania

70 YEARS

Sister Pierre Dembinski, RSM

 A native of St. Casimir Parish in Erie, Sister Pierre Dembinski, RSM, was inspired by two uncles: Father John Dembinski and Father Peter Dembinski. For nine years after high school graduation in 1941, she assisted Father Peter at his three coal-mining parishes in Clearfield County. She entered the Sisters of Mercy in 1949, beginning a 23-year teaching career at diocesan elementary schools in Pittsburgh, Titusville, Punxsutawney, Corry, Erie, DuBois and Greenville. In 1972, Sister Pierre earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Mercyhurst University. She also earned a library science certificate from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, and did graduate studies at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York; and St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, Texas. She received a cosmetology certificate from Erie County Vocational-Technical School, Pittsburgh Beauty Academy and DuBois School of Cosmetology. She returned to teach cosmetology part-time at Vo-Tech. Sister Pierre was vocational, occupational and recreational therapist at DuBois Regional Medical Center, supervised in the dietary department of Mercyhurst University, and founded and directed for 20 years the Lower Allegheny Valley Social Services for the homeless, unemployed and needy in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. From 1998 to 2002, she was receptionist at Saint Mary’s Home of Erie. Currently active as a prayer shawl leader, she is an email correspondent and convent volunteer. She supports and directs the recycling of used greeting cards for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Camp for Children.

Congratulatory messages

Thank you for your service to the DuBois community. May God continue to bless you in all that you do! — St. Catherine of Siena Parish, DuBois
Your sacrifice and love for God's children will forever be appreciated by St. George Parish! Congratulations on your 70th jubilee!
Mercyhurst University congratulates you, Sister Pierre Dembinski, RSM, for your contributions to the Mercyhurst community!
St. Luke Parish offers thanks and prayers for your service and dedication to the Lord.
Saint Mary's Home of Erie congratulates you on your jubilee! Thank you for your dedication to our mission of "Loving to Care."
Congratulations! Thank you for your service to Mercyhurst Preparatory School. We are blessed to be a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of Mercy.
St. Michael Parish, Greenville, offers Sister Pierre thanks and prayers for her service and dedication to the Lord.
Congratulations! Thank you for serving our patients and getting them moving again. From your friends at Penn Highlands Healthcare.

70 YEARS

Sister Margaret Ann Hardner, SSJ

 Sister Margaret Ann Hardner, SSJ, spent 22 years as president of Saint Vincent Hospital, Erie, where she ministered for a total of 34 years. In recognition of her vision and leadership, the hospital named a building in her honor. An endowment also was established in her name to further care for the underserved and reduce disparities in health care. But that was only one aspect of her busy religious life. In the late 1980s, she heard that a local psychiatrist and his son wanted to start a small hospital in rural India. She made the first of nine trips to India in 1992, ministering in a clinic and later in a school, both established by the Shankar Service Foundation of Erie. Mission work was her first love. She had wanted to be a Maryknoll Sister and serve in a foreign land, but she stayed in Erie instead, entering the Sisters of St. Joseph in 1949. For 13 years, she served as a teacher in Catholic schools. A native of St. Patrick Parish, Erie, she attended St. Patrick School, Villa Maria Academy and Villa Maria College. Later, she attended Xavier University in Ohio, and Providence College in Rhode Island.

Congratulatory messages

Thank you, Sister, for your memorable service to St. John's School, Erie!
St. Patrick Parish, Erie, congratulates parish native Sister Margaret Ann Hardner, SSJ, on her 70 years of service.
Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '49 (Faculty)
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania
Congratulations, Sister Margaret Ann Hardner! Thank you for your dedication and service. God Bless You! — AHN Saint Vincent Hospital

70 YEARS

Sister Mary William Hoffman, OSB

 Sister Mary Hoffman, OSB, has been a vowed monastic for 70 years. During that time, she has sought God in community, prayer and ministry. A native of St. Martin Parish in North Collins, New York, she spent her early years as an elementary and secondary teacher at St. Stephen and St. Joseph schools in Oil City; St. Gregory in North East; Immaculate Conception in Clarion; Kennedy Catholic High School, Hermitage; and St. Benedict Academy in Erie. In 1978, she began ministry at St. John XXIII Home in Hermitage, where she worked in social services and accounting. She also worked as a bookkeeper for the Benedictine’s East Coast Migrant Program and as assistant manager/program director of Benetwood Apartments. Since 1999, Sister Mary has been engaged in Catholic Rural Ministry in the Diocese of Erie, where she has served the rural poor in the Eastern Vicariate through catechesis, retreat work and spiritual formation. For Sister Mary, this is the perfect opportunity to be a compassionate presence to God’s people. She embodies genuine care for those whose needs are deepest and for every part of God’s creation.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Mercyhurst University congratulates you, Sister Mary Hoffman, OSB, for your contributions to the Mercyhurst community!
Thank you, Sister Mary, and all our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City

65 YEARS

Father Noel Rothrauff, OSB

 Father Noel Rothrauff, OSB, a monk of Saint Vincent Archabbey in Latrobe, is celebrating his 65th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. He made simple profession of monastic vows in 1947, solemn profession in 1950, and was ordained a priest in 1954. In the Benedictine community, he served as an educator and a pastor. From 1959-61, he was assistant pastor of Queen of the World Parish in St. Marys, while also teaching religion at Elk County Catholic. He went on to teach and minister at various other area schools and parishes served by the Benedictines. In 1994, he was appointed parochial vicar of Queen of the World Parish, St. Marys, and then returned to the Diocese of Greensburg as administrator of St. Benedict Parish in Marguerite. Father Noel has a deep commitment to the missionary activities of Saint Vincent Archabbey through his continuing service as director of Saint Vincent Missions. Over the years, he served in various capacities at São Bento Monastery in Vinhedo, Brazil.


Congratulatory messages

Congratulations, Father Noel H. Rothrauff, OSB, on your 65th jubilee. The Diocese of Erie has been richly blessed by the Benedictine charisms and generous pastoral care you have shared with the faithful. God bless you!

65 YEARS

Father Daniel Wolfel, OSB

 Father Daniel Wolfel, OSB, a Benedictine of Saint Vincent Archabbey, Latrobe, and a native of St. Marys, is celebrating 65 years of ordination to the priesthood. Ordained on May 22, 1954, he served in parish apostolates in the dioceses of Greensburg, Pittsburgh, Altoona-Johnstown and Erie, all in Pennsylvania; and Youngstown, Ohio. He also served at Saint Vincent College and Archabbey, where he was socius of novices, assistant curator at Saint Vincent Museum, a religion instructor at Saint Vincent Preparatory School, and assistant treasurer of Saint Vincent Archabbey. He served many parishes throughout the area, including as pastor of Sacred Heart Parish, St. Marys, from 1998 to 2002. From 2003 until his retirement in the fall of 2016, he served as senior priest at Queen of the World and St. Mary parishes in St. Marys. Father Wolfel has been spending his retirement years at Saint Vincent Archabbey.


Congratulatory messages

Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie

60 YEARS

Sister Mary Francis Becker, SSJ (IN MEMORIAM)

 Sadly, Sister Mary Francis Becker, SSJ, passed away on Aug. 20. Up until her death, she continued to paint and offer private art lessons. Throughout her religious life, she believed that “God does not relent.” Despite her desire as a young woman to live in a big city and become an artist or dress designer, she decided to enter religious life with the Sisters of St. Joseph in Erie. A native of St. Luke Parish, she entered the community in 1959; she never regretted listening to the voice of God that inspired her vocation 60 years ago. As a youngster, she attended St. Peter Cathedral School and Villa Maria Academy. She earned a degree in elementary education at Villa Maria College, Erie, and studied art at Mercyhurst University, Erie. She then earned a master’s in art from the University of Notre Dame. She taught at St. Andrew, St. Peter and St. John schools, all in Erie, and served as principal at Villa Maria Elementary. Also, she taught at Villa Maria College and at Saint Vincent Hospital. For a time, she was self-employed as a decorating consultant, artist and painting instructor. She did projects for clients in Erie, Buffalo and Washington, D.C. She once said, “Everybody should be able to share in the beauty of God.”

The following congratulatory messages to Sister Mary Francis Becker were shared prior to her death on Aug. 20, 2019:

Thank you, Sister, for your memorable service to St. John's School, Erie!
Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '48
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
St. Luke Parish offers thanks and prayers for your service and dedication to the Lord.
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania
Congratulations, Sister Mary Francis Becker! Thank you for your dedication and service. God bless you! — AHN Saint Vincent Hospital

60 YEARS

Sister Kathryn Disbrow, OSB

 Benedictine Sister Kathryn Disbrow entered her religious community soon after graduating from St. Benedict Academy, Erie. This year is her 60th anniversary of vowed monastic life. With degrees in math and administration and certification in early childhood development, Sister Kathryn taught for 22 years in the following diocesan schools: St. Mary, Erie; Immaculate Conception, Clarion; St. Joseph and Sacred Heart schools, Sharon; and Mount Calvary, Erie. In addition, she was principal and teacher at St. Joseph and St. Stephen schools in Oil City. Sister Kathryn returned to Erie in 1981, first to administer the community’s newly established East Coast Migrant Head Start Program, and then to assist in the business office. She later was the community treasurer. In 1999, Sister Kathryn returned to St. Benedict Child Development Center as lead teacher in the infants’ room until 2017. Currently, she is a monastery receptionist, while faithful to the ministry of prayer and presence. She radiates welcome and is an example of the steadiness and stability in which monastic life is rooted.

Congratulatory messages

Many blessings to you. Thank you for your 60 years. May God bless you. — St. Andrew Church, Erie
Mercyhurst University congratulates you, Sister Kathryn Disbrow, OSB, for your contributions to the Mercyhurst community!
You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Thank you to our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City

60 YEARS

Sister Martha Howick, SSJ

 Sixty years ago, Sister Martha Howick, SSJ, recognized God’s “very freeing” plan for her to enter religious life. A native of St. Agatha Parish, Meadville, she entered the Sisters of St. Joseph on Aug. 27, 1959. She had attended Meadville High School, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Villa Maria College and the Pennsylvania Department of Education. She also studied at Gannon University. In 1967, she professed her final vows. She taught at the following diocesan schools: Our Lady of Peace, St. Ann, St. Andrew, St. Peter and Villa Maria Elementary, all in Erie; St. Leo, Ridgway; St. Francis, Clearfield; and St. Bernard, Bradford. Sister Martha also served as parish visitation minister at numerous parishes before working in pastoral care as a chaplain at Saint Vincent Hospital in Erie. She recently retired from Saint Vincent.

Congratulatory messages

Congratulations, Sister! — From Holy Rosary, Erie
Congratulations from the Catholic Community of Meadville.
Many blessings to you. Thank you for your 60 years. May God bless you. — St. Andrew Church, Erie
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
Thank you for your service to Our Lady of Peace School and we pray for God's blessings for you on your 60th jubilee.
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania
The members of the Gannon University family congratulate and wish God's continued blessings on Sister Martha Howick, SSJ, '69 VMC, for her exceptional dedication to service and the mission of Catholic education in the Diocese of Erie.
Congratulations, Sister Martha Howick!  Thank you for your dedication and service. God Bless You! — AHN Saint Vincent Hospital

60 YEARS

Sister Ann Marie Joint, SSJ

 Sister Ann Marie Joint, SSJ, recalls considering religious life as early as seventh and eighth grade. After graduating from Villa Maria Academy in 1959, she entered the Sisters of St. Joseph from St. Ann Parish in Erie. She professed final vows in 1967. She earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Villa Maria College, a master’s in secondary math from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (EUP), and elementary/secondary administration certification from EUP. A longtime teacher at many schools in the Diocese of Erie, she also served as principal at the following schools: St. Patrick and Sacred Heart schools, and Villa Maria Academy, all in Erie. She taught at Villa Maria Elementary School from 2004 until it closed in 2017. Currently, she teaches at St. George School in Erie. In 2001, the Serra Club of Erie presented Sister Ann Marie with the Outstanding Religious Award.

Congratulatory messages

Thank you for all that you have done and continue to do for the children of St. George Church and School! Happy 60th jubilee!
Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '59 (Administration)
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania

60 YEARS

Sister Colette Korn, OSB

 Benedictine Sister Colette Korn, a graduate of St. Benedict Academy, Erie, has been a vowed member of the Erie monastic community for 60 years. She has been involved in various ministries, beginning with the community’s sewing room. She became adept at habit-making. When habits were no longer worn, she transferred her skills to food service until she entered the health care field in 1973. As a nurse aide, she ministered at UPMC Hamot, where she gained experience and found her place in geriatric care. Sister Colette spent 35 years in gerontological home health care. Her attentiveness, concern and expertise helped end-of-life to be easier for dozens of patients. Even now, although not formally active in nurse aide work, Sister Colette shows special care to the sick and infirm in the community. She also currently serves as a daily receptionist at Mount St. Benedict Monastery. In addition, Sister Colette participates in a variety of the monastery’s internal ministries. She’s always ready for any good work and responds quickly, and with kindness and compassion, to the needs of others.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie

60 YEARS

Sister Colette Palmer, SSJ

 A native of Sharon, Sister Colette Palmer, SSJ, entered the Sisters of St. Joseph immediately after graduating from Villa Maria Academy in 1959. She graduated from Villa Maria College, Erie, with a degree in nursing, and then pursued studies in community mental health at Boston State Hospital. She was a teacher at St. Peter, Our Lady of Peace and St. Ann schools, all in Erie; and St. Bernard School in Bradford. She was a registered nurse, having worked as a nurse and counselor at Saint Vincent Hospital from 1971-78. For the next four years, she was a nurse at Saint Mary’s Home of Erie. She also was a nurse and director of Student Health Services at Villa Maria College. At one time, Sister Colette served as director of the Sisters of St. Joseph Marycrest nursing facility. From 2003 until her retirement last year, she served in pastoral care as a chaplain at Saint Vincent.

Congratulatory messages

Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '59
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
Saint Mary's Home of Erie congratulates you on your jubilee! Thank you for your dedication to our mission of "Loving to Care."
Thank you for your service to Our Lady of Peace School and we pray for God's blessings for you on your 60th jubilee.
We are grateful for your many gifts and for your faithful ministry in service to God's people. — The Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania
Congratulations, Sister Collette Palmer! Thank you for your dedication and service. God bless you! — AHN Saint Vincent Hospital

60 YEARS

Father James Sanner

 Msgr. James Sanner recalls serving Mass as an altar boy for Archbishop John Mark Gannon at St. Peter Cathedral in Erie. That was the beginning of his call to the priesthood, now in its 60th year. Following his ordination in 1959, Msgr. Sanner served as parochial vicar at the following parishes: St. Stephen and St. Joseph, both in Oil City; St James, Erie; and St. John in Tidioute. In 1967, he became aware of the priest shortage in the military during the Vietnam War. Approved to join the Archdiocese of the Military Services, he served two tours of duty in Vietnam, in 1968 and 1970. He served as a chaplain on active duty for more than 35 years at various assignments throughout the world. In 2002, he retired from the U.S. Army as a colonel. During his distinguished military career, he earned two Bronze Stars and the Meritorious Service Medal, as well as other service medals and ribbons. Now retired and living in San Antonio, Texas, he provides Catholic services at Fort Sam Houston.


Congratulatory messages

Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '51
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
Congratulations and God's blessing on 60 years of ministry, Father Sanner. May God continue to bless your ministry. — From St. Julia Parish, Erie
The members of the Gannon University family congratulate and wish God's continued blessings on Msgr. James E. Sanner, '53, for his exceptional dedication to service and the mission of Catholic education in the Diocese of Erie.
Thank you, Father Sanner, and all our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City

60 YEARS

Sister Irene Spacht, OSB

 Benedictine Sister Irene Spacht celebrates her 60th anniversary as a Benedictine monastic this year. Born and raised in North East, she grew up on a farm and learned the value of hard work, something she continues to put to good use. Having earned degrees in math, she also earned certification in education and as a school counselor. She spent 45 years in education, teaching in the following schools: St. Joseph and Sacred Heart schools in Sharon; Mount Calvary, Erie; St. Joseph and St. Stephen schools, Oil City; and Venango Catholic High School, Oil City. In 1995, she returned to her home parish and ministered until 2004 at St. Gregory School as a teacher and principal. She then took up part-time ministry at St. Benedict Education Center, while also serving as a part-time staff member in the community’s development and communications office. In 2006, she began working full-time in the development and communications office. In 2010, Sister Irene was appointed director of liturgy for the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, a ministry through which she is able to share her gifts and love of liturgy.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Mercyhurst University congratulates you, Sister Irene Spacht, OSB, for your contributions to the Mercyhurst community!
Thank you, Sister Irene, for your generous service to the people of St. Joseph Parish and School. — St. Joseph Parish, Sharon
Thank you, sister, for your years of service. May God continue to bless you and those you touch. — St. Michael, Fryburg
Thank you to our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City

50 YEARS

Sister Jacinta Conklin, OSB

 Only a year ago, Sister Jacinta Conklin, OSB, transferred her vows from the Benedictine Sisters of Elk County to the Erie Benedictines. She came to live in Erie in 2016 when it became clear that St. Joseph Monastery in St. Marys would be closing as a result of a climbing median age and a lack of new members. When her vows were officially transferred in 2018, she was fully incorporated into the Erie community. Today, she celebrates 50 years of monastic profession and a lifetime of caring for all of God’s creation. A past prioress, she showed loving care to her community members as well as to the monastery buildings, property, maintenance needs and grounds. From 2012-16, she worked in pastoral ministry at St. Boniface Parish in Kersey. As an Erie Benedictine, her ministries have kept her close to nature and close to people. She is community driver and library aide and shows her love of the earth through seasonal lawn care. Sister Jacinta knows the rare gift of discovering contentment in the routine of daily life and joy in the surprise of unexpected pleasures. Her hearty laugh has become a treasured sound in the monastery.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie

50 YEARS

Sister Susan Doubet, OSB

 Benedictine Sister Susan Doubet’s 50 years of vowed life have been a journey marked by ongoing discernment and change. After 27 years as a Sister of St. Joseph, Sister Susan discerned a new call to monastic life. She began the transfer process to the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, with her incorporation finalized in 1997. As a Sister of St. Joseph, her ministerial life was spent as a secondary teacher, primarily of math and physics, having taught for a brief time at Bradford Central Christian High School, Bradford, and then for 23 years at Villa Maria Academy, Erie. At Villa, she also served as administrator/principal. As a Benedictine, Sister Susan has worked as a staff member in the development and public relations departments, Benetvision Publications, and AIM (Alliance for International Monasticism). She was AIM’s executive director for eight years. Since 2003, she has been a research assistant to Sister Joan Chittister, OSB, a position she holds today while also serving as subprioress. Sister Susan is known for her sense of humor and love of nature. For her, creation is God’s love made visible.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '65 (Administration)

50 YEARS

Sister Rosanne Loneck, OSB

 Sister Rosanne Loneck, OSB, is the retreat coordinator for Mid-Life/Long-Life retreats offered at Mount St. Benedict Monastery in Erie. Her spiritual guidance is marked by simplicity, sincerity and a fidelity of heart that reflects the life of a committed monastic woman. She first met the Benedictine Sisters as a student at St. Benedict Academy (SBA) in Erie. A graduate of Villa Maria College, Erie, she remained affiliated with SBA from 1966-88. During that time, she was a teacher, director of the summer school program and assistant principal. When SBA closed, she became the liaison to the SBA Alumnae Association. She is involved in a number of other Benedictine ministries, including the St. Benedict Education Center and Camp Glinodo. Through the years, she has served her religious community as a formation director, purchaser of community supplies, dean of the monastery, director of human resources, and co-director of the Oblate/Associate Program. In 1991, Sister Rosanne became a certified spiritual director and since then has offered guidance and spiritual direction to individuals and retreatants alike.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Congratulations from your home parish of St. George! May God bless you in your 50th jubilee year!

40 YEARS

Father Joseph Kalinowski

 A native of St. Julia Parish, Erie, Father Joseph Kalinowski celebrates his 40th anniversary as a priest this year. Currently, he is pastor of St. John Parish, Tidioute, with its secondary mission church of St. Anthony Church in Tionesta. For more than 14 years of his priesthood, from 1998 to 2012, Father Kalinowski served as a chaplain with the U.S. Navy and Army. After his ordination in 1979, he served as a parochial vicar at St. Joseph Parish, Sharon, and Good Shepherd Parish, West Middlesex. Later, he was parochial vicar for four years at St. Stephen Parish, Oil City, and was administrator and then pastor of St. Eusebius Parish, East Brady. From 2001-02, he was pastor of St. Mary of Grace Parish, Meadville. During his weekend assistant assignments at various parishes over the years, he was a member of the faculty at three secondary schools: Kennedy Catholic, Hermitage; Elk County Catholic, St. Marys; and DuBois Central Catholic, DuBois. While in DuBois, he served as chaplain at the DuBois Medical Center.


Congratulatory messages

Thank you for your service to the DuBois community. May God continue to bless you in all that you do! — St. Catherine of Siena Parish, DuBois
Congratulations from the Catholic Community of Meadville.
"Go and teach all nations, says the Lord; I am with you always, until the end of the world." Congratulations from your choir at St. John Parish and Mary Jane Thomas.
Hearty congratulations to Rev. Joseph Kalinowski from your home parish, St. Julia. May God continue to bless your ministry.
Thank you for your generous service to the people of St. Joseph Parish and School. — St. Joseph Parish, Sharon
Thank you to our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City
Congratulations! Thank you for serving the people of the DuBois area when they needed it most. — From your friends at Penn Highlands Healthcare

40 YEARS

Father Stanley Swacha

 Father Stanley J. Swacha, a native of Our Lady, Help of Christians Parish, Oil City, was ordained on May 4, 1979. He began his ministry as parochial vicar at St. Leo Magnus Parish, Ridgway, where he served until 1982. He spent the following summer as parochial vicar at Our Lady, Queen of the Americas Parish, Conneaut Lake, and then at St. Michael Parish, Greenville, until 1989. For the next four years, Father Swacha was administrator of St. Bernard Parish, Falls Creek, followed by an assignment as pastor of the same parish through 2001. At that point, he was named pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Sharon until 2008. Father Swacha then became pastor of St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish, Sharon, through 2011, when he was assigned as pastor of Immaculate Conception Parish, Houtzdale, for a year. At the same time, he was pastor of Christ the King Parish, Houtzdale, where he remained for five years. In 2014, Father Swacha took on a series of roles including administrator and then pastor of St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish, Erie, as well as administrator and then pastor of Holy Trinity Parish, Erie. He completed those assignments in 2015 and 2017, respectively, at which point he became a senior associate at three parishes: Our Mother of Perpetual Help, Lewis Run, and St. Bernard and St. Francis of Assisi parishes, Bradford. In addition to his parish work, Father Swacha was a diocesan master of ceremonies throughout the 1980s, and also served on the diocesan Marriage Tribunal from 1982-84. He also has been active with several Boy Scout troops and with the Knights of Columbus during his priesthood.


Congratulatory messages

Thank you to our religious, clergy and deacons for giving us your prayers and guidance. God's blessings! — Oil City Catholic Community (St. Joseph Parish and St. Stephen Parish), Oil City
Congratulations, Father Swacha, on your 40th anniversary to the priesthood. Thank you for your dedication and service to God's church and his people. God bless you. — St. Michael, Greenville

40 YEARS

Father Thomas Tyler

 Father Thomas Tyler, VF, celebrated the 40th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood on May 4. He has worked in a wide array of parishes throughout the diocese, beginning with his first five-year assignment as parochial vicar at St. Peter Cathedral, Erie. He then remained in Erie as parochial vicar at Sacred Heart Parish through June of 1989. From there he became pastor at St. Charles Parish, New Bethlehem, where he worked through 1998. During that time, he became dean of the Oil City Deanery, representing priests in his region on the Presbyteral Council from 1994 through 1999. In the 1980s, Father Tyler was the moderator for the Pre Cana program in the Erie area, and also worked with the Marriage Tribunal. He was a member of the Clergy Continuing Education Committee from 1996 through 2000. In 1998, he was assigned as pastor of St. Gregory Parish in North East, where he stayed until early 2004. He spent the ensuing decade as pastor of St. Joseph, Force, and accepted another term on the Presbyteral Council, a role he fulfilled through 2014. Since 2014, Father Tyler has served as pastor of his native parish, Holy Cross in Fairview.


Congratulatory messages

Congratulations on your faith-filled commitment in serving the needs of God's people. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. — St. Peter Cathedral Parish, Erie
The faith community of Holy Cross Catholic Church in Fairview congratulates and thanks you, Father Thomas Tyler, for your 40 years of devoted service and commitment to the priesthood. You are a joyful witness to all.

25 YEARS

Father Vincent Cieslewicz

 For most of his 25 years in the priesthood, Father Vincent Cieslewicz has served as a parochial vicar and a pastor of parishes in Jefferson and McKean counties in the Diocese of Erie. He also served for five years, from 2008-13, as a chaplain at the Federal Correctional Institution McKean in Bradford. A Pittsburgh area native, he was ordained in 1994 in the Polish National Catholic Church. He served as pastor of St. Barbara Polish National Church in Houtzdale, located within the Diocese of Erie. In 2004, he was incardinated into the Diocese of Erie as a Roman Catholic priest. His pastoral work here began in January 2005, when he was named parochial vicar at St. Tobias Parish, Brockway. That same year, he was named pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Mount Jewett, and St. Elizabeth Parish, Smethport. He continues to serve as pastor of both parishes today.


Congratulatory messages

“Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness!” Father Cieslewicz, your generosity and ministry have been a beautiful expression of Psalm 100. May God bless you!

25 YEARS

Sister Ann Muczynski, OSB

 Erie Benedictine Sister Ann Muczynski celebrates 25 years of vowed life this year. When she first entered the community, she taught at St. Mary School, Erie. After her novitiate and some time at the Neighborhood Art House, she resumed teaching and spent five years at St. John the Baptist School in Erie. She continued her education, earning a master’s in social work from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. Sister Ann is a board certified clinical social worker with experience as a trauma specialist for the Belle Center for Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse in Ohio, and as a trauma therapist and supervisor with Family Services of NWPA. Since 2011, Sister Ann has been employed at Erie’s VA Medical Center as a post-traumatic stress disorder specialist and the facility’s military sexual trauma coordinator. She brings a sensitive heart, authentic sincerity and deep compassion to this intense work. Monastic values define Sister Ann; prayer centers her. She is known for a listening heart that she opens wide to the world and the people she serves.

Congratulatory messages

You are a blessing. You are an inspiration. We are grateful. — Benedictine Sisters of Erie
Thank you, Sister, for your memorable service to St. John's School, Erie!
Congratulations on your 25th jubilee! Thank you for your dedication and faithful ministry. God bless you. — From your home parish, St. Joseph, Warren

DEACON ANNIVERSARIES

The following deacons are celebrating anniversaries of their ordinations to the permanent diaconate in the Diocese of Erie.

25 YEARS

Deacon Miguel Alvarez

Current assignments:
  • Permanent deacon, St. Stephen Parish, Erie

Congratulatory messages

Congratulations, Deacon Alvarez, on your 25th jubilee. You have been a blessing to the Diocese of Erie and we offer prayers of deep gratitude for your service.

20 YEARS

Deacon Ralph DeCecco

Current assignments:
  • Permanent deacon, St. Andrew Parish, Erie
  • Coordinator of Prison Ministry, Diocese of Erie
  • Facility Chaplaincy Program Director, State Correctional Institution, Albion

Congratulatory messages

Let us all congratulate Deacon Ralph and Janet DeCecco as he celebrates his 20th anniversary of ordination to the diaconate. Your ministry at St. Andrew Church has been a blessing for all of us.

20 YEARS

Deacon Robert DeNoon (retired)

Current ministries:
  • Community representative, Ethics Committee, Penn Highlands DuBois
  • Deacon assistant, St. Tobias Parish, Brockway

Congratulatory messages

Congratulations! Thank you for all you do and your years of service to Penn Highlands DuBois and for the care you’ve provided to our patients, their families and our staff. — From your friends at Penn Highlands Healthcare

20 YEARS

Deacon Joseph Lyncha

Diaconal ministry outside the Diocese of Erie
Residence: Coolidge, Arizona
Congratulatory messages

“Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness!” Deacon Lyncha, your generosity and ministry have been a beautiful expression of Psalm 100. May God bless you!

10 YEARS

Deacon Joseph Cicero

Current assignments:
  • Permanent deacon, St. John the Evangelist Parish, Girard
  • Chaplain, Maria House Project
  • Ministry, Pleasant Ridge Manor, Girard

Congratulatory messages

Happy 10th anniversary of your ordination, Deacon Joe. With love from your parish family of St. John the Evangelist.

10 YEARS

Deacon Ronald Fronzaglia

Current assignments:
  • Permanent deacon, St. Francis Xavier Parish, McKean
  • Coordinator, mentor group for permanent deacon candidates
  • Chaplain, Victorious Missionaries, Diocese of Erie

Congratulatory messages

Thank you for your service. Many blessings to you as you celebrate your jubilee. May God bless you. — Cathedral Prep and Villa Maria Academy '61

10 YEARS

Deacon Kevin Kunik

Current assignments:
  • Permanent deacon, Blessed Sacrament Parish, Erie
  • Member, Clergy Continuing Education Committee
  • Chair, Deacon Continuing Education Committee

Congratulatory messages

Congratulations to Deacon Kunik on your 10 years of service to the Blessed Sacrament Parish community. Thank you for your loving example of self-sacrifice and generous service. The Lord has blessed us with your ministry!


NEWLY ORDAINED PERMANENT DEACONS

From left, Deacon Randy Kondrlik, Deacon Martin Aubel, Bishop Lawrence Persico, Deacon Matthew Ochalek, and Deacon Glenn Bailey, Ph.D.

 Calling the permanent diaconate a “vital ministry” of the Catholic Church, Bishop Lawrence Persico on May 31 ordained four men as permanent deacons for the Diocese of Erie. Martin Aubel, Glenn Bailey, Ph.D., Randy Kondrlik and Matthew Ochalek embraced their new ministerial role during an evening ordination Mass at St. Peter Cathedral in downtown Erie. They bring the number of permanent deacons in the diocese to 77.

 In your role as deacons, you have come to be and are associates of Peter, John and all the Apostles,” the bishop told the new deacons. “You help in the apostolic ministry and share in its proclamation. You ought to feel impelled to do good, to be of service in the name of Jesus crucified and risen, and the urgency to carry the Word of God to the life of his holy people.”

 Bishop Persico thanked the men’s wives and families for their support, as well as instructors, pastors, and Father Mark Nowak and Deacon Richard Shewman of the diocese’s Permanent Diaconate Formation Program.

 Here are their new assignments:

Deacon Martin Aubel – St. Michael Parish, Greenville, and St. Margaret Mission Church, Jamestown

Deacon Glenn Bailey – Our Lady of Peace Parish, Erie

Deacon Randy Kondrlik – St. Thomas Parish, Corry, and St. Teresa of Avila Parish, Union City

Deacon Matthew Ochalek – Holy Rosary Parish, Erie, and chaplain ministry at Mercyhurst Preparatory School, Erie


Congratulatory messages for Deacon Aubel

Congratulations from St. Michael Parish, Greenville, in your new role as Deacon Marty Aubel. We offer thanks and prayers for your service and dedication to the Lord.



Congratulatory messages for Deacon Bailey

Congratulations, Deacon Glenn Bailey, on your diaconate ordination. Your parish family of Our Lady of Peace is proud of you and supports you.



Congratulatory messages for Deacon Kondrlik

Ad multos annos, Deacon Randy Kondrlik. Thank you for saying “yes” to all Christ asks of you. The faithful of the Diocese of Erie are blessed by your love.



Congratulatory messages for Deacon Ochalek

Blessings on your ordination and future ministry! — From your home parish of Holy Rosary, Erie

To send congratulatory wishes to these jubilarians, send notes/cards to the person in care of:

Office of Communications
St. Mark Catholic Center
429 E. Grandview Blvd.,
Erie, PA 16504
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