50th anniversary year closes with gratitude

ORLANDO | As the Diocese of Orlando’s 50th anniversary jubilee year comes to a close, parishes throughout the diocese joined in midday prayer at the Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Queen of the Universe Nov. 4 to reflect upon the Year of the Eucharist and give thanks for God’s gracious gifts. Commemorating the occasion, Bishop John Noonan celebrated God’s blessings by distributing the diocesan honor, the Mary, Mother of God Medal, and Papal honors approved by Pope Francis.

In his homily, the bishop spoke of the Ponce de Leon’s sighting of “La Florida” or the flower in 1513, and noted, “For 500 years, Christianity has blossomed, not only here in Florida, but all over the United States. Today, we come to celebrate the flowers that continue to blossom and bloom in our midst. We are young, yet vibrant, new yet growing in faith.”

The vast, marble sanctuary overflowed with music and applause as awards were conferred to 139 diocesan lay men and women, clergy and religious, who received the Mary, Mother of God Diocesan Medal established in 2008.

The Chaplain to His Holiness, bestowed in recognition of a priest’s many years of distinguished service, honored Father John Bluett of St. Stephen Parish in Winter Springs and Father Patrick Sheedy of Blessed Trinity Parish in Ocala, with the title of Monsignor.

The Pro Ecclesia Et Pontifice, one of the highest honors the Holy Father can confer on any member of the Church was received by 27 of the diocese’s faithful. Following was the Benemerenti Honor, instituted by Pope Leo XIII, recognizing men and women who contributed to the fulfillment of the Church’s mission and betterment of society.

Founded by Pope Gregory XVI in 1831, the Knight of St. Gregory the Great Award was bestowed upon Allan Keen, James Laria and Mel Martinez for outstanding contributions to the Church and community. The Dame of St. Gregory the Great was awarded to Kathryn Martinez.

“The Church and the Diocese of Orlando has been built and has blossomed on the love of Christ,” said Bishop Noonan. “Pope Francis said it best when he said, ‘Love is shown by little things. By the attention to small daily signs which make us feel at home. Faith grows best when it is lived and shaped by love. That is why our homes and families are true domestic churches.’ Church in the Diocese of Orlando is built on families and communities of faith,” he noted. “For the past 50 years they have been the foundation stones for our diocese. They too have blossomed and flowered.”

He acknowledged the love, labor and personal sacrifice of many who “have prepared a future for the next generations so they too can learn to know and love the Lord.”

Calling to mind the closing of the 50th jubilee year of the diocese, he concluded, “May we continue to blossom and let the power of the Gospel be in the lives of our people and let the flower of our faith continue to grow and give strength to future generations.”

By Glenda Meekins of the Florida Catholic – November 5, 2018

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Diocesan and Papal Awards

Chaplain of His Holiness

This honor is bestowed in recognition of a priest’s many years of distinguished service to the Church. Only those priests who have reached the age of 65 and are considered worthy by their diocesan bishop are eligible for this honor, with the title of Monsignor.

Pro Ecclesia et Pontinfice

This is one of the highest honors the Holy Father can confer on any member of the Church. It is a wonderful recognition, directly from the pope, of sustained and outstanding service to the Catholic faith.

Benemerenti Honor

The award was instituted by Pope Leo XIII and is bestowed upon men and women who have contributed to the fulfillment of the Church’s mission and the betterment of society.

Knight or Dame of St. Gregory the Great Award

The award was founded by Pope Gregory XVI in 1831 and is bestowed upon Catholic lay men and women who have made outstanding contributions to the Church and community.

Mary, Mother of God Diocesan Medal

Established in 2008, this award is bestowed upon local Catholics who display extraordinary leadership and service, especially in the areas of enkindling a deeper faith, forming leaders in Christ and harmonizing ministries to the mission of the Church.

 

Diocesan Honorees

MARY, MOTHER OF GOD MEDAL:
Harmonizing ministries to the mission of the Church.

Mr. Henry “Chip” Allen
Mr. Tim Ball
Mrs. Toni Ball
Mrs. Anita Behler
Mr. Tim Behler
Mr. Robert Berardi
Ms. Peggy Blickenstaff
Father Clyde Bonar
Mr. Kevin Bowler
Ms. Anita Brady
Mrs. Sue Brown
Mr. Mike Brown
Mrs. Bach-Dang Thi Bui
Mrs. Tuyet-Mai Uong Bui
Mr. Joe Castille
Mrs. Zel Castille
Mrs. Van Tuong Cat
Mr. Roland Cayer
Mrs. Annette Cayer
Mr. Bac Quang Chu
Mr. Dominic Dien Quang Chu
Mrs. Thoai Thi Chu
Ms. Shelly Cintron
Mr. Vince Colonna
Mr. Pete Connelly
Father Sean Cooney
Mr. James Cooney
Deacon Nuoc Van Dang
Mrs. Hue Vuong Dang
Mr. Hien Duc Dinh
Mr. Thu Van Dinh
Mr. Anh Hung Do
Mrs. Nhan Thi Do
Mr. Toan Huu Doan
Mr. Al  Dotson
Mrs. Lily Phuong Duong
Ms. Diana Friends
Father Robert Fucheck
Mr. Walter Gardner (posthumously)
Deacon Joe Gassman
Father Michael Giglio
Mrs. Mary Ann Gilbert
Father William Gohring
Mrs. Martha Gravois
Deacon David Gray
Father William Hanley
Father Sean Heslin
Dr. Frank Hildner
Mrs. Hanh Kieu Hoang
Mrs. Loan Ho Hoang
Mr. Minh Ngoc Hoang
Mrs. Hoa Thi Hua
Ms. Maureen Kane
Mr. Troy King
Mrs. Christy King
Mr. Roger Kozlowski
Mrs. Lee Kozlowski
Mr. Jim Krakowski
Father Robert Kurber
Father Timothy LaBo
Mr. Hien Van Le
Mr. Joseph Long Tien Le
Mr. Kia Le
Ms. Rafaela López
Mrs. Phuc Hoang Ly
Sister Bernadette Mackay
Father Donald Mainardi
Mr. Reinardo Malavé
Ms. Emmabel García de Malavé
Ms. Phyllis Mann
Ms. Mary Matheus
Father Thomas McMackin
Ms. Donna Mercado
Father Peter Mitchell
Deacon Fred Molina
Father John “Stan” Murray
Mrs. Nhung Dinh Ngo
Mr. Thanh Dinh Ngo
Mr. Anthony Tuan Anh Nguyen
Mr. Bau Vu Nguyen
Mrs. Chau Thi Nguyen
Mr. Chien Van Nguyen
Mr. Dominic Bac Van Nguyen
Mr. De Gia Nguyen
Mr. Hieu The Nguyen
Mrs. Huynh Hoa Nguyen
Mrs. Huy My Nguye
Mr. Joseph Tuan The Nguyen
Mr. Lan Tran Nguyen
Mr. Ninh Viet Nguyen
Mr. Phi Hoang Nguyen
Mr. Quoc-Bao Trieu Nguyen
Mr. Sang Ngoc Nguyen
Mr. Son Van Nguyen
Mr. Thong Vu Nguyen
Mrs. Thu Thi Nguyen
Ms. Cara O’Keefe
Father Raymond O’Leary
Mr. John Olivari
Mr. Patrick O’Malley
Mr. Ed Pauley
Ms. Cathy Petroff
Mr. Dung Duc Pham
Mr. Kevin Pham
Mr. Tung Van Pham
Ms. Angela Raymond-Jones
Mr. Victor Rivera
Father Joseph Roberts
Father Tito Rojas
Ms. Dorothy “Dotty” Rua
Deacon John Rumplasch
Father Peter Sagorski
Mr. Emmett Sapp
Ms. Marissla Silva
Mr. Dave Smith
Mr. Bob Svoboda
Mr. Sterling Tilley
Ms. Emily Tilley
Mr. Phong-Huy Nguyen Tran
Mr. Martin Minh Cong Tran
Dr. Truc Chinh Tran
Mr. Vuong Tien Tran
Mr. Hai Huu Truong
Mr. Hieu Huu Truong
Mr. Nuoi Dinh Truong
Mr. Trace Trylco
Mr. Jim Valentine
Mr. Steve Valentine
Dr. Carlos Vélez-Munich
Mrs. Marisel Vélez
Deacon Paul Volkerson
Mr. Kim-Cuc Vu
Mr. Khanh Van Vu
Mr. Ken Yontz
Father Frank Zammitt

Papal Honorees

CHAPLAIN OF HIS HOLINESS
Father John Bluett
Father Patrick Sheedy

PRO ECCLESIA ET PONTIFICE
Father Paul Henry
Father Peter Henry
Father Richard Walsh
Sister Joseph Barden, R.S.M.
Sister Immaculata Knox, R.S.M.
Sister Tuyet-Mo Marie Nguyen, I.C.M.
Sister Dorothy Sayers, M.P.F.
Sister Elizabeth Marie Stoup, S.S.J.
Sister Virgina West, S. N.D.de.N.
Mr. Thomas Aglio
Mr. Cesar Calvet
Mr. James Croson
Mr. Kenneth Firling
Mr. Fred Haddad
Mrs. Nancy Hagerty
Dr. Paul Hagerty
Mr. Ronald Koetter
Mr. Richard Logue
Ms. Alice McMahon
Mr. Joseph Nha Vu Nguyen
Ms. Mary Ellen Pollock
Mrs. Mary Jane Sevick
Mr. Kevin Shaughnessy
Mrs. Linda Shaughnessy
Mr. Peter Stauder
Mrs. Mary Webb
Mr. John Wettach (posthumously)

BENEMERENTI HONOR
Ms. Joan Faulkner
Mr. Dan Gilardi
Ms. Andrea Krazeise
Ms. Angie Romagosa

KNIGHT OF GREGORY THE GREAT
Mr. Allan Keen
Mr. James Laria
Mr. Mel Martínez

DAME OF ST. GREGORY THE GREAT
Mrs. Kathryn Martínez

Papal Honor Bios

Priests

Father John Bluett came to Florida as a missionary from Ireland when just one diocese covered the entire state, the Diocese of St. Augustine. He is one of eight children, and of the 6 boys, he is one of five who were ordained as priests. His first assignment after Ordination in 1963 was as parochial vicar at St. Charles Catholic Church and teacher/coach at Bishop Moore Catholic High School. As the Diocese of Orlando was established, he offered his leadership to many committees of the diocese. He served as Vice-Chancellor for the Diocese of Orlando at its establishment, and later as Chancellor, as well as chaplain for Mercy Hospital. He served as pastor of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church, and has served as pastor of St. Stephen Catholic Church since 1985. He also led the Office of Family Life for many years. He was one of the first priests to advocate for sponsoring the Vietnamese refugee families into the Diocese of Orlando in 1975. Father Bluett’s heart for the peripheries is seen through the parish ministry in Pathways to Care, an assisted-living facility for homeless and veterans with injuries and the adoption of a parish in Haiti.

Father Paul Henry and his twin brother, Peter, journeyed together in their formation of priesthood in Ireland and were ordained in 1968. Father Paul Henry celebrates his 50th year of priesthood as the Diocese of Orlando celebrates its 50th anniversary. Father Henry is one of the first priests to serve in the Diocese of Orlando. His first assignment after Ordination was as parochial vicar at Our Lady of Lourdes, Daytona Beach in August 1968. He has served in many diocesan leadership roles, including chair of Bishop Moore Catholic High School board of directors, member of the Priests’ Personnel Board, Presbyteral Council and College of Consultors. He also leads the recently renewed Parish Formation Committee. He has served as pastor of St. John Vianney and St. Mary Magdalen Catholic churches and principal of Melbourne Central Catholic High School. As Rector, he currently serves the spiritual needs of pilgrims who traverse the region at the Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Queen of the Universe.

Father Peter Henry and his twin brother, Paul, journeyed together in their formation of priesthood in Ireland and were ordained in 1968. Father Peter Henry celebrates his 50th year of priesthood as the Diocese of Orlando celebrates its 50th anniversary. Father Henry is one of the first priests to serve in the Diocese of Orlando. His first assignment after Ordination was as parochial vicar at St. Charles Borromeo, at that time the Cathedral of the Diocese of Orlando. After serving in the Diocese of Orlando at three parishes, he was named pastor of John XXIII Parish in Geneva, Switzerland in 1988 for the English-speaking community and offered assistance to the Permanent Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations. He returned to the Diocese of Orlando to serve as pastor of St. Ann Catholic Church in DeBary in 2007.

Father Patrick Sheedy is one of the pioneers of the Diocese of Orlando, having arrived in the Diocese of St. Augustine after his Ordination in Ireland in 1965. He has served as pastor of Blessed Trinity Parish in Ocala since 1988, the largest parish with a school in the Northern Deanery and one of the largest parishes in the Diocese of Orlando. Because of his passion for Catholic education, he was the founder of Trinity Catholic High School, offering students the opportunity to continue or consider Catholic education during their high school years. He has instituted many outreach opportunities for those in need, including expanding Catholic Charities of Central Florida with multiple health clinics and creating mission churches, with the blessing of his bishop to serve migrant workers. He established many missions in Africa and petitioned the bishop to invite religious sisters from the Congregation of Immaculate Heart of Mary Reparatrix to serve in the Diocese of Orlando for the benefit of Blessed Trinity Catholic Church.

Father Richard Walsh celebrates his 50th year of priesthood as the Diocese of Orlando celebrates its 50th anniversary. Father Walsh is one of the first priests to serve in the Diocese of Orlando, arriving from Ireland after his Ordination in 1968. He has served as pastor of the Church of Our Saviour and St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church. He is actively involved in St. Margaret Mary’s mission to the people in Haiti.  He is an advocate and supporter of the efforts of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur to the farmworkers, and to those who are blessed with special.

Consecrated Life

Sister Joseph Barden, R.S.M. is a beloved principal in the Diocese of Orlando, having arrived to serve in Florida from Ireland in 1971. She enjoys working with teachers, students, and parents to build up a school community of faith, while remembering to reach out to the poor and less fortunate. Sister Barden implemented a volunteer program in which parents donate time during school hours to assist teachers. She also ushered in access to the internet with the help of a technology committee, made up of parents and parishioners. During her tenure at Ascension, catholic school students participated in a fund-raising program for work in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, as well as outreach to the homeless. Sister never fails to find a reason to speak about religious vocations to young people. Her mantra is to “be joyful” and to show students that religious sisters are not different, just everyday people answering a calling from God. Though retired, Sister continues to serve the people of Ascension parish in a variety of ministries.

Sister Immaculata Knox, R.S.M. arrived in Florida in 1961 from Ireland, one of the pioneering sisters to serve here. She came to the East, or “Space” Coast of Florida where the population was booming due to development of the U.S. space program and the need for clergy and religious was great. She helped to found Ascension Catholic School in Melbourne and has taught and served generations of children and families. Sister Knox is known for her spirit of God which is effervescent, no matter the occasion or encounter. Whether teaching, chairing education meetings, serving on the Diocesan Board of Education or the Sisters Council, she has brought charm, humor, and great love of Christ. In a county where just 15% of the population is Catholic, Sr. Immaculata was selected in 2010 as Brevard County Woman of the Year in Education. She was the first religious to be selected for this award. She was appointed a member of the first Diocesan School Board and is a founding member of the Diocesan Sisters’ Council on which she continues to serve. Since her retirement from teaching in 2006, Sister has continued to fill her days through visits to the sick and needy and to the incarcerated. “We don’t retire,” Sister has said. “We’re just recycled.”

Sister Tuyet-Mo Marie Nguyen, I.C.M. fled Vietnam with her parents and three sisters following the fall of Saigon in 1975. They were refugees living in New Orleans, Louisiana and did not speak English. Her vocation was nurtured after she went to live in a convent and at age 18 she formally entered the Incarnatio-Consecratio-Missio order. Sister has served as a catechist, Director of Religious Education and Director of Faith Formation at St. Philip Phan Van Minh Catholic Church in Orlando since 1989. There, she has imbued children and families with a love and joy of their Catholic faith. She has been an example for living life in true happiness serving God and others. Sister has also taught math, social studies and the Vietnamese language at a local public school for many years, always with a smile on her face and the light of Christ in her heart. Sister is an advocate for religious vocations. She also participates on the local Sisters Council, She is a servant leader among the other Sisters in her religious order serving in the Diocese, leading with a gentle yet firm hand of guidance.

Sister Dorothy Sayers, M.P.F. grew up in England and heard the call of the Lord early in life at the age of 11, and began participating in the celebration of daily Mass. Even while among friends enjoying fun and games she consistently heard a voice in her heart saying, “Can you give Me everything?” At the age of 15 she entered the convent and began formation. After final vows, she was asked to move to the United States and she taught in a variety of Catholic schools. In 1995 she arrived in Florida to become the first principal of Holy Family Catholic School, and she has grown the student population to one of the largest in the Diocese of Orlando. Under her leadership, Holy Family Catholic School continues to expand its community and mission outreach efforts, meeting people in the peripheries. Students are involved with support activities for children in underdeveloped countries. It is more than the students who are affected by her infectious gift of spreading the Good News; it is the faculty, staff, and families who also bring forth the Spirit of the Lord within Central Florida. Around the school and parish she is known for her love, caring and humility.

Sister Elizabeth Marie Stoup, S.S.J. is a sister of St. Joseph of St. Augustine. She served as principal of Morning Star School in Orlando since the early 1960’s, retiring from that position in September of 2002. Morning Star School serves children with developmental challenges. While an organization of the Diocese of Orlando, the students of the school are diverse, in ethnicity, religious and socio-economic backgrounds. This diversity perhaps speaks volumes about the woman who has prayerfully and lovingly led these young people for more than forty years. Sister is the visionary behind Bishop Grady Villas, a community for adults with special needs. She heard parents’ concern about who would care for their children when they no longer could. Sister patiently formed an idea and gently tapped the people who would make this dream a reality. Bishop Grady Villas is a beacon of light for the more than 300 adults with special needs. The wait list for services is more than 200. The organization is so successful that it is endorsed by the State of Florida because of the care it shows these blessed individuals. Sister Elizabeth Marie Stoup is a humble, unassuming person, praising God for her ability to help these holy people. Though retired, Sister continues to minister to adults with disabilities.

Sr. Virginia West, S.N.D.de.N. is a sister of Notre Dame de Namur and recently celebrated her 60th jubilee. She arrived in the Diocese of Orlando after many years of service up North, and began ministering to separated, divorced and widowed Catholics through the Family Life Office. Later, serving as an annulment advocate, Sister West brought healing to countless men and women throughout Central Florida as they dealt with the painful experiences of a broken relationship. Sister also counseled hurting youth and created the Rainbows program for children dealing with grief after divorce or the death of a loved one. She is very involved with a Haitian ministry sponsored by St. Margaret Mary Parish and travels frequently to minister to the people in need. Truly, Sister West lives the words of the foundress of her order: “Qu’il est bon le Bon Dieu/How Good is the Good God.”

Laity

Thomas Aglio first arrived in the Diocese of St. Augustine to operate the program that helped Cuban refugees find a home in the United States. The young people became so enamored with Aglio that they named him, Padré Segundo (Second Father). In 1962, Aglio created Catholic Social Services in Central Florida, before the Diocese of Orlando was established. He cultivated, with the grace of God, the largest private, non-profit social service agency in the area, from a one-person office in Orlando into an organization that served nine counties. Aglio’s faith and commitment have consistently been shown in outreach to the marginalized. He has clothed the poor; ministered to prisoners; quenched the thirst of those who have no voice; and comforted the sick through medical clinics and counseling. Aglio was also appointed Secretary of the Social Development Secretariat under Bishop Thomas Grady. In that capacity, he was responsible for managing staff in charge of various other outreach ministries such as Black Community Ministry, Farmworker Ministry, Haitian Community Ministry, Hispanic Ministry, Mission Office, Prison and Jail Ministry, Refugee and Immigration Services, and Respect Life Office. He is a member of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church.

Cesar Calvet arrived in the United States in June of 1961 as a part of the Pedro Pan Program for Young Cuban refugees. As an active member of St. James Cathedral, he serves with a spirit of humility. Calvet has served on the St. James Cathedral Finance Council for twenty years. He was named Chair of the Diocesan Finance Council in February 2018. He is also a member of the Diocesan Debt Reduction Committee and the Diocesan Finance Council Liaison to The Catholic Foundation of Central Florida. He serves on the board of Bishop Moore Catholic High School, and continues to be an active alumnus. Calvet also serves as a commissioner on the Orlando Utilities Commission Board, the Board of the American Heart Association of Metro Orlando, Member of The Hispanic Leadership Commission and the Advisory Board of the Ana G. Mendez University (a sixty-year-old Puerto Rican University with three campuses in Florida).

James Croson contributes his time and talent both locally and abroad. His generosity and service has reached not only the local church, but Franciscan Missions in Paraguay where he provided funds to build a sports center for impoverished children and families. He generously gives of his business expertise as a board member of the Catholic Foundation of Central Florida.  He has served on a number of committees at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Mt. Dora, his home parish.

Joan Faulkner is the President/CEO of HOPE Helps. The mission of the non-profit HOPE Helps, Inc. is to prevent and reduce homelessness in Central Florida by equipping individuals and families to become self-sufficient through Housing, Outreach, Prevention, and Education. Faulkner was one of the original volunteers. Her efforts have built up the organization into an Oviedo institution. Since its grassroots beginning in 2006, the team at HOPE Helps has built a resource center, food pantry, and thrift store. They also host back-to-school events to make sure children in need have backpacks and other school supplies. They also organize “Christmas in the City” each December to make sure all families have food, photos and gifts. Most importantly, Faulkner has brought dignity to thousands of families. Most Precious Blood Parish supports HOPE Helps with volunteers, meeting space, food drives, and funding.

Kenneth Firling has been a St. Margaret Mary parishioner for more than twelve years and has initiated the successful Haiti Outreach Ministry. He has a single-minded devotion to the people of Haiti and their tremendous needs. Because of his strong belief in relationship building and our baptismal commitment to the mission of Christ, he has worked tirelessly to involve countless parishioners in this endeavor. As a result, many parishioners have taken mission trips to Haiti to partner with the people and develop programs to meet their needs. Firling has also been successful in getting other parishes in the Diocese of Orlando and beyond to partner with parishes in Haiti. He and his wife are now personally mentoring a young Haitian man who lives with them while getting an education at the University of Central Florida.

Daniel Gilardi is part owner of a food company that is also a major employer in Sanford, Florida. Twenty years ago he helped form The Father’s Table Foundation with a commitment to give 50% of the profits to charity. Dan Gilardi is president of the foundation and oversees the distribution of the funds. They have given money to help the homeless, to fight abortion, and they have also donated a large amount to Catholic projects in the Dominican Republic, Peru, Kenya, Uganda and more. In the last three years, they have generously given more than $200,000 to build a school for girls in the Diocese of Mahenge, Tanzania.

Fred Haddad was instrumental in the transformational growth of the Diocese of Orlando’s Office of Finance. From 2000 to 2016, Haddad served on the Diocesan Finance Committee, in addition to serving as Committee Chair from 2012 to 2016. He served in this financial advisory capacity to three bishops, while also leading and participating in various finance subcommittees, as well as the Diocesan Cemetery Board of Directors. During Haddad’s tenure on the Diocesan Finance Committee, he advised and guided the bishop and Office of Finance toward improved processes, financial stability and operational excellence. Haddad’s business experience was relied upon as the diocese issued, and ultimately refinanced, more than $100 million of tax exempt bonds to help fund the expansion of parishes, schools and other ministries. In addition, Haddad’s leadership included successfully advising the bishop through a $150 million capital campaign, the largest capital campaign in the history of the diocese, and one that achieved success despite a challenging economic environment in the late 2000s. He is a member of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church.

Nancy Hagerty (Stefanovic) and her husband, Paul, are founding members of Most Precious Blood Parish in Oviedo, Florida, established in 2005. She was part of the Parish Liturgy Commission and Parish Development Committee and participated in the 2006 Synod for the Diocese of Orlando. Mrs. Hagerty has also worked as school guidance counselor and helped pregnant students and drop-out risks at Crooms High School in Sanford, Florida. She retired from Winter Springs High School.

Dr. Paul Hagerty is a founding member of Most Precious Blood Parish in Oviedo, Florida, established in 2005. Paul was the first chairperson of the Parish Council of Most Precious Blood Catholic Church in Oviedo. He has also served on the Regional School Planning Committee for the Diocese of Orlando. Dr. Hagerty served as school superintendent for eleven years in Seminole County and was named School Superintendent of the Year in Florida. Hagerty High School in Oviedo is named in honor of his exemplary service.

Allan Keen is a successful businessman and has given of his time and wealth for the benefit of God’s Kingdom. He is a founding member and past chair of the Catholic Foundation of Central Florida; he chairs the Diocesan Real Estate Committee; serves as a member of the Diocesan Debt Reduction Committee; and is helped to rebuild a church destroyed by a hurricane in Haiti. He is a graceful mediator in conflicts and seeks to serve God as best as he is able. The loss of his brother in recent years made its mark upon Keen by strengthening his faith. The recent losses of his dear partner and a business associate also provide him with reflection on the gifts of God and how he brings forth these gifts for the flourishment of God’s holy Kingdom.

Ronald Koetter is an accountant, and has served faithfully on the Finance Council of Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Mims, including as its Chairman. He served as a member of the Diocesan Finance Council for more than ten years and agreed to serve as a temporary president (which became a two-year agreement) until his recent retirement from the Diocesan Finance Council. He has assisted on search committees for the employment of bookkeepers and business managers in parishes throughout the diocese. He offered his talents to review the financial equation for parish assessment for the ministries served by Our Catholic Appeal. Koetter understands the mission of the church and wherever he has lived, has offered his faithfulness as he served on community boards.

Andrea Krazeise is the founder and director of The Pregnancy Center of Sanford & Oviedo. She credits the late Father Dr. Albert J. Fornace as her “Apostle Paul.” His gift paid for the first home of the Sanford Pregnancy Center. The centers serve 125-150 women each month with love that empowers life-affirming decisions. The work of The Pregnancy Center is respected and supported by the local community and dozens of churches. Over the years, the Center has served as a model for similar organizations throughout Florida. She is a witness through her way of life to the Church’s mission and betterment of society.

James Laria has demonstrated care and concern for families, particularly children, through his service as the pro-life coordinator for both the 3rd and 4th degrees of the Knights of Columbus. His commitment to life, to the church, and to the Lord, is entirely evident in his attitude and behavior. Laria has been chair of the parish finance committee of Blessed Sacrament, Clermont as well as a member of the parish council. He has served as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion and as a minister to the sick. He was also a founding member of the parish’s prison ministry program and continues in that role today at both a parish and diocesan level.

Richard Logue created the initial Refugee Resettlement Program at Catholic Charities of Central Florida in 1975 as a service ministry to refugees arriving from Vietnam. In the forty-one years that he served Catholic Charities of Central Florida, he built one of Florida’s largest refugee and immigrant programs. He personally touched the lives of thousands of individuals new to the United States, many of whom came from exceedingly difficult situations. Many of these individuals have remained in touch with him and with Catholic Charities of Central Florida. Logue retired in 2016. He truly emulates love for neighbor in the most basic sense. He is a member of Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church.

Kathryn (Kitty) Martinez is a longtime parishioner of St. James Cathedral. She has led bible study and served as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion for many years. Martinez and her husband, Mel, mentor and prepare couples for the Sacrament of Marriage. Martinez is also a community activist with special interest in issues that affect children and their development. In 1995, Martinez started the program WEEKENDS at a high school in Orlando. WEEKENDS is a proactive drug, violence, and alcohol-prevention program that builds leadership and decision-making skills, and is focused on keeping youth involved in positive weekend activities. She also assisted in the formation of Una Fides, an association of the faithful, developed to assist in the adult formation for women.

Mel Martinez is a longtime parishioner of St. James Cathedral. He participates in the celebration of Mass with his wife, Kitty, weekly and together they mentor and prepare couples for the Sacrament of Marriage. Martinez has served the community as an elected official. He served as Orange County Mayor from 1998-2000 and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2005, serving faithfully until 2009. He acquired seats on the committees on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs; Energy and Natural Resources; and Foreign Relations. He also served on the Select Committee on Aging, and later secured seats on the Armed Services Committee and the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee.

Alice McMahon has been involved in numerous ministries at Saint Margaret Mary Parish, all of them involve outreach to the marginalized. She treats those in need with the utmost dignity and respect always. Those whom she serves know she is their friend. She is humble, gentle, kind and quiet about what she does, never drawing attention to herself. She has always cared for others, beginning with her own parents for whom she cared until their deaths. Christ said, “By their fruits you shall know them,” and Alice’s fruit basket is overflowing.

Joseph Nha Vu Nguyen escaped North Vietnam during political turmoil in 1954 and immigrated as a refugee to Orlando in 1975. In 1980, he graduated with a Bachelors of Engineering Technology from the University of Central Florida. He is a devout Catholic and participates in the celebration of daily Mass. He contributed his time, talents and treasure to building up the church community of St. Philip Phan Van Minh. He has deep concern for the poor and has been coordinator for the church’s social outreach for many years. He was a member of the Pastoral Council and twice its president. Although retired, he continues to visit the sick and is a leader in the bereavement team.

Mary Ellen Pollock has been a catechist, sponsor, and a director of the essential Rite of Christian Initiation and ministry at Blessed Sacrament Church in Clermont. She has involved at the diocesan level with the Diocesan Catechumenate Committee, the Diocesan Rite of Election, and the formation of catechumenate teams. Pollock has also served as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion and lector for many decades.

Angela Romagosa, a parishioner of Nativity Catholic Church, created and directed The Christian Sharing Center of Longwood for more than thirty years. From humble beginnings, the Center is now the principal resource for the homeless in Seminole County, and was awarded outstanding charity at both the local and national level. Since 1986, The Christian Sharing Center has focused on preventing hunger and homelessness for families and individuals in crisis. Services are provided without discrimination.

Mary Jane Sevick came to Orlando from Atlanta with her family in 1964 and has been an active member of the St. James Catholic community ever since. Sevick has a genuine relationship and connection with those wishing to enter the Catholic faith and journeys with them through the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) process. She has worked countless years with the youth preparing for their Sacraments – First Reconciliation, Holy Eucharist and Confirmation. Sevick now lives in a retirement community and continues to be a leader as she gathers the community in prayer, leads them in the rosary and brings forth Real Presence to all she meets.

Kevin Shaughnessy is a member of St. James Cathedral and active in various parish ministries. He has served as president of the St. James Cathedral School Board as well as the Bishop Moore Catholic High School Board. Shaughnessy has also been involved with Bishop Grady Villas, a diocesan residential community for adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities, since its inception in 2000. Shaughnessy has served on the Board of Directors, participated in major fundraising efforts and volunteered at the residences. Shaughnessy is the leader of the local Catholic Lawyers Guild of Central Florida and has served as its president. He is a supporter of and participant in the annual Red Mass celebrated in the diocese since 1986. He has long advocated for the dignity of those on the peripheries of society.

Linda Shaughnessy is a longtime parishioner of St. James Cathedral and has a long and sustained history of commitment to serving others in the Orlando community, in particular those who have special needs. Whether it is organizing fundraisers, chairing meetings or sponsoring events, she commits her time, talent and treasure to support the needs of others. Shaughnessy is an advocate for the right to life of all God’s children in every stage of life. Among her many involvements, she has devoted tremendous time and energy serving the needs of the residents at Bishop Grady Villas, a diocesan residential community for adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Her leadership has been instrumental in motivating and encouraging others in the central Florida community to support Bishop Grady Villas. Shaughnessy has been honored by Bishop Grady Villas with the Lifetime Legacy Award and has been a Legacy Honoree at Bishop Moore High School for her many years of service.

Peter Stauder has been a member of Blessed Sacrament, Clermont parish for more than seventeen years. He has served on both the parish council and the parish finance committee for more than twelve years. He is a founding board member of the parish’s Outward Sign Ministry, which provides for the poor, hungry, homeless and those with special needs. His is also an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, a faith formation catechist, and minister to the sick. Stauder has held countless offices in the Knights of Columbus, exercising leadership by example, reminding his peers they are to be good Catholic gentlemen.

Mary Webb has been a parishioner of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Melbourne since July 1975.  During these last forty-two years, she has worked tirelessly in many ministries. She served as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, Sacristan, member of the Art & Environment Committee, serves as Minister of Hospitality and more. Webb has a great love of priests, brothers and sisters who have committed themselves to full-time ministry in the Lord’s name. She has served, not only at Our Lady of Lourdes, but also Ascension and Holy Name of Jesus Parishes in the care of priests for many years.

John Wettach was the builder of the financial office of the Diocese of Orlando. From 1985 to his retirement in 2000, he tirelessly helped create the structures by which the Diocese of Orlando managed its temporal goods for the flourishment of the Kingdom of God. Wettach’s solid approach to financial matters of the diocese allowed for its financial stability and growth as Central Florida also grew. Further, he was regarded as an individual who consistently aimed for fairness and justice in business operations even during uneasy or difficult circumstances. Wettach was also an enormous supporter of religious sisters and encouraged all diocesan staff to live out their faith in their work and to thrive through greater education. He was va great believer in recognizing and acknowledging individual achievements and milestones. Wettach was a long-time parishioner and volunteer of St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church in Winter Park. He was born into eternal life on April 25, 2018.