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Partners in GivinG

Development Office of the Salesian Sisters, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians

Miami Students Support Haiti Relief

Sr. Mary Rinaldi’s Letter Dear Friends: Joy to the world! The Lord is come. Let earth receive her King. Let every heart, prepare Him room... The season of giving is upon us once again, as we anticipate the joy of Christmas and the miracle of the Incarnation. At Mary Help of Christians Academy in North Haledon, NJ, generous students like seniors Gabriella Corbo and Shannon Zang on our cover started early, assembling “boxes of joy” for needy children in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Guatemala. How inspiring! See story on page 20.


emonstrating charity and good will towards the needy is one of the missions of the Catholic Church, and the Salesian Sisters take on this mission with ambition and enthusiasm. Students at Immaculata-La Salle High School in Miami, FL, embrace this spirit of helping the needy with on-going efforts for the victims of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti.

Some news to report: • To say that our Dames of Mary Help Gala, marking the 25th anniversary of the Partners Circle, was a fabulous success is the understatement of the year! Friends and family gathered from far and wide to support Mary Help and honor the inaugural inductees of our new “Partners Circle Hall of Fame.” Read all about it on pages 3-8.

All around the school community, groups stockpiled food, clothing, and supplies (above) for the victims of the hurricane. Student groups organized a partnership with the local fire department and were able to collect an entire truckload of canned goods. ILS sports teams contributed as well, and the Salesian Sisters collected monetary donations totaling over $5,000. One particularly thoughtful student, senior Valeria Occhi (right), requested donations for Haiti in lieu of birthday gifts from family and friends.

• In Tampa, the annual Thanksgiving Basket fundraiser for the Salesian Youth Center and Villa Madonna School just keeps getting better! Story and photos on pages 18-19. • God bless the students at Immaculata-LaSalle High School in Miami, FL, for helping the people of Haiti, as you will read at right. And I am delighted to report that our own appeal raised over $36,000 for the Salesian Sisters in Haiti. Thank you, everyone! • Don’t return those unwanted Christmas gifts! Please consider donating them to our 2017 Spring Party, to benefit Mary Help of Christians Academy’s Financial Aid Fund. Thank you!

The spirit of giving is nothing new at ImmaculataLa Salle. The Wishbone Project, started by the late and beloved Maria Garces, a teacher and mother at ILS, is a Thanksgiving food drive for needy families in the local community. More than 500 families enjoyed a robust Thanksgiving meal this year, including biscuits, gravy, veggies, cranberry sauce, stuffing, potatoes, corn-on-the-cob, all the usual fixin’s, and, of course, gift-cards for turkeys.

• Need an end-of-year tax letter? Please contact the Development Office. On behalf of the Salesian Sisters, I wish you and your loved ones a Blessed and very Merry Christmas and a healthy, fruitful, and joyous 2017! Peace,

– Sr. Kim Keraitis, FMA


Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

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A Dames of Mary Help Gala to Remember!


here was no finer or more memorable way to mark the 25th anniversary of the Salesian Sisters Partners Circle than the annual Dames of Mary Help Gala, held on October 28 at The Grove in Cedar Grove, NJ. More than 250 friends and family gathered to raise funds for Mary Help of Christians Academy, generating close to $300,000 for scholarships and operating expenses. In terms of honorees, this year’s Gala was an embarassment of riches! We paid special tribute to the late founder of the Partners Circle, Joseph J. McAleer, Sr., and recognized 25 individuals or couples for their leadership and loyalty over a quarter century. They were all inducted into the newly-established “Partners Circle Hall of Fame” (see pages 6-8). For 25 years the unrestricted Partners Circle fund has covered the urgent needs of the Salesian Sisters, from scholarships and technology upgrades to those unforeseen situations that require immediate attention. Mary Help of Christians Academy has been a major recipient. Since 1991 the Partners Circle has raised more than $5 million. The evening opened with a beautiful rendition of “Through the Years,” performed by Mary Help senior Nicole Pinuela, as a slide show displayed photos of the honorees and highlights from 25 years of giving. Sr. Mary Rinaldi was joined by the current chairman of the Partners Circle, Dr. Joseph J. McAleer, Jr., in calling forth the honorees and bestowing on each a special medal.

Above, Mary Helpers are called to the dance floor to get the party started! At left, former Dames of Mary Help Chair Beverly Rohde of Saddle River, NJ, presents a bouquet of gratitude to Twinkie Polizzi, who completes her second term as Chair of the Dames.

“My father, if he were here, would be humbled, but also delighted,” Dr. McAleer told the gathering. “All of you honor my father by the many ways, public and private, you support the Sisters and their mission to young people. Long may you continue to do so!” Our standard Gala hallmarks were all present: a fabulous cocktail hour and silent auction; a spirited live Mary Help senior Nicole Pinuela earned a standing ovation for her rendition of “Through the Years.” (Photos by Lorraine Corsale)

auction led by the intrepid Jill Doherty; the March of the Teddy Bears; and a “Stand Up for Kids” challenge led by our dear friend, Joe Pesci. Dinner and dancing to the tunes of Unique Musique were but cherries on the magnificent cake! Heartfelt gratitude goes to the Dames of Mary Help, led by retiring chair Twinkie Polizzi; the three Gala chairs: Sonya Fernandez, Maria Losurdo, and Christina McAleer; and our special benefactors, the McAleer Family. As you will see on the next few pages, a grand time was had by all!

Table centerpieces featured photos of the Hall of Fame inductees.

Sr. Lise Parent and Sr. Susan Bagli congratulate Hall of Famers Mary Ellen and Anthony Scala of Port Chester, NY.

The fabulous silent auction and cocktail hour!

Enjoying the party are members of the Simone family!

Carol and Diane Amato of Maywood, NJ, celebrate with Sr. Lise Parent and Michael and Patty Peyko of Paramus, NJ.


Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

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Thanks to a generous friend, every student received a teddy bear and a chance for a prize!

Sr. Esther Cruz with her faithful Adopter and honoree, Michael Guarnieri!

Rosanne James of Franklin Lakes, NJ, surprises Sr. Virginia Dickey with a kiss.

Rodger Rohde of Saddle River, NJ, hits the dance floor with Sr. Ramona BeltrĂŠ!

Michael D’Alessandro dances with his mother-in-law, Mary Maloney.

Dorothy Bagli, Jeanne Jenusaitis, and Diva Muller enjoy the vast culinary selections during the cocktail hour.



Our Partners Circle Hall of Fame Inductees! Joseph J. McAleer, Sr. (1929-2001) Stamford, CT

In 1991, Joseph founded the Salesian Sisters Partners Circle and served as its first Chairman. As he famously told Sr. Mary Rinaldi when they first met, “We shall be Partners!” He worked tirelessly to expand membership and encourage financial support for the Sisters and their vital mission to young people.

Jeanette & Michael Altamura

Croton-on-Hudson, NY Generous and loyal friends of the Salesian Sisters who honor Dr. Michael’s sister, Sr. Catherine Altamura.

Anthony Amato (1930-1996) Lodi, NJ

Tony served on the original committee for the building of the new retirement home.


Vincent Bagli

Javier Baldor

Proud father of Sr. Susan, Dr. Bagli served as Chairman of the Partners Circle.

Javier served two terms as Partners Circle Chairman. Family-funded scholarships honor his late sister, Ana Maria.

(1925-2014) Franklin Lakes, NJ

Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

Tampa, NJ

Phyllis & Tony Chernalis Franklin Lakes, NJ

Where would the Sisters be without their beloved Market Basket delicacies at every event?!

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Alma & Charles Curcio Commack, NY

A past pupil, Alma looked for a way to give back – so she and Charles joined the Partners Circle!

Rosemarie & A.M. “Bud” D’Alessandro Franklin Lakes, NJ

Founding Partners Circle members alongside Joseph McAleer, Sr.!

Andrea Farrier

Kathy & Emilio Echevarria

Diana Ekonomou

Tampa, NJ

Brandon, FL

A past pupil, Dr. Emilio joined the Partners Circle with Kathy at its very beginning.

Diana served as President of the South Board and is a champion of the Salesian Youth Center.

Joseph Garcia

Tampa, FL

Brandon, FL

Dr. Andrea served as President of the South Board and is active in the Southern Dames fundraising group.

Past Chairman of the Partners Circle, Joe and his wife, Anne, have been active and generous members since the very beginning.

Mary & Luis Garcia

Michael Guarnieri

Tampa, FL

Stamford, CT

Luis served as Treasurer of the Partners Circle Board. He and Mary are loyal SYC supporters.

Mike has served two terms as Chairman and three as Treasurer of the Partners Circle Board!

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Judy & Giacomo Guggino

Robert Harkins

Tampa, FL

Franklin Lakes, NJ

A past pupil, Dr. Jack and Judy are charter members of the Partners Circle and Adopt a Sister.

Past President of the North Board, Bob and his wife Maryann sponsor many students.

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Barbara & Jack Hedgecock

Michael Massood

Valley Forge, PA

Wayne, NJ

A past pupil, Barbara joined the Partners Circle with Jack to give back for blessings received.

Charter member of the Partners Circle, Mike was of vital assistance at the very beginning.

William McLaughlin

Pat & Frank Middendorf

Invited to the Board by Dr. Vincent Bagli, Bill served as Chairman of the Partners Circle.

A love of children brought Pat and Frank to the Salesian Sisters and the Partners Circle.

Franklin Lakes, NJ

Lucy Nardella

Sanibel, FL

Lya & Joseph Pfeifer

(1927-2002) Elmwood Park, NJ

Wyckoff, NJ

An orphan brought to the Sisters at age 2, Lucy was a charter member of the Partners Circle and a professor of languages.

As Treasurer of the Partners Circle, Joe oversaw construction of the retirement home. He and Lya are staunch supporters!

Michael Polizzi

Elsa & E.J. Salcines

Mary Ellen & Anthony Scala

Betty Turner

Port Chester, NY

Dallas, TX

Invited to the Board by Bill McLaughlin, Mike has served two terms as President of the North.

A past pupil, Judge E.J. and Elsa have been unfailing in their loyalty and generosity!

As parents of Salesian students, Mary Ellen and Tony desired to give back in gratitude.

Betty has been a loyal and generous member of the Partners Circle and Adopt a Sister for 25 years!

Franklin Lakes, NJ


Tampa, FL

Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

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96 Welcome



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 annual contribution to this fund empowers the Sisters to continue their mission: To Provide Financial Assistance and Volunteer Services to the Salesian Sisters and to the Young People in their Care for the Advancement of Education, Vocations, and Community Life.

new or upgraded Partners Circle Members so far in 2016! Shown in RED

There are nine levels of membership, starting at $250, and are listed on these three pages. Won’t you consider joining this dynamic group for Christmas, or in 2017, our 26th year?   Please call us today: (877) OUR-NUNS. Thank you!

Joseph J. McAleer, Sr., Heritage Society Major Bequests California Richard Meissner, Meissner Manufacturing

Florida Dorothy & Dr. Vincent Bagli Josie & Ray Campo Anne & Joseph Garcia PC Mrs. Ann Lowry Murphey Angel Oliva Family

Partners Circle “Stewards” Annual gift of $11,000 Texas Mrs. Betty Turner

The Dorothy Thomas Foundation

Indiana Mrs. Beatrice Lightfoot

New York Mrs. Pearl Kalikow

New Jersey

PC = a member of the Partners Circle National Board of Trustees

Tony Amato Family The Carini Family Mr. Anthony Petrocelli Ms. Roberta Ruocco

Partners Circle “Partners” Annual gift of $5,500 Florida

Mr. & Mrs. Javier Baldor PC Mr. & Mrs. James Millar Lydia & John Oliva

New Jersey Mr. & Mrs. Tony Chernalis In memory of Mr. & Mrs. C.H. Church, Jr. Joanne & Al Daloisio Mr. & Mrs. Robert Harkins PC

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Ms. Celeste Tripi Mr. Vincent Waraske

Mr. Bill McLaughlin PC A.J. & Mindy Papetti Mr. & Mrs. Rodger Rohde Christopher & Corinne Schiavo & The Shepherd and the Knucklehead Pub Joseph & Rita Weiner

Welcome New 2016 Members !

Salesian Sisters’ Partners Circle


New York Mr. John Cassara

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Welcome New 2016 Members in Red!

Salesian Sisters’ Partners Circle

Partners Circle “Friends” Annual gift of $3,300 Connecticut Mary Bridget Gaine

Florida Dr. Idalia Lastra

New Jersey Mario & Arline Monaco

Pennsylvania Christopher & Gemma Chong Mr. & Mrs. Vincent DeBow

Partners Circle “Founders” Connecticut

New Jersey


Mr. & Mrs. Donald Hofmann Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Laudone Marilyn & Dale Livi Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Massood Mrs. Moira McBride Murphy Mr. & Mrs. Stephen Papetti Rose Perone Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Pfeifer PC Maria Sturchio

Mr. Michael Guarnieri PC Christina & David McAleer PC Dr. Joseph McAleer PC John & Pat Connors Anthony & Diana Ekonomou Lowry Murphey Family Foundation Mr. & Mrs. Mark Oliva PC Mr. Fredy Padovan

Massachusetts Mr. & Mrs. Dennis Clair

Mr. Ian H. Graham Mr. & Mrs. Anthony Scala

Pennsylvania In Loving Memory of Sr. Adeline Salvetti, FMA

South Carolina Mr. & Mrs. Tom Aldinger

New York Jordon Carroll Mr. & Mrs. James Dell’Orto

Partners Circle “Benefactors” Annual gift of $1,100 Arizona Mrs. Ann Marie Forster

California Mr. & Mrs. Robert Obenberger


Linda & Peter Christiansen PC Mr. & Mrs. Salvatore Zichichi

Florida Mr. & Mrs. John Anello Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Caballero PC Terrell & Joe Clark Dr. Andrea & Sean Farrier PC Mrs. Aida Jurado Mr. & Mrs. Jim Major Dr. Patricia Mergo

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Annual gift of $2,200

Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

Mr. & Mrs. Frank Middendorf Robert Nocek & Ann Bryk Gene & Linda Perez Mr. Charles B. Schmalz

Michael & Mary Losurdo Mr. & Mrs. Michael Massood Mrs. Carolyn Young


Ms. Lea Battiato John W. Lombardi & Family The Sabatine Foundation Mr. & Mrs. Angelo Silveri

Mr. Robert Reiter

Massachusetts Mr. & Mrs. Neil Holmes


North Carolina Chester & Monica Michewicz

Ms. Marianne O’Doherty

New Jersey Ms. Debi F. Debiak Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Granatell Mr. & Mrs. Anthony M. Laino

New York

Pennsylvania Mr. & Mrs. Bob Danch Allyson & Kevin Hardy

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Annual gift of $825 Florida Declan & Paula Mansfield Anne & Fred Michaels Rene & Phyllis Rodriguez Mr. & Mrs. Terry Wood

New Jersey Mr. & Mrs. Anthony Della Cerra Kathleen & Vic Medore

South Carolina Sandra M. Freeman

Partners Circle “Members” Arizona Anonymous

California Joanne & Geraldine Rizzuto

Connecticut Mr. & Mrs. Edward Goin Mr. & Mrs. Robert J. Mosey Anonymous

Kathy & John Pedrero PC Hon. & Mrs. E.J. Salcines PC Ms. Maria C. Torreiro Mr. & Mrs. Ron Yates

Georgia Mr. & Mrs. Charles Fantauzza

Illinois The Mills Family Adelaide Olivieri



Dr. Kenneth Alonso Mr. & Mrs. Mark Anderson Mr. & Mrs. Carlos Baldor Mr. & Mrs. Carlos Baldor, Jr. PC Dr. & Mrs. Robert Cano Mrs. Trudy Carey Dr. & Mrs. Antonio Castro Dr. & Mrs. Emilio Echevarria PC Mr. & Mrs. Luis Garcia PC Dr. Giacomo & Mrs. Judy Guggino Ms. Maria Restrepo-Forte Mr. & Mrs. Mark S. Reynolds Rudy Rodriguez

Mr. & Mrs. George LeBlanc

PC = denotes a member

of the Partners Circle National Board of Trustees

Massachusetts Ms. Josephine Petrillo Mr. & Mrs. Theodore Reading

Welcome New 2016 Members in Red!

OUR MISSION The Salesian Sisters’ Partners Circle provides Financial Assistance and Volunteer Services to the Salesian Sisters and the Young People in their Care for the Advancement of Education, Vocations, and Community Life.

Annual gift of $550 Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Piotrowski Mr. & Mrs. Cameron Reid E.N. Sarantis Mrs. Theresa Unanue Mrs. Kathleen Zayatz

New York Michael & Jeanette Altamura Mr. & Mrs. Jack Betwarda Mr. & Mrs. Kevin Clair Mrs. Rose Mary Clair Terence & Patricia Clair Mr. & Mrs. Charles V. Curcio Ms. Claire Dell Mr. Walter Lazarcheck Mr. & Mrs. Mario Masciandaro Mr. & Mrs. Mark Nardone Mrs. Margaret Reilly-Antalec

New Jersey

North Carolina

Tiziana Anello, M.D. Larry & Mary Anne Condit Ms. Anita Cronk John J. Eccleston Mr. & Mrs. Michael G. Ferrito Dr. & Mrs. Louis Gambetta PC Joann Giamonco Teresa Gutto James Lane Laura Cosentino Mannarino Mrs. Diva Muller Mrs. Maureen O’Halloran Mrs. Christine Peragallo

Mr. & Mrs. Paul Liotard

Ohio Mr. & Mrs. Dale Kovach Dr. & Mrs. George H. McAfee

Pennsylvania Mr. & Mrs. Jack Hedgecock

Virginia Mrs. Dominique Faust Mr. Michael Maurer Karl & Laura Zauner

Salesian Sisters’ Partners Circle

Partners Circle “Associates”

Welcome New 2016 Members in Red!


Partners Circle “Quarter Century Club” Annual gift of $250

During this, our 25th Anniversary Year, we’ve made it even easier to join the Partners Circle, with a new commemorative level of membership: the “Quarter Century Club,” a cost of just $250 per year. Entrance to the club will be limited only to introductory members who join in 2016. The response so far has been outstanding! Welcome new Partners in RED!

California Mr. Richard Suda Rev. Paula T. Webb

Connecticut Mrs. Frances M. McAleer Mr. Patrick J. Waide, Jr. Anonymous

Salesian Sisters’ Partners Circle

Florida Mr. & Mrs. Jon Barry Kurt & Laura Badertscher Mr. & Mrs. Fred A. Cairoli Mrs. Suzanne Carlisle Mr. & Mrs. Manuel Fernandez Mr. & Mrs. Arthur Fierman Mr. & Mrs. Edward Gomez, Jr. Amy & Kevin Jarman Mr. & Mrs. John Mangin, Jr.


artners Circle Board Member (and new Hall of Fame inductee) the Honorable Judge E.J. Salcines of Tampa, FL, has never forgotten his roots! Here he visits with Sr. Mary Winterscheidt (center), 92 years old, his second-grade teacher from St. Joseph’s School in Tampa! They paid a visit to the hilltop Salesian cemetery in North Haledon, NJ, with Sr. Mary Bertha Paquin and Sr. Carmen Morales.

John H. & Pauline Pedrero Ms. Alina Roces Mr. and Mrs. Paul Schmid Mr. & Mrs. Richard Stowers Jim & Rita (Zoppo) Vietmeier

New Hampshire Mr. & Mrs. Thomas DiMicelli

New Jersey Dr. & Mrs. Joseph Amatuzzi Collins & Hogan Families Theodore & Lynda Leo Ms. Mary Bernadette Mazauskas Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Nowak Gregory & Stephanie Monaco Anna & Richard Spalckhaver

Robert and Constance Sumas Karla T. Villarin Mr. Edward M. Zambrano

New York Mr. & Mrs. Joseph Collison Mr. and Mrs. Anthony Dell’Orto Ms. Peggeann Larywon Mrs. Carolyn Mesler

Pennsylvania Mrs. Judith Falcone Lichty

South Carolina Mr. & Mrs. John Bedlek Elizabeth Craig & Michael Reeves, Jr.

The One Thing Necessary Sr. Karen Dunn’s Letter


ran into an item on Pinterest that might apply to those who look toward the Christmas Season with a mix of anticipation and dread. It was the goldfish in the classic children’s story, “The Cat in the Hat.” Poking his head out of the water in conversation with the children, the fish spouted these words: “Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answer is simple.” Complications and details and to-do lists: they are in that bag of dread as we try to “get it all together” to celebrate Christmas. That bag can weigh on the steadiest of nerves and jeopardize the very relationships we treasure during this Season. Even the best of planners who shop in July (how do they DO that??) can get tripped up in the weeks of Advent preparations. Parties, programs, rehearsals, driving – all the things we love – can, in their excess, take their toll. Complications in the great shuffle of scheduling, preparing, and celebrating bring weariness, stress, disappointment, and, sometimes even hurt. The wisdom of Dr. Seuss’ goldfish points us to the simple answer to the complications of the Christmas Crazies. It is, in fact, the remedy Jesus Himself offered when meeting His fretting friend Martha, who was busy buying, baking, preparing, and all about “many things.” It’s simple. “Only one thing really matters,” said Jesus.

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Of course! Only one thing really does matter. It is Christ the Lord! It is His merciful and lavish love that embraces humanity and each of us as we are in all our messiness of life.

social and business demands that come at this time.

It is Christ the Lord who gives meaning to our living. It is Christ the Lord who, through His grace, acts in us through thoughts and deeds

So please remember: to survive the complications of the Christmas Crazies, the answer is simple: It is Christ the Lord! This year, I wish each and every one of you an Advent of:

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answer is simple.”

A stolen moment of prayer and focus before every office party, errand, celebration, or moment of preparation.

Joyful anticipation for the Lord’s coming to fill the longings of your heart and of the world.

• A balance of Christmas Carols in your listening. • Child-like belief in the power and goodness of God in our world. • Generous mercy towards loved ones and the unloved.

of mercy and love. It is Christ the Lord who surrounds us with warmth and that intimacy of family that we treasure this time of year.

• A wide heart to embrace those who cannot celebrate.

Only one thing really matters: Christ’s love for me and how much I can radiate that love. Christ’s love, that one thing necessary, can carry me as I respond to family requests, shop, get the cards done, stand in line at the checkout, sit in mall traffic, oblige the children’s overabundance of energy, and meet the

• A commitment to love Him who loved us into being. • A heart like Mary’s that takes life’s moments and ponders them. A blessed Advent and Christmas Season to all of you, and to our entire Salesian Family!

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Sr Nivia’s Parents

A Love That Lasts Forever


he Salesian Sisters extend their deepest condolences and prayers to Sr. Nivia Arias, whose parents passed away in October. Her father, Alberto Carlos Arias, died in Tampa, FL, on October 9, at the age of 90. Ten days later, her mother, Maria Luisa Arias, 89, passed away. In addition to Sr. Nivia, the Arias are survived by their son, Carlos; his wife, Debra; and two grandaughters, Ashley and Kalyn.

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, joining our loved ones to the prayers of the Salesian Sisters while supporting their good works. The name of your loved one will appear in our Partners in Giving magazine – a priceless gift to those you love.

Received between October 3 and November 22, 2016 Sr. Antoinette Cabrera, FMA Mrs. Cynthia Smith

Raymond Titmas Mrs. Bernice Titmas

Petrina Guarisco Mr. Paul Cannillo Mr. & Mrs. Robert De Giso Ms. Agnes Buckley Ms. Joanne Casterella Ms. Beatrice Cerasoli

Mary Baio Ms. Rosalie Polizzi

Give the gift that lasts forever. Enclosed is my Memorial/Tribute Gift of: ____ $25

____ $20



Memorial for Name – DECEASED

Tribute for Name – LIVING


Samuel DaGrossa Ms. Joan Gourin

Frank Llende Mr. & Mrs. Reynee Dominguez

Charles Trentacosta Mrs. Bernice Titmas

Elizabeth Dugan Ms. Kathy Hamblin

Domenic Titmas Mrs. Bernice Titmas

Winfrid Schnitzler Mr. Peter Shen


Please send an acknowledgement to: Name Address My Name Address

Detach & mail in the enclosed envelope to: Sr. Mary Rinaldi 659 Belmont Avenue, North Haledon, NJ 07508-2397 Please make checks payable to SALESIAN SISTERS

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Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

Laura Lydic Mrs. Vivian R. Doland

James Paone Mrs. Kathleen Kohler

Sr. Anita Durocher, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski

Andrew Pyryt Mrs. Kathy Adamczyk

Sr. Balbina Lopez, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski

Sr. Mary Winterscheidt, FMA Mr. John W. Lombardi & Family

Sr. Louise Passero, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski

Sr. Catherine Altamura, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski Mr. & Mrs. Michael Jobstle

Sr. Carmela Termine, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski Sr. Mary Anne Zito, FMA Mrs. Catherine Burzynski

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Making Vocation! Headlines Around the Province


alesian Novice, Sr. Kelly Schuster (above), was selected from among dozens of young religious in formation from around the country to participate on a sixperson vocations panel moderated by Deacon Pedro Guevara-Mann and broadcast live by Salt+Light TV on October 30 from Overland Park, KS, where the 2016 Convocation of the National Religious Vocations Conference was held. You can catch the event, “So you think you’ve been called?”, online at nrvc. Bravo, Sr. Kelly!


r. Theresa Lee, Vocations Director, and Colleen Quigley, a Salesian Lay Missionary just returned from an incredible year in Cambodia, teamed up at St. Anselm’s College in New Hampshire to share the good news about Salesian life and missionary service. Colleen’s highlights included giving and receiving love with all the children, and living with the Sisters and other volunteers. To learn more, visit

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alesian Sisters joined junior professed Sisters on their formation weekend for a pilgrimage to the National Shrine of Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, MA. “God’s mercy is not bound by time or space, but we wanted to make sure we absorbed all the graces we could before this extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy concluded on November 20,” says Sr. Theresa Lee, Vocations Director. “We remembered all of our friends and family in prayer, and ask that God’s mercy continue to flow in us and through us.” Pictured above are: (kneeling) Sr. Elfie Del Rosario, Sr. April Cabaccang, and Sr. Christina Chong; (standing, left-right) Sr. Lillian Foxx, Sr. April Hoffman, Sr. Brittany Harrison, Sr. Guerline Joseph, Sr. Janet Keller, Sr. Jen Kane, Sr. Katie Flanagan, Sr. Joo Yun Park, Sr. Lou Ann Fantauzza, Sr. Hae Jin Lim, and Sr. Myriam Meus. To learn more about the Salesian Sisters, contact Sr. Theresa Lee:, or visit

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Please Give Us This Day for Christmas!


he season of giving is upon us! What better gift than a day of prayer? Do you have a happy occasion you would like to share? The Salesian Sisters will celebrate with you. Is it a time to commemorate a less-than-happy occasion? Let the Sisters help. Have you someone to thank? All of us will help multiply this gratitude to that special person. So, then, please “Give Us This Day”!

At the St. Joseph Provincial Center in Haledon, NJ, Sr. Mary Bertha Paquin embraces Sr. Mary Palladino.

Any and every event or person or situation that merits special attention will be publicized on a bulletin board outside our chapel on your special day. All the Sisters, on that day, will pray for that person/event and for the person who requests prayer for the day. Our Lord has assured us, “Where two or three are gathered in My Name, I am among them.” What better assurance can we have? Let this exchange of prayer be an example of our concern and love for one another. God bless you during this holy Christmas Season!

Please give us this day/these days in 2016 or 2017 in honor of my special request(s):


ong before I entered the Salesian Sisters

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Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

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The Joy of Being a Salesian Educator

The Saving Work of Souls


ready for Heaven. The Sister whom she was assisting was sitting up in bed and shaking the siderails, saying, “She was here! She was here!” Upon being questioned as to whom she was talking about, she responded, “Our Lady! She told me that she was coming for me soon. She told me that I have to wait for a little bit longer. She was so beautiful!”

hen I first discovered St. John Bosco and St. Mary Mazzarello, I was charmed and inspired by their dedication to the service of the young. I could see myself as a participant in youth groups or classrooms. However, that all changed when, in 1985, after years of study to become an elementary school teacher, I was asked to complete some more courses to become a registered nurse. I was assigned to St. Joseph’s Provincial Center in Haledon, NJ. In this capacity I would be serving our elderly and infirm Sisters who had, indeed, spent many years actually serving young people! Whether I am taking vital signs; doing physical assessments and treatments; reviewing medications; making appointments; driving Sisters to their appointments; updating medical records; working with insurance and coordinating schedules of assignments; or supervising our helpers – it all contributes to the saving work of souls. Here we work as a team for holistic health care and preventive medicine. The developmental task of achieving positive adjustment to aging and adapting to diminished health are goals that come along with the aging process. Life review is an important part of healthy aging. Our Sisters love to reminisce. Stories from past experiences are welcomed and readily shared. Experiences especially revolving around the classroom or community life are enjoyed by all. I have had the joy and opportunity to observe our Sisters as they reminisced. Once, a recently-ordained Bishop was informed by the Sister sacristan that they were going to celebrate the Mass of St. Joseph the Worker. “Who is that?” he asked. Sister escorted him

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This has been the case for several of our infirm Sisters as they moved toward the light at the conclusion of their earthly journey. I have seen our aides and volunteers become close to the Sisters entrusted to their care. They celebrate their birthdays, assist them lovingly, and follow their funeral Masses, often with tears in their eyes.

At the St. Joseph Provincial Center, Sr. Virginia Dickey (standing, center) is joined by Sr. Louise Passero, Sr. Catherine Altamura, and Sr. Mary Palladino.

Being at the St. Joseph Provincial Center means living an adventure among consecrated educators. Every Sister continues her role as educator in the work that she does foremost by her example of loving fidelity. All is offered up for their salvation.

“Our phone rings often with requests for prayers. We are the vibrant and effective ‘Powerhouse of Prayer’ for those in need!”

Our phone rings often with requests for prayers. After all, we are the vibrant and effective “Powerhouse of Prayer” and intercession for those in need!

into the side parlor and explained, “You work. I work. He works!” He never forgot this. Many of the stories handed down are centered on Mary and her presence, guidance and protection. She remains for us the “Teacher without whom all wisdom is foolishness.” A Sister aide told of her experience of walking into the room of an elderly Sister who was rapidly declining and getting

Did I know or even suspect that there would be such joy in serving this segment of our “population”? Probably not to this degree, but as I finger my Rosary, laugh with those who are still among us, and close the eyes of the dying, I am grateful to the Lord and His Mother Mary for having called me to this mission. With joy in my heart I can say that I owe all to Mary Help of Christians. – Sr. Virginia Dickey, FMA

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Salesian Youth Report

In Tampa, Giving Thanks for Salesians! The evening’s honoree, Rick Fee, celebrates with Sr. Mary Rinaldi, Sr. Mary Jackson, Principal of Villa Madonna, Sr. Myriam Meus, Sr. Elfie DelRosario, Sr. Rosemary Cordes, and Sr. Mary Arciga. Below, Sr. Mary calls up Rick and his wife, Patrice, to receive the top award.


n Saturday, November 19, the 13th annual “Thanksgiving Basket” fundraiser for Villa Madonna School and the Salesian Youth Center/Boys & Girls Club was held in Tampa, FL. As you can see from these photos, it was a fun evening and a great success! And who better to honor on our 13th anniversary than the Salesian Youth Center Chairman for the past 13 years, Mr. Rick Fee? Rick is a true champion for his untiring commitment to the children of SYC and the Salesian Sisters. More than 400 people gathered for the magical evening, emceed by Villa alumna Adri Colina, with Sr. Mary Rinaldi hosting the drawing of more than 70 themed baskets. Mr. Richard Gonzmart of Columbia Restaurant provided the sit-down dinner, as he has done since our very first Thanksgiving Basket. This year’s dinner was a fabulous chicken with chorizo stuffing, overseen by talented Columbia Chef Gerry Bayona and Catering Manager Caroline O’Connor. The “Southern Dames” worked hard once again to make the evening a success. More than $125,000 was raised! Congratulations to Barbara Byars, who won the $500 Publix gift card, and Amy Jarman, who won the $500 Amazon gift card. There are so many people to thank for helping to make the Thanksgiving Basket a success year after year. Because everything is donated for the evening, all monies go directly to helping the Salesian Sisters help the children. Thanks to one and all! – Theresa G. Anderson

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Partners in Giving • Volume XXV • Issue 6

JoAnn Caracappa was so happy to win the Curious George Basket for her nephews. She had a great time with her friends, Anna Swiderski and AnaVictoria Campos. (Photos by Kathy Winter)

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

What a surprise it was for Sr. Mary that dear friends, Richard and Melanie Gonzmart, stopped by to say hi! Thank you Richard and Melanie for always providing the great meal to make the Thanksgiving Basket a success!

Having a great time at the party are Tanya and Rick Russo with their friends, Jerry and Lynn Zielinski and Patti and Rick Caldevilla.

Below, Anna Anderson adds her name to her basket tickets and hopes she wins!

Delicious lobster croquettes and black bean “caviar� are presented by dedicated Columbia Restaurant staff.

At left, Riley and Judy Hogan of Brandon, FL are happy to have won a basket full of candy! At right, Chris Schellman helps his son Alexander with his basket tickets.

At right, SYC Board Member Barbara Byars enjoys the evening with friends Catherine Yant and her mother, Annette Fly.

At left, Dick and Raymetta Stowers and Calvin and Sylvia Lyons traveled from Brandon, FL, for a great evening!

Salesian Youth Report MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS ACADEMY, NORTH HALEDON, NJ – With their typical generosity and enthusiasm, the students of Mary Help prepared 260 Christmas gifts for children in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Guatemala. As part of Cross Catholic’s “Boxes of Joy” holiday initiative, students (like sophomore Genai Veal, far right) received special shoeboxsized gift boxes to fill with gifts for a boy or girl, ages 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14. They were asked to mix practical gifts, such as school supplies, with fun gifts like small toys and candy. The cost of shipping each box is $9, so students also raised money from family and friends, as well as devoted half of their Intramural

THE AUXILIUM SCHOOL, NEWTON, NJ – Students and Sr. Isabel Garza enjoyed celebrating the feast of St. Francis of Assisi with Fr. Robert Griner, pastor of Christ Episcopal Church, who blessed all of their stuffed animals during the morning assembly.

Penny War profits to the campaign. Their gifts will be brought by Catholic missionaries

and given directly to needy children in order to bring them a little joy this Christmas season, an appropriate effort by the girls of the Academy whose motto is “Beauty, Truth, and Joy”. – Sr. Brittany Harrison, FMA

ST. THERESA SCHOOL, KENILWORTH, NJ – At the 45th annual Scholastic Olympics on October 26, St Theresa School was one of 12 schools that participated, with 16 children competing in subjects from Art to Spelling. Kiara Renteria won First Place for History, and Shawna Stevens won First Place for Current Events. In Religion, Abigail Donovan (above) won second place, as did Adam Grova in Mathematics. Sean Martin received third place in Art. Congratulations to all the students who participated!

Salesian Youth Report


he annual Salesian Youth Rally took place on October 21 at Mary Help of Christians Parish in Tampa, FL. The rally, with the theme “Bosco Boot Camp: Saints in Training,” gathers more than 500 children (grades 3-12) and staff together to celebrate and learn more about St. John Bosco and what it means to be Salesian. Students from Christ the King School, St. Joseph School, Villa Madonna School, and Cristo Rey High School came together for Mass, singing many Salesian songs, fellowship, and fun activities like a huge water slide. A fun day was had by all!

Visit us online!

CORPUS CHRISTI–HOLY ROSARY SCHOOL, PORT CHESTER, NY – Through the efforts of a hard-working Development team and the generosity of benefactors and friends, students now benefit from a newly-refurbished Science Lab and a new Blended Learning/STEM Room equipped with a 3D scanner and printer (much to the amazement and delight of fourth graders, above), robotic materials, engineering Legos, and much more. The new facilities were blessed by Deacon Bob Gontcharuk (right) during a special school ceremony on November 10.

Attending the blessing were (left-right): CCHRS Principal Deirdre McDermott; Debbie Carr; Dr. Noelle Beale, District Superintendent, Central Westchester Region; Sr Lise Parent, CCHRS President; and fourth graders Katie Smith and Romina Tarnovsky.

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


Salesian Youth Report

IMMACULATE CONCEPTION SCHOOL, MARRERO, LA – Immaculate Conception School was blessed to have Sr. Kelly Schuster with us on campus this fall. Sr. Kelly made her presence known by sharing her smile, joining students on the playground, and beautifying our campus! At right, Sr. Kelly and some ICS sixth graders planted annuals around the Marrero campus earlier this fall.

ST. JOHN NEUMANN CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL, NAPLES, FL – Thomas Balboni, class of 2019, shakes hands with Clark Minker, a representative from Alabama University, during the St. John Neumann’s annual College Fair. Students had the opportunity to meet with representatives from over 40 colleges and learning institutions from around the country (that’s Sr. Katie Flanagan directing traffic in the background). From the very first day of freshman year at St. John Neumann, students are focused on college. The school implemented a one-on-one advisory program, in which every student meets with a mentor each quarter to determine collegiate preparedness and achieve their goals.

VILLA MADONNA SCHOOL, TAMPA, FL – The annual Villa Madonna Halloween carnival is run by the eighth grade students as a fundraiser. Students, teachers, and even the Principal came decked out in colorful costumes, and everyone had a wonderful time! The next day, Fr. George Corrigan, OFM, from Sacred Heart Parish in Tampa spoke to students about the importance of leading a saintly life.



e are pleased to renew our adoption of Sr. Catherine Altamura. This is a wonderful program. It is a circle of giving and receiving. As we are praying for the Sisters, we know that they are praying for us in return. Ed Legutko and Harry Kropp State College, PA


really miss my letters from and to Sr. Claire Perino! She was very special to us! Jill and Pedro Esquivel Rockford, IL


e love hearing from our Adopters! Please consider joining our friends of all

At the Mary Help Gala, Sr. Domenica Di Peri was thrilled to meet her faithful Adopters of 18 years, Michel and Josephine Russo of Danbury, CT, for the first time!


faiths who have experienced the transforming power of prayer and loving friendship with a Salesian Sister, every day of the year, through our Adopt a Sister Program. Whether the Adopted Sister is for yourself, a family member, or a friend in need of spiritual strength, you will find comfort knowing that your intentions will be remembered each day by your spiritual prayer partner. And it makes the PERFECT Christmas gift! Please complete the form below, or visit us online at, or call us toll-free: (877) OUR-NUNS. The Salesian Sisters thank you in this, the program’s 25th anniversary year.

CVV: _____________

Visit us online!

Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016 •


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

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage P A I D Hanover, NH Permit No. 8


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: Facebook: salesiansistersdevelopment Editorial Board Dr. Joseph McAleer, Editor Sr. Mary Rinaldi, FMA, Director of Development Elsie DeJesus, Production Manager Sr. Mary Terzo, FMA, Editorial Assistant Federal Tax ID # 22-6043753 © 2016 Missionary Society of Salesian Sisters, Inc. 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. Partners in Giving welcomes letters, articles, and photos from contributors. We reserve the right to edit for publication.

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Partners in Giving • Christmas 2016


rinity Velazquez, a senior at the Academy of Our Lady in Marrero, LA, was thrilled to have her grandmother, Leora Oubre, visit her on campus during the Academy’s annual Grandparents Day on November 1. In celebration of All Saints Day, grandparents were invited to campus for Mass with their granddaughters, with coffee and donuts for everyone afterwards.

Partners in Giving Christmas 2016  

Christmas 2016 issue of Partners in Giving Magazine, the bimonthly publication of the Salesian Sisters Eastern Province

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