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PARTNERS IN GIVING Development Office of the Salesian Sisters Daughters of Mary Help of Christians

Salesian Sisters of St. John Bosco Development Office 659 Belmont Avenue North Haledon, NJ 07508-2397

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Clifton, NJ Permit No. 1104

Sr. Mary Rinaldi’s Letter

Centenary Calendar Save these Dates! January 31, Feast of Saint John Bosco Salesian Sisters Centennial Youth Rally New Orleans, LA

Dear Friends, We welcome the New Year in a spirit of praise and gratitude! Praise is the form of prayer which recognizes that God is God and it glorifies Him. Gratitude is that attitude of mind and heart which helps us to recognize our place in creation. It is with these sentiments that I join my Salesian Sisters in wishing you a truly blessed and happy 2008. The extraordinary photo across the front and back covers of this issue dates from 1941. It is one of the many treasures which we will be sharing with you this year, as we open the door to the celebration of our centenary in the United States. You will be able to stay tuned to events and stories throughout the year via our website,, and right here in Partners in Giving. For starters, mark your calendars for the special events listed at right, and plan on joining us as we celebrate 100 years – a real milestone for the Salesian Sisters! Our own Sr. Josephine Carini researched and wrote the story of our 100 years with its growing pains, expansion of ministry to the young, joys, sorrows, and real-life incidents. The Centennial History Book will be available by year’s end. The story on page 3 offers a sneak peak. The year 2007 brought new friends, leading to even greater success in our work for the young, from North, South, East and West. From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU! I close this simple New Year’s message with an inspiring quote from an anonymous writer: “A New Year is unfolding, like a blossom with petals closed tightly concealing the beauty within.” God bless you,

2 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

March 1 Partners Circle Annual Meeting and Dinner Tampa, FL March 8 Unveiling of a commemorative plaque, Opening Mass, Museum Exhibit, & Reception, Saint Michael Parish, Paterson, NJ April 11 Celebration, Pope Pius X School Roseto, PA April 13 Annual Spring Party North Haledon, NJ July 16 Official anniversary date of the first four Salesian Sisters’ arrival in the U.S. at New York Harbor in 1908. August 3 Sisters’ Jubilee Celebration, North Haledon, NJ October 30 Annual Partners Circle Ball, Garfield, NJ November (date TBA) Thanksgiving Basket, Tampa, FL December 7 Annual Christmas Party, North Haledon, NJ For more information on any of these events, to attend, or to get involved, please call Sr. Mary Rinaldi toll-free: (877) 687-6867, or e-mail We hope to see you!

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS


Our Centennial Year Celebration Begins! Editor’s note: It’s a New Year, and a very special year for the Salesian Sisters of Saint John Bosco: the 100th anniversary of their arrival in the United States! Over the next year, we will be introducing you to the Sisters’ rich history and the incredible impact they have made on families across the country – a story that will be told in our Centennial History Book (see page 4). Our Founders & History aint John Bosco and Saint Mary Domenica Mazzarello were the chosen instruments of God whose work, begun in the late 19th century, rapidly spread into a worldwide family dedicated to young people. Don Bosco’s dream was to teach the young practical life skills, and to nurture their hearts with the experience of God’s love. For over twenty years he worked only with boys. Then Mary, in one of his dreams, made it clear that girls “were her children, too.”

was Spartan but the dire situation surprised none of them. Work, privation, and sacrifice had been foreseen as part of their offering to the Lord for the fruitfulness of the mission. For many years there would even be Sisterly rivalry to see who could get along with the least for herself so the others could have more; who could do extra work so the others could have a bit of rest.


It was at that point that the Holy Spirit brought Don Bosco and Mary Mazzarello together. Her presence and work with the girls in her town resonated in many striking ways with his work for boys. But above and beyond the work itself, Don Bosco was deeply impressed by the selfless dedication that motivated her. From this spirit-filled encounter, the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians were born in 1872. The work begun by Saint John Bosco and Saint Mary Mazzarello in the late 19th century rapidly spread into a worldwide family dedicated to the service of youth.

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With courage, selfforgetfulness, and creativity they were able to overcome the On July 16, 1908, four Salesian Sisters arrived in New York many challenges that Harbor, and the ministry in the United States began. come with the total Sr. Angelina Andorno, seated (died 1953), is joined by giving of one’s life to (l-r) Sr. Veneranda Zammit (died 1934); Sr. Antoinette the Lord. God blessed Agliardi (died 1965); and Sr. Frances Delfino (died 1967). Sr. Angelina, Sr. Antoinette, and Sr. Frances are also shown their sacrifices, and the Sisters were able to in the 1941 photo on our cover, in the front row. establish schools and youth centers for the Christian Our Arrival in the U.S. education of the young, not only in n July 16, 1908, the first Paterson but throughout the U.S. four missionary Salesian Sisters arrived in New York In July 2008, it will be 100 years City. They settled at Saint Michael since the arrival of the first four Parish in Paterson, NJ, to begin Salesian Sisters. We continue to be their ministry with the children of actively engaged in ministering to Italian immigrants. youth and with youth, especially the poor and marginalized. And we rely The beginnings were challenging. on the support of all of you! Their new home consisted of three bare rooms, no furniture and a As our centennial theme goes, partial roof. They had no food of their own, nor a stove, and depended “Celebrating Youth . . . Building the Future! on the rectory for meals. Their diet


Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •



Our 18th Christmas Party was the Best!


n December 9, the Salesian Sisters hosted their 18th annual Christmas Party in North Haledon, NJ, to benefit the financial aid fund at Mary Help of Christians Academy. The event raised an all-time record of $82,000 to support deserving young women from inner-city Paterson and beyond. Event co-chairs Pat Connors and Terry Laudone led the magnificent charge by securing countless donated items that could be used for our gift baskets as well as items for the large, super, and mega-raffle tables.

Above, Sr. Frances Gumino and Fr. Steve Ryan share the Christmas spirit with Carmela Seminario of Totowa, NY, Annmarie Hessenius of Totowa, NJ, Angelo Forta of Rye Brook, NY, and Michelle Racanelli of Wallington, NJ. Right, the Christmas Party would not be such a success without the help of Terry Laudone and Pat Connors of Wyckoff, NJ. Below, Long-time supporters of the Christmas Party, Joseph Laudone (far left) and John Connors (far right) of Wyckoff, NJ, share some Christmas cheer with Fred Michaels of Pocono Pines, PA, and Mike Corcoran of Hasbrouck Heights, NJ.

More than 600 guests from the tri-state area and beyond joined in the fun. Santa (Kevin Mosca of Paterson) even made an appearance! Our largest group came from Paterson – 75 family and friends of Crown Roll Leaf, Inc., present thanks to the kindness of President and CEO, Maggie Waitts. Wow! That reservation set a new record, too. Heartfelt thanks to Pat and John Connors and Terry and Joe Laudone for their friendship and steadfast support. You are a blessing to us and to the young women of Mary Help! Thank you, thank you, thank you for ALL you do! Thank you, too, to the many friends of the Salesian Sisters who donated an item or two – and helped us make this our best Christmas party

4 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

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Right, Enjoying the Christmas Party were Salesian past pupil and friend Alma Curcio of Commack, NY, and Sr. Mildred Zanetti. Below, A happy trio: Sr. Suzanne Dauwalter, Barbara Hedgecock of Wayne, PA, and Sr. Maureen-Rose of South Philadelphia, PA

Right, Angela Larca of Wyckoff, NJ, and William Stuart of West Milford, NJ, helped immensely with ticket sales at our Christmas Party!

Left, Dame of Mary Help and Salesian past pupil Debi Debiak of Montclair, NJ, with her son, Palmer Holland.

Above, Sr. Gerard Barratino with her dear niece, Joan Oliver, of Yonkers, NY. Right, Salesian Sisters Development staffer Irene Damiano (far left) of Prospect Park, NJ, with faithful Christmas Party volunteers: Sofia Stuart of West Milford, NJ, Loretta Sagan of Clifton, NJ, and Marge Hnath of Wayne, NJ. Thank you, ladies, for another outstanding celebration!

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Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


Join the Celebration! Please support Our Centennial History Book by Dedicating a Year! Dear Friends, We Salesian Sisters have just completed 99 years of service to the young in the United States. On the threshold of celebrating our Centennial, I invite you to invest in the Salesian Sisters by dedicating a year or years to honor or memorialize a loved one, couple, family, or institution. The name(s) will be inscribed in a beautifully-bound Centennial History Book that is to commemorate the Salesian Sisters’ presence in the United States. Your one-time gift of $1,000, per year selected, will help underwrite the cost of this important Salesian treasure, and your honored name(s) will forever be a part of the legacy of St. John Bosco here in America. In gratitude, you will receive a complimentary copy of the Centennial history for each person’s name inscribed, and your memorial will be published in the book itself, along with a photo of your honoree. On the opposite page is a list of years. As you can see, we have already received a number of dedications – thank you! There is no limit to the number of honorees per year. Please join us for this once in a lifetime event! With gratitude and prayer,

Sr. Mary Rinaldi, FMA


I/we would like to forever be a part of the legacy of St. John Bosco here in America by dedicating ____ year(s) for the Salesian Sisters’ Centennial History Book Project. Please write down the name of your loved one(s) and your name (how you would like it to appear) beside the year of your choosing in the form on the opposite page and return the form along with this. Cost per dedication: $1,000.

My gift of $____________ is to be paid q now q monthly q quarterly q over 2 years by:

q Check (payable to Salesian Sisters) q Discover q VISA q MasterCard

q Please charge my card automatically

Credit Card No. ___________________________________ Exp. Date ______ / ______ Name(s) ________________________________________________________________________________ Address _______________________________________________________________________________ City ________________________________________________ State ____________ Zip ____________ Telephone _________________________ E-mail ____________________________________________ P LEASE




6 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1


Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

Year Honoree 1908 1909 1910 1911 1912 1913 1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 1919 1920 1921 1922 1922 1923 1924 1925 1926 1927 1928 1929 1930 1931 1932 1933 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945 1946 1947 1948 1949 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959 1960

Dedicated by

Casimiro Hernandez, Sr. Richard Gonzmart, Columbia Restaurant Jerry Rizzuto Joanne & Geraldine Rizzuto Theresa Rizzuto

Joanne & Geraldine Rizzuto

Margaret & James Sartoris Bishop Joseph Sartoris Anne Larywon Larywon Family Immaculate Conception School, LA Faculty, Staff, Students Anne K. Lebron Richard Lebron

Year Honoree 1961 1962 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1986

Alyda Jansen Calamita

Frank Calamita

Wilma & Ralph Rickman

Beverly Parcasio

Elizabeth Heldak

Betty Heldak

The Bagli Family

Dr. & Mrs. Vincent J. Bagli

Donald M. De Rose

The De Rose Family

1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005

La Salle High School, FL La Salle Alumni Immaculata-La Salle, FL Faculty, parents,

2006 2007

Mom & Dad Bertha Levonas

Dedicated by Michael Guarnieri Joseph Levonas

The Wagner Family Bob, Cynthia, Tricia, Cindi, & Bobbi Ann

Alphonse Alagia

The McAleer Family

Mannoia/Vitriola Family Frances & Michael Mannoia

St. Theresa School, NJ Home School Assoc. Arrival of the Salesian Sisters in Louisiana Sisters Community of Marrero, LA

Lucy Alagia The McAleer Family Donata & Adam Amatuzzi Rose & Joseph Amatuzzi Isola Olivieri Adelaide & Joseph Olivieri Hope McAleer The McAleer Family

Fr. Peter M. Rinaldi, SDB

Joseph J. McAleer, Sr.

The Martedi Family

The McAleer Family

Henry F. Roman Maryann Roman In Gratitude to the Salesian Sisters after Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana Faculty, Staff, Students of I.C. School Frank Calamita N. Johannes I. Calamita Faculty & Students Academy of Our Lady, LA


Partners Circle “Members”: Annual gift of





Ms. Tonia Kempfer A Friend

Dr. & Mrs. Andrew Saladino


Ms. Josephine Petrillo Mr. & Mrs. Theodore Reading

Mr. & Mrs. Jack Betwarda Mr. Vincent Cagnetta Mrs. Joseph Clair Mr. & Mrs. Charles Curcio Mr. & Mrs. Charles Curcio, Jr. Mr. Edward DeLuca Mr. John Lombardi & Family Ms. Carol Martindale Ms. Elizabeth Nardone Mrs. Joan Oliver Mr. & Mrs. Angelo Roncallo Mr. & Mrs. Angelo Silveri Mr. & Mrs. John Weaver A Friend

Mr. Ian H. Graham Mr. & Mrs. Robert Obenberger A Friend

CONNECTICUT Mr. Frank & Ms. Clara Merenda Mr. & Mrs. Robert Mosey Mr. Daniel Tomaselli A Friend Anonymous

FLORIDA Mr. & Mrs. Mark Anderson Mr. & Mrs. Bernardo F. Arenas Mr. & Mrs. Carlos Baldor, Sr. Mr. & Mrs. Carlos Baldor, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Javier Baldor Bianco & Mansfield, P.A. Mr. James J. Burrowes Mrs. Yoli Buss Mrs. Trudy Carey Dr. & Mrs. Antonio Castro Colonial Bank of Florida Mr. & Mrs. Ted Couch Mr. & Mrs. J.C. De Lotto Dr. & Mrs. Emilio Echevarria Mr. & Mrs. Luis Garcia Dr. & Mrs. Reynaldo Geerken Mrs. Rose Graziano Dr. & Mrs. Jack Guggino Mrs. Elsa Gutierrez-Janulionis Dr. & Mrs. Hernan Leon Mr. & Mrs. H. Tyson Lykes, II Mr. & Mrs. Robert Mace, Jr. Mr. & Mrs. Mark S. Reynolds Mr. & Mrs. Philip Rinaldi Mrs. Peggy Theis Mr. & Mrs. Ron Yates Mr. & Mrs. Rene Zarate Mr. Bob Zurek


NEW JERSEY Mr. & Mrs. Gary Baccaro Mr. & Mrs. Richard Badenhausen Mr. & Mrs. Robert Boland Mr. & Mrs. Larry Condit Ms. Elizabeth Crovella Mr. & Mrs. Frank Davies Mr. Anthony B. Della Cerra Dr. & Mrs. Frank De Maria Ms. Debi Debiak Mr. & Mrs. Robert Fox Mr. & Mrs. David Fusacchia Mr. & Mrs. Jerry Giamonco Captain & Mrs. Victor Goldberg Mrs. Theresa Gutto Mr. & Mrs. Chris Layton Mr. & Mrs. Charles Lechner Mr. & Mrs. Michael Losurdo Ms. Laura Mannarino Mr. & Mrs. Anthony Marangi Mr. & Mrs. John Peragallo Jr. Mrs. Ann Petrocelli Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Piotrowski Mr. & Mrs. Cameron Reid Mrs. Amanda Rodriguez Mr. & Mrs. John Soldoveri Mr. Joseph Spinelli Mr. & Mrs. William Stuart TD Banknorth Mr. & Mrs. Asterio Velasco

NORTH CAROLINA Mr. & Mrs. Paul Liotard Mr. & Mrs. Chester Michewicz, Jr.

OHIO Mr. & Mrs. Albert Klaben, Sr.

PENNSYLVANIA Mr. & Mrs. Jack Hedgecock Mr. Paul I. Sheaffer, II

TEXAS Mr. & Mrs. Bill Locklier

VIRGINIA Mrs. Dominique Faust


GEORGIA Mr. & Mrs. Charles Fantauzza

ILLINOIS Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Olivieri

KENTUCKY Mr. & Mrs. Jack Danehy

Students from Mary Help of Christians Academy in North Haledon, NJ. Salesian Schools in four states benefit from Partners Circle funding.

Partners Circle “Benefactors” Annual gift of $1,000 ARIZONA A Friend

Annual gift of $750 CONNECTICUT Mr. & Mrs. David McAleer

FLORIDA Mr. & Mrs. Declan Mansfield

NEW YORK Mr. & Mrs. Bill Leahy

NEVADA Mr. & Mrs. Timothy Murray

CALIFORNIA Geraldine & Joanne Rizzuto


FLORIDA Dr. Braulio Alsonso Mrs. Pilar Caso Ms. Judith Cataldo/ The Handmaiden Foundation Dr. & Mrs. Rod Jurado Mr. & Mrs. James W. Lee Dr. & Mrs. Hernan Leon Mr. & Mrs. James Major Mr. & Mrs. Frank Middendorf Mr. & Mrs. Gene Perez Judge & Mrs. A. Rodnite Mr. & Mrs. Mark Spada


Mr. & Mrs. Anthony Laino Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Massood Mr. & Mrs. Brian McAuley Mrs. John McMahon Mr. & Mrs. Mario Monaco Mr. & Mrs. Jim Muller Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Palladino Mr. & Mrs. Jack Ramsey Weaver Marine Agencies

NEW YORK Dr. & Mrs. Michael Altamura Ms. Lea Battiato Msgr. William T. Rodgers Mr. & Mrs. Matt Sabatine

NORTH CAROLINA Ms. Marianne O’Doherty

PENNSYLVANIA Dr. Allyson & Mr. Kevin Hardy

TEXAS Ms. Theresa C. Rauber

Ms. Rosemarie D’Alessandro Mr. Alfonso Daloisio Mr. Al De Vincenzo Mrs. Joseph Festa Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Granatell Mr. & Mrs. Donald Hofmann


he Partners Circle was founded in 1991 to provide unrestricted funds for urgent needs of the Salesian Sisters and their mission. These include support for capital needs, scholarship assistance, technology upgrades, and funds for those unforeseen situations that require immediate attention. Your donation to this unrestricted fund empowers the Salesian Sisters to continue their mission – the education and evangelization of today’s children. There are seven levels of membership, starting at $500, and these are listed on these three pages. Won’t you consider joining this dynamic group? Please call us toll-free today: (877) OUR-NUNS.


Partners Circle “Associates”


Joseph J. McAleer, Sr., Heritage Society Major Bequests to the Partners Circle CALIFORNIA


Richard Meissner, Meissner Manufacturing

Mr. & Mrs. Larry Peterson

FLORIDA Dr. & Mrs. Vincent Bagli Mr. Ray Campo Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Garcia Angel Oliva Family Mrs. Ann Murphey Dorothy Thomas Foundation



Mrs. Beatrice Lightfoot

Mrs. Pearl Kalikow

NEW JERSEY Tony Amato Family The Carini Family Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Hoffman


Partners Circle “Partners” Annual gift of $5,000 CALIFORNIA Ms. Doriana Sobek


Annual gift of $10,000 NEW JERSEY

Mr. & Mrs. Robert Harkins Mr. & Mrs. Bill McLaughlin Mr. Stephen Papetti Mr. & Mrs. Rodger Rohde Ms. Roberta Ruocco



Dr. & Mrs. Nelson Castellano Mr. & Mrs. James Millar Mr. & Mrs. Lee Pallardy

Mr. John Cassara


Mr. Anthony Petrocelli Ms. Celeste Tripi

TEXAS Mrs. Betty Turner Mr. & Mrs. Ray Wooldridge

Marcalus Family Foundation Robert R. Waitts Foundation

NEW YORK The Sabatine Foundation, in memory of Philip & Josephine Sabatine

TEXAS Mr. & Mrs. Fritz Duda, Sr.

Mr. & Mrs. Tony Chernalis

Partners Circle “Founders”: Annual gift of CONNECTICUT


Mr. Michael Guarnieri Dr. Joseph McAleer

Mr. & Mrs. Marco Brizzolara Mr. & Mrs. John Connors Mr. Anthony Gulino Ms. Ida Gulino Ms. Nancy Gulino Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Hoffman Mr. & Mrs. Edward Korn Mr. & Mrs. Michael Massood Mrs. Kathleen Medore Ms. Antonia Meola Mrs Moira McBride Murphy Ms. Rose Perone

FLORIDA Mrs. Janis Boyd Mr. Ernest “Cookie” Garcia Dr. Idalia Lastra

MASSACHUSETTS Ms. Patti Gauthier


Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Pfeifer Mr. & Mrs. Mark Swartzberg

NEW YORK Ms. Jordon Carroll Mr. & Mrs. Anthony Scala, Jr.


SOUTH CAROLINA Mr. & Mrs. Tom Aldinger

Leave a Legacy for the Salesian Sisters while providing for your heirs!


haritable gifts made through your estate are a wonderful way to provide lasting support for the Salesian Sisters. It can be possible to make such gifts while you minimize taxes and/or settlement costs and conserve more of your estate for loved ones.

Here are some points to remember: •

Estate gifts can be funded with cash, securities, real estate, or other property.

A gift of all or a portion of the “residue” of your estate refers to property remaining after all distributions to family and others have been satisfied.

Gifts may also be stated in terms of a percentage of an estate, thereby allowing gifts to increase or decrease with the value of one’s estate.

Gifts may also be directed to the Salesian Sisters from insurance policies, retirement plans, and bank and brokerage accounts.

It is possible to designate how you would like your gift used when it is received. You may provide that funds be used to meet the immediate needs of the Sisters, or you can designate that they be used for a specific purpose, such as education of at-risk youth, summer camp programs, the Salesian Sisters’ retirement home, or vocations.

Memorial gifts are often received through an estate. A memorial can serve as an enduring and loving tribute to one or more individuals while contributing a gift of hope to the Salesian Sisters.

As you can see, with a minimum of planning, it can be possible to support the Salesian Sisters in the future while first providing for your heirs in ways that can change with circumstances over time. If you would like to leave a legacy, our legal title is Missionary Society of Salesian Sisters, Inc., and our federal tax ID # is 22-6043753

Required to Take an IRA Distribution? If you are over the age of 70 & 1/2 and you are required to take taxable distributions from a traditional or Roth IRA, you may be interested in a special opportunity for tax-free giving to the Salesian Sisters. Please check with us or your advisor for more information. For more information, please call: •

Sr. Mary Rinaldi, Director of Development: (877) OUR-NUNS

Christina McAleer, Director of Advancement: (203) 921-9224

Salesian Sisters • 659 Belmont Avenue • North Haledon, NJ 07508-2301

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Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


he Sisters at Saint Joseph’s Provincial Center in Haledon, NJ, sing joyfully as they await the celebration of the coming of baby Jesus with a real-life Nativity scene, complete with choir of “angels.” Pictured above are (seated) Sr. Mary Anne Zito, Sr. Christine Hellen, Sr. Virginia D’Alessandro, Sr. Lydia Carini, Sr. Ruth Stecker, and Sr. Mary Baroni; (standing) Sr. Lucy Balistrieri, Sr. Rose Segarini, Sr. Rufina Delgado, Sr. Helene Godin, Sr. Carmen Morales, and Sr. Esther Cruz. The Holy Nativity was beautifully reenacted (at left) with Sr. Mary Winterscheidt as the Blessed Virgin Mary, Sr. Mildred Zanetti as Saint Joseph – and Sr. Virginia Dickey as the Star of Bethlehem!


n December 16, the community of North Haledon, NJ, along with the community of Camp Auxilium, trekked to New York City to see the Christmas Show at Radio City Music Hall, a wonderful present from Maggie Waitts. We loved it! Thank you!


Bundled up against the cold and snow are (back row) Sr. Denise Sickinger, Sr. Danielle Gonzalez, Sr. Margaret Wilhelm, Sr. Susan Bagli, Sr. Betty Ann Martinez, and Sr. Cecilia Besi; (front row) Sr. Catherine Novo, Sr. Ana Palacios, Sr. Mary Palladino, Sr. Anita Durocher, Sr. Catherine Altamura, and Sr. Theresa Kelly. The star photographer was Sr. Maryann Schaefer!

12 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

A New Year Sr. Phyllis Neves’ Letter


new year is upon us . . . the traditional moment to review our life and resolve how to live better in this New Year of 2008.

Charlie Brown once expressed his opinion about preparing for the New Year: “The best way to keep New Year’s Resolutions is in a sealed envelope in a bottom desk drawer.” Charlie Brown was obviously not ready to deal with the challenges and changes that a good resolution might pose. You and I, however, believe that Jesus calls us to continually grow in our commitment to be good citizens of this world as we journey toward our citizenship in Heaven.

any pockets holding names of old adversaries to whom we are not speaking – and can’t even remember why. No shirts of self-pity that we’ve worn too many years without cleaning. No glasses that allow us to see all of our differences but none of our likenesses. Maybe we shouldn’t have any shoes that have walked in the same ruts of old ideas and stubborn resistance to change for too many years. No luggage to kick along that holds years of yellowed and crumbling prejudices toward people no longer alive. No neckties or scarves to choke out laughter or joy or words of forgiveness. Maybe we should be like a baby who has just entered the world ready to celebrate and live life on its own terms. Maybe this child represents a newness, another chance to grow, to develop, and to learn.”

“A New Year’s resolution we can all aspire to.”

Saint Paul, in his Letter to the Colossians, shows us clearly what our ongoing resolution should look like: “Put on then, or clothe yourselves, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, with compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.”

Saint Paul helps us put it all together when he says: “Whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” This is a New Year’s resolution we can all aspire to!

By allowing God to work within our lives, we can change. We can grow closer to God and each other. The beginning of a New Year is often shown like this: an old man, wrapped in large flowing robes, dragging himself along like he’s not going to be around much longer, is replaced by a small baby, full of life, and clothed only in a diaper. Erma Bombeck once commented on why a baby in a diaper is the symbol for the New Year: “Maybe Little New Year is supposed to be a symbol of innocence, freshness, and optimism. Perhaps it is reasonable to believe that this baby in a diaper is a reminder to shed some of the baggage and old clothes of the last year. Maybe we shouldn’t have

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When the song of the angels is stilled When the star in the sky is gone When the kings and the princes are home When shepherds are back with their flocks The work of Christmas begins To find the lost To heal the broken To feed the hungry To release the prisoners To rebuild the nations To bring peace among us To make music in the heart Howard Thurman, 1985 A Blessed New Year to all!

Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •



Our Greenwich Visit – and a Surprise!


n October 28 and 29, Msgr. Frank C. Wissel, the pastor of Saint Mary Parish in Greenwich, CT, welcomed Sr. Mary Rinaldi and Salesian Sisters from Corpus Christi School in neighboring Port Chester, NY, to help raise awareness and support for the schools’ financial aid fund, as well as for the Sisters’ retirement and vocations funds. The Sisters were delighted to meet many lovely parishioners who embraced their many works and purchased lovely handmade afghans. A wonderful surprise occurred while visiting Saint Mary’s. Two lovely women stepped forward and introduced themselves, Vincenza Cianci and her sister, Rose Cianci Gasparrini of Greenwich. Why was this

Above, Msgr. Frank Wissel of Saint Mary Parish in Greenwich, CT, extended a warm welcome to the Salesian Sisters, including Sr. Agatha Cosentino, principal of Corpus Christi School; and Sr. Ines Molano, both bearing handmade afghans. Left, Sr. Rosalie Di Peri greets Vincenza Cianci and Rose Cianci Gasparrini of Greenwich, whose great uncle, Msgr. Felix Cianci (inset), hosted the very first Salesian Sisters in the U.S., 100 years ago. What an amazing surprise to meet these charming ladies!

meeting so special? Just months away from the Salesian Sisters’ Centennial Celebration in 2008, we found ourselves face-to-face with two direct descendants of the priest who welcomed the first four Salesian Sisters to America from Italy in 1908! The great uncle of Vincenza and Rose was Msgr. Felix Cianci of Saint Michael Parish in Paterson, NJ. He was a dear friend and advocate for the Sisters. He alone found shelter for them, giving them their first home in North America. Msgr. Cianci’s kindness set in motion the Salesian Sisters’ mission to the poor here in America. On behalf of the Salesian Sisters, thank you, Msgr. Wissel for your incredible kindness and hospitality. What a very special weekend it was for all of us! God bless you. – Christina McAleer

14 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

POPE JOHN PAUL II SCHOOL, CLIFTON, NJ – Pope John Paul II held an important meeting for parents concerning “Internet Safety and Cellphone Use.” The Passaic County Sheriff ’s Department, assisted by NetSmartz, made parents more aware of the dangers our children face while on the computer and cellphone.

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

Memorials Received between November 17, 2007 and January 2, 2008 Lorenza “Laurie” De Luca Mr. & Mrs. James Rory

Mary Sommariva Mr. & Mrs. Fred Brodsky

Margo Nadal Mr. & Mrs. Ovidio Mendez

Victor Di Maio Salesian Sisters

Laura Sirij Mrs. Madeline D. Fitzgerald

Joseph Terzo Salesian Sisters

Evelyn Schaefer Sr. Theresa Kelly, FMA, & the Salesian Sisters

Vincent Cioci Mr. James Burrowes


A Love That Lasts Forever You can honor a cherished relative or friend with an everlasting gift of love – a memorial. Our Partners in Giving Memorials & Tributes give you the opportunity to comfort those who have lost a loved one or to commemorate a special occasion. This gift lives forever. It supports the works of the Salesian Sisters & joins your loved ones to the prayers & works of the Sisters.

Received between November 17, 2007 and January 2, 2008 Sr. Gerard Barratino, FMA Mary Bridget Gaine & Family Anne & Joe Garcia: 50th Wedding Anniversary Salesian Sisters

Sr. Esther Cruz, FMA Mrs. Marilyn Karlich Charles Lechner Mr. & Mrs. John Fischer


ou may now adopt a Salesian Sister to pray for your deceased friend and family member for one year.

The name of your loved one will appear in our Partners in Giving magazine – a priceless gift to those you love. Give the gift that lasts forever. Enclosed is my Memorial/Tribute Gift of: q$25




Memorial for Name – DECEASED

Tribute for Name – LIVING

Occasion Please send an acknowledgement to: Name

The certificate (shown here) will be sent out immediately. It is a one-time gift; the suggested donation is $160. Adoption forms are posted online at:, or please call us to arrange: (877) OUR-NUNS.

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My Name Address Detach & mail to Sr. Mary Rinaldi 659 Belmont Ave l North Haledon, NJ 07508-2397 Please make checks payable to SALESIAN SISTERS

Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


Please “Give Us” One Day This New Year!


lease give us one, two, or three days out of the gift of 365! Won’t you consider it?

Think of one day when you remember a person for good, old memories. We will make a special day become even more meaningful by encircling the day with prayer and special remembrance. The best way to create good yesterdays is to say a bold, loving YES to all that each day brings. Saying YES to God’s plans in your life, asking for a loved one, remembering an anniversary or a birthday, a special meeting day, or a special day of grace, can all be given by the Salesian Sisters who join you in thanks, prayer, and special thoughts of you. Which one of the 365 days God gives you will you share with us? Thank you, and God bless you!

On December 3, Salesian Sisters from the Saint Joseph Provincial Center in Haledon, NJ, were given a very special treat. John and Pat Connors and Terry Laudone had planned for and provided an outing to the Christmas Show at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The presentation was a marvel. It was heartwarming to see such a reverent, elegant, yet simple portrayal of the birth of Christ. After the performance, at the invitation of our hosts, we gathered for a commemorative picture (above). The photographers had never seen quite a crowd and people around us snapped their own photos of our group! Will we ever return to Radio City for other performances of the Nativity? Who knows . . . but this one will remain like a precious jewel in our memory. Thank you, John and Pat and Terry and Joe!

Please Help Our Retired Sisters In Need! Please reserve this day(s) in 2008 in honor of my special intention to support the Endowment for the St. Joseph Provincial Center for our retired Sisters:





Day 1 (Month, day):


Day 2 (Month, day):


Day 3 (Month, day):


Total enclosed @ $100 per day: $ ____________ Please make your check payable to: Salesian Sisters

Name Address


Please detach & mail this form to: Sr. Mary Rinaldi, FMA, 659 Belmont Avenue, North Haledon, NJ 07508

16 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

Family Treasures The Dreamer of Our Family


he dreamer of our family was no idler, building castles in the air. Given the special person that he was, his dreams were equally extraordinary. Our “dreamer of dreams” was none other than Saint John Bosco (also known as Don Bosco). His “dreaming” continued for 60 years. It began when he was a boy of nine, with a dream that he would only understand many years later. It would be impossible to omit the vast treasury of dreams from a biography of Don Bosco, because they are integral to his life and his ministry.

dream visions have been preserved for future generations. We also know of them from his boys and his co-workers to whom he narrated his dreams and who were careful to record them because they were greatly esteemed as messages from God. They often foretold the future and were always accurate in their predictions. At other times, they revealed the souls of the boys to Don Bosco so he could guide and help them.

was only a boy and unable to talk to these youngsters about religion. At that moment, I saw, beside him, a Lady of majestic appearance. Taking my hand with great kindness, she said, ‘Look.’ All the children vanished. In their place, I saw many animals. ‘This is your field. This is where you must work,’ the Lady told me. ‘Make yourself humble, steadfast, and strong. What you will see happen to these animals, you will have to do for my children.’

I will share with you Don Bosco’s own words, the dream he had when he was nine. It was a dream that formed the foundation for all his life and ministry.

“I looked again. The wild animals had turned into many lambs, gently gamboling lambs, bleating a welcome for that Man and Lady. At this point in my dream, I started to cry and begged the Lady to explain what it all meant. She then placed her hand on my head and said, ‘In due time everything will be clear to you.’

After a day of hard work, uninterrupted work on behalf of his boys (a day “In due time, often filled with problems and pressures), Don everything will “When I was about nine years old, I had a dream Bosco would fall asleep be clear.” that left a profound and immediately enter impression on me for the into another world of ideas and visions that would stay within him rest of my life. I was in a very large playing field where a crowd of until dawn, when he would arise children were having fun. Some were exhausted. Don Bosco’s life hovered laughing, others were playing, and not between the natural and the a few were cursing. I was so shocked supernatural. His dreams revealed at their language that I jumped into God’s will for him and his boys at the their midst, swinging wildly and Oratory as well as the future of the Salesian Congregation. Although Don shouting at them to stop. Bosco referred to these episodes as dreams, it seems obvious that they can “At that moment, a Man appeared, nobly attired. He called me by name be called visions . . . visions which told me to place myself as a leader greatly influenced the decisions he over those boys, adding the words, made and the direction his congregations took during his lifetime. ‘You will have to win these friends of yours, not with blows, but with One may be asking at his point, “How gentleness and kindness. So begin right now to show them that sin is do we know of his dreams?” Don ugly and virtue, beautiful.’ Bosco had confided his experiences to Pope Pius IX who ordered him to “Confused and afraid, I replied that I write down everything, and these

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“I could never get that dream out of my head.” It was only when Don Bosco was advanced in years did he understand fully the meaning of this dream, and how he would come to transform the lives of young people. In the meantime, it served as a valid guide for the development of his works and especially of his method of education, which relied on reason, religion, and loving kindness. I hope I have given you another insight into the many-faceted gem that Jesus and Mary have given us in our Father and Founder, Don Bosco. – Sr. Mary Terzo, FMA

Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


Salesian Youth Report

SALESIAN YOUTH CENTER/BOYS & GIRLS CLUB, TAMPA, FL – On December 18, the sun shined extrabrightly for many of Tampa’s kids. Thanks to our many SYC friends, the Salesian Sisters and staff were able to give the kids a wonderful Christmas party, Florida-style – a barbecue complete with hamburgers, hot dogs, and even presents from Santa Claus! Although Santa came a little early to the SYC, the kids will remember this Christmas forever.

Thanks to the generosity of our many friends and supporters, every child who attends Salesian Youth Center programs received Christmas presents this year, which they happily showed off to their friends.

“Who wants a burger?” Sr. Mary Jackson and fellow Salesian Youth Center volunteers serve up the tasty Christmas barbecue.

18 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

Salesian Youth Report SAINT JOSEPH SCHOOL, TAMPA, FL – Saint Joseph’s announces its varsity soccer team! We are excited to participate with other diocesan schools in soccer matches. We are proud to be directed by Coach Carmen Lusigan and Coach Tito Alvarez who have put a lot of time and interest into organizing the team, developing team skills, and getting our school represented in match participation. Pictured at right are the proud members of the 2007-2008 squad. Good luck!

IMMACULATA-LA SALLE HIGH SCHOOL, MIAMI, FL – La Salle Center, an after-school program for the children of migrant workers in Homestead, FL, is funded and operated by the alumni of the Christian Brothers. On December 14, they brought a group of children to Immaculata-La Salle High School for a day of fun and camaraderie. The children were hosted by the girls’ soccer team (above). What a wonderful day!

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Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


Salesian Youth Report

CORPUS CHRISTI SCHOOL, PORT CHESTER, NY – Call it the “Fear Not Factor.” At Corpus Christi School, the Angels (above) are dancing with joy at the birth of Jesus. Finally God the Father sent His Son to earth to teach the people about His plan of Salvation for them. This is how the Angels told the story. Before the birth of Jesus took place, all the Angel Choirs had been waiting for years for this to happen. When the time came, the Archangel Gabriel was chosen to bring them to earth. The first message was to Mary, since God had chosen her to be the mother of Jesus. “Fear not, Mary: God has chosen you.” And Mary accepted God’s Plan.

The second message was to Joseph, the Carpenter who was engaged to marry Mary. “Fear not, Joseph, to take Mary as your wife, for God has chosen her to be the mother of His Son, who will save the people from their sins.” And Joseph believed and accepted God’s Plan. The third message was to the Shepherds watching their sheep on the hills of Bethlehem. “Fear not, for a Savior is born in a stable in Bethlehem. Go to see the place where the Child is.” When they arrived, all the choirs of Angels sang and danced with joy. And the Shepherds accepted God’s Plan and spread the Good News far and wide – as did the Corpus Christi Angels! ST. THERESA SCHOOL, KENILWORTH, NJ – The annual Thanksgiving Mass was celebrated in style, with Mrs. Morgese’s fifth-graders dressed as Pilgrims and Native Americans. The children also displayed some of the many food items they gathered which were donated for distribution to needy families in the community. God bless you, students!

20 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

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Salesian Youth Report THE ACADEMY OF OUR LADY, MARRERO, LA – Academy students continue to demonstrate the true spirit of giving in their service projects for the less fortunate. In response to the recent devastating wildfires in California, the students started a drive to collect toiletries and personal items to be given to the thousands of people who were displaced from their homes. Students put out a call to the community and collected dozens of boxes. The Religion 4 classes accepted this as a service project that was guided by the Senior Class.

MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS ACADEMY, NORTH HALEDON, NJ – Instrumental music is becoming more and more popular at Mary Help. Above, Sr. Ana Palacios teaches sophomores the basics of guitar playing. Students often perform during school Masses. Below, Sr. Susan Bagli started the Healthcare Club to meet the needs of students who are interested in medicine, nursing, and other health-related professions. Students gain firsthand experience in a real lab setting. Membership continues to grow, and we know that these young ladies are on the right track towards achieving their dreams!

Beth Carbo, Academy of Our Lady senior, pours out just a few of the many thousands of pennies collected to benefit Families Helping Families in the Academy’s annual “Penny War” fundraiser.

The student body also took part in an exciting fundraising project called “Penny Wars” to benefit “Families Helping Families,” a program which has been adopted by the Louisiana Association of Student Councils as its official charity for 2007-08. The Academy’s student council assigned each grade level a huge, plastic bottle to collect pennies for one week. These pennies build up and are totaled each day, and a lively competition ensues between the grade levels to see which can collect the highest total. The real fun comes when students donate nickels, dimes, and quarters, as all “silver” coins are deducted from each grade’s fundraising total. Of course, all of the coins go towards the school’s grand total for the fund raiser. This year, all of those little coins collected in plastic jugs totaled up to $2,200 which was donated to “Families Helping Families.” – Joseph Bordlee

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Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •



Students Learn to Share Their Faith


n an effort to respond to one of the most important needs of the catechetical ministry of the Catholic Church in our area, a formation program is being offered to students at Mary Help of Christians Academy in North Haledon, NJ, who are interested in being prepared to serve as parish catechists. Some of the program’s 25 students are already helping as teacher aides, substitutes, and, in some cases, as catechists. The goal of this program is to enable the students to grow in their own faith while preparing them to share their faith with children in their Parish Faith Formation Program for Catholic children who attend public schools. The program has been approved by the Paterson Diocesan Catechetical Office and will lead to a Diocesan Catechetical Certificate upon completion. The students are receiving the content

Sr. Theresa Kelly (at left) leads Mary Help students in an overview of the catechetical certification process. Best of luck to all the girls in the rewarding work ahead!

of the faith in their regular theology classes throughout their four years at Mary Help. In addition, they have monthly Saturday sessions that provide an understanding of the catechetical process, how children learn at different age levels, teaching methods, and lesson planning.

We are grateful for the opportunity to offer this vital formation for so many wonderful young people and adults who are committed to bringing the message of God’s love to His children. – Sr. Theresa Kelly, FMA ast summer, the Salesian Sisters of Our Lady of Peace Province (South Africa-Zambia) participated in workshops in media, communications, and ongoing formation. At the request of the local Provincial, Sr. Roberta Tomasi, our own Sr. Louise Passero traveled from the U.S. to conduct the week-long workshop. Her session on “Media and Communications for Today’s Educators” covered such topics as critical reading of films as bearers of messages and values, verbal and nonverbal communication, advertising, photography and picture editing, PowerPoint, and the Internet with its benefits and dangers.


Well done, Sr. Louise! We’re proud of you!

22 • Partners in Giving • Volume XVIII • Issue 1

Please call us toll-free: 877-OUR-NUNS

PARTNERS IN GIVING is a bimonthly magazine published by the

Salesian Sisters of St. John Bosco Development Office 659 Belmont Avenue North Haledon, NJ 07508-2397 Telephone: (973) 904-0102 Toll-free: (877) OUR-NUNS Fax: (973) 904-0041 E-mail: Website: Federal Tax ID # 22-6043753 Missionary Society of Salesian Sisters, Inc.

CAMP AUXILIUM, NEWTON, NJ – Three-year-olds got into the Christmas spirit in a big way, posing with Santa and his friends (above) and singing “Counting the Days ‘til Christmas” (right) in the annual Christmas program.

PRIVACY POLICY: Your name, address, and other information are held in confidence by our ministry and will never be sold, rented, or given to any other organization.

Editorial Board Dr. Joseph McAleer, Editor Sr. Mary Rinaldi, FMA, Development Director Mrs. Christina McAleer, Director of Advancement Ms. Janet Arias, Production Manager Mrs. Ariane Nagrosst, Editorial Assistant Partners in Giving welcomes letters, articles, and photos from contributors. We reserve the right to edit for publication.

Have You Moved? Please help us update our mailing list. If the address on this magazine on the back cover is incorrect, kindly fill in this form with the correct information & mail it to our office. Many thanks! Name: Address on label:

CORPUS CHRISTI SCHOOL, PORT CHESTER, NY – Look everybody – it’s my letter to Santa Claus! Students surround Sr. Margaret Rose Buonaiuto (in a reindeer t-shirt) with their proud creations, hopeful that wishes were granted on Christmas morning.

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Partners in Giving • Winter 2008 •


Winter 2008 Partners in Giving