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St. Scholastica Parish

7800 Janes Avenue

Woodridge, IL 60517

Text Box: Pastoral Staff

Reverend Norbert Raszeja, CR, Pastor

The Friday before Palm Sunday 2012 was March 30.  For me this day is  memorable since it is the first day I spent at the rectory of St. Scholastica Parish in Woodridge, IL.  The succeeding days brought many new names and faces into my life and about 700 people bewildered as to how to pronounce my last name [Raszeja = RHA’-shay- ya]. However, all of these people were friendly and welcoming.  This might be a good place to tell you something about the new face that entered your lives.

I am a native Chicagoan who was born in “Bucktown” which is a unique geographical area on the northwest side of Chicago.  My home parish is St. Hedwig Parish where I also attended grammar school which was conducted by the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth.  Afterwards I attended Gordon Technical High School. One constant remained: both my home parish and secondary school: Resurrectionists priests and brothers.  These men were the religious leaders who were present as the parish priests, as well as the priests and brothers teachers at Gordon Technical HS.  The influence of the Resurrectionists played an important part in my life choice.  I entered the Resurrectionist novitiate which is a place and time of spiritual preparation in which one discerns the possibility of a vocation to religious life. 

After pronouncing first vows in September of 1964, I moved to the major seminary of the Resurrectionists in St. Louis, MO, where I studied both philosophy and theology with the Jesuits at St. Louis University.  There I completed a B.A. in classical languages and M.A. in systematic theology.

I was ordained a priest at St. Hyacinth Basilica in Chicago on April 8, 1972.  Almost immediately I was appointed to serve at the parish of Our Lady of Loretto in Spanish Lake, MO for four years before being appointed pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Brantford Ontario.  In January of 1979 I served as pastor at St. John the Evangelist Parish in Panama City, FL until June of 1986. Afterwards I was named pastor in Chicago, but this lasted only slightly more than a year when my then provincial superior died and I was asked to return to Our Lady of Loretto Parish as pastor for the next five years.  The next eighteen years were spent in Rome, Italy. For twelve of those years I served as a councilor to the superior general, and in 2005 was elected as superior general for a six year term. 

After returning to the United States I find myself in Woodridge, IL amid a warm and welcoming parish called St. Scholastica.  My immediate goal was to be a good pastor and to continue building  upon the many good ministries and programs that have begun and endure to this day.

 

I am confidant of this,  that the one who began a good work in you will continue to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus. [Philippians 1:6]

Deacon Tom Marciani, Permanent Deacon

I am from New Jersey, but actually was born in New York while my parents were vacationing there.  I am of Italian heritage and grew up in a mostly Italian neighborhood in Hackensack, New Jersey.  Early in my life, the Capuchin Franciscan priests and brothers at our family’s parish, St. Francis of Assisi, influenced me.  St. Francis and the Franciscans have always been special in my life.  I attended twelve years of Catholic education.  In grade school, Benedictine Sisters taught me and in high school the Sisters of Charity were my teachers.  I have a special fondness and gratitude for the religious sisters, brothers and priests from all religious orders that contributed and continue to contribute in a huge capacity to the Church and have been a vital part of Church history.

I was ordained a deacon in August of 2007 and served at St. Raphael Church in Naperville for the past nine years.  I worked as an engineer in telephone communications for thirty-six years.  The next twelve years I had the honor of being a hospice chaplain and retired in December of 2015.  My wife, Desiree was born and raised in New York.  She was a schoolteacher; worked in corporate America and served as the Associated Director for the Office of Family Ministry for the Diocese of Joliet for fifteen years.  While at the diocese she was responsible for the ministries concerning divorce, death, annulments and bereavement.

Desiree and I live in Bolingbrook and have been married for 19 years.  This is a second marriage for each of us.  Between us, we have four children and seven grand children. We both are passionate about the role we as Catholics and followers of Jesus play in promoting social justice for all of humanity.  We are grateful to be part of this wonderful community of St. Scholastica and we are looking forward to serving with you.

Kurt Meyer, Director of Music

Kurt began serving in the role of Director of Music in January of 2020, having previously been the Adult Choir Accompanist and Teen Choir Director since September of 2018. He has been a parishioner of St. Scholastica since childhood, having first joined the music ministry in eighth grade as a clarinetist, and then later joining the Handbell Choir and accompanying the Teen Choir throughout high school, and eventually leading the Instrumental Ensemble as Coordinator.

Prior to becoming the Adult Choir Accompanist and Teen Choir Director, Kurt was a regular substitute accompanist at many of the neighboring parishes, subbing for funerals, weddings, choir rehearsals, and regular weekend services.

Additionally, Kurt is also an avid music composer and arranger, having multiple pieces of handbell compositions and arrangements in print and published through various publishing houses.

Text Box: Office Support/Administrative Staff

Elizabeth Driscoll, Principal

Text Box: Faith Formation Staff

Miss Driscoll has been working in the Diocese of Joliet for over twenty years. She began working for the diocese at Saint Philip the Apostle School in Addison. While at Saint Philip the Apostle, Miss Driscoll taught in many capacities. She taught small group reading and math as well as computers and learning center before moving into the classroom full time.  Miss Driscoll taught fourth grade for two years.  She then taught first grade for thirteen years.  Following that, Miss Driscoll taught third grade for three years.  While teaching third grade she was also the assistant principal for two years.

Immersing gospel values into education has always been a focus for Miss Driscoll.  She has been a leader for social justice programs as well as serving on curriculum committees.  Miss Driscoll has also been a facilitator for drama and STEM enrichment as well.

Miss Driscoll received her bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Illinois State University and her master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Lewis University.

Fr. Ed Howe, CR, Parochial Vicar

After attending Our Lady of Victory grammar school and Gordon Tech H.S in Chicago,

Fr. Ed Howe entered the Congregation of the Resurrection in 1982, a Catholic religious community of priests and brothers. He professed first vows as a Brother on August 15, 1986 and then completed graduate work in Theology and Social Work.

From 1988 to 1991 Bro. Ed was assigned to St. Hedwig Catholic Church, located in the inner-city Chicago neighborhood of Buck Town where he worked with young people, senior citizens and the homeless. During part of this time he served as Executive Director of the Near Northwest Neighborhood Network.

In 1989 after a parishioner, on his way to Sunday mass with his family, was hit by a stray bullet from a gang fight, Bro. Ed brought Buck Town residents together to protest an area drug house and gang operation. A grassroots movement called "Drug Free Buck Town" emerged that succeeded in closing down 22 area drug houses over several years. The effort gained local and national media attention. In 1990 the effort received the Chicago Council on Urban Affairs “Community Organization Award” and was chronicled into the film "Takin' Back Buck Town" which received the 1990 International Television Association "Philo" Award.

From 1991 to 1992 he was assigned to Weber High School where he served as a counselor, religion teacher, student activities coordinator and soccer coach.
From 1992 to 2003 he worked at Gordon Tech H.S. in many capacities which included that of the school’s Social Worker, Head Varsity Soccer Coach and later as Director of Technology while assisting at St. Hedwig Parish. In 2002 he was inducted into the Gordon Tech Alumni Hall of Fame and in 2004 he was nominated by the late Bishop Edwin Conway and selected by the Religious Brothers Conference of Illinois as “Brother of the Year.” He received an Honorary Resolution from the Mayor and City Council of Chicago for his service to the citizens of Chicago.

From 2003 to 2005, Brother Ed served the Archdiocese of Chicago Department of Communications, Radio & Television Office. His responsibilities included offering technical support for Cardinal Francis George’s press conferences, daily Catholic Community of Faith radio show, programming the Archdiocese Instructional Television service and the television programs Sanctuary (airing on ABC 7) and The Church The Cardinal & You. One of the highlights of this ministry was involvement in the production of a documentary about Pope John Paul II and the election of Pope Benedict XVI that aired on ABC 7 in April of 2005.

In the year 2005, he was appointed as President and CEO of Gordon Tech HS where he served until 2008.  He was invited to deliver an Invocation before Mayor Richard M. Daley and the Chicago City Council members on March 12, 2008.

In 2008, after serving the church as a Brother for 22 years, Brother Ed was called through the inspiration of Cardinal Francis George to study for the priesthood. He attended Aquinas Institute of Theology in St. Louis Missouri to complete graduate studies for the priesthood and was ordained as a Deacon on December 19, 2009 and as a Priest on August 14, 2010.

After ordination in 2010, Fr. Ed was assigned by Bishop Peter Sartain of the Diocese of Joliet as the Pastor of Immaculate Conception Parish in Morris Illinois where he built a new church and served for the last 10 years.

Jean Palasz, Business Manager

I was born in Chicago and grew up in the west and south suburbs. I married my husband, Robert, in the Byzantine Catholic Church in 1989 and we have lived in Naperville ever since. My home parish is Annunciation of the Mother of God Byzantine Catholic Church in Homer Glen. I am a graduate of Loyola University of Chicago and was in the workforce for 7 years before my son, James, was born in 1993. My daughter, Gina, was born in 2000 and my youngest, Maria, in 2005. I was blessed to stay home with my children until 2014 when I started working part-time at Ascension of Our Lord Parish in Oakbrook Terrace as parish secretary and over time took on many responsibilities including editing the bulletin. I landed closer to home in 2019 when I accepted an administration position in the faith formation office at Our Lady of Mercy Parish in Aurora. In 2022 I replaced the vibrant and beloved Lianda Valentine who retired after an extensive, amazing career serving several parishes in the Diocese of Joliet. 

Sue Gosewehr, Administrative Assistant, Bulletin Editor, Web Master, & Wedding Coordinator

Bulletin editor, e-mail submissions at least 10 days before bulletin publish date.

Facilities Coordinator, submit request for facilities use at least 2 weeks in advance of your event. 

Wedding Coordinator, click for more information

Jennifer Michalik-Olson, Director of Youth Ministry

My name is Sue Gosewehr and I am the Parish Administrative Assistant.  My ministries include managing the calendar, publishing the bulletin, updating the web page, organizing mailings, scheduling groups for activities at the Welcome Kiosk in the breezeway, and supporting the office and pastoral staff in any way necessary.  I am also the parish Wedding Coordinator (LOVE IT!).

If you have ever visited my office, you know that I am an avid sports fan (especial Bears!), and collector of all types of toys!  My office reflects my creative side (although some call it cluttered).  It is my home away from home.

I am the mother of four adult children, and have been blessed with one grandchild.  I am extremely active in the Council of Catholic Women and as a member of the Administration Commission in my home Parish of St. Irene in Warrenville.  When I am not volunteering, I am busy baking, canning, sewing, and gardening.

My name is Jennifer Olson.  I have been a lifelong parishioner of St. Scholastica, receiving all of my Sacraments here.  I am married to Mark and we have three children, Braden, Mackenzie and Delaney who are in the Religious Education Program here.

I have been the Director of Youth Ministry at St. Scholastica since 1998.  It is my job to provide the vision and coordination for the parish’s efforts in comprehensive ministry to young people from 6th through 12th grades.  This includes weekly high school S.T.O.R.M. meetings on Sunday evenings, planning and facilitating 4-5 weekend retreats each year, including the two Confirmation Retreats, with a planning team, facilitating the Youth Leadership Team, which is responsible for planning, implementing, and evaluating the youth ministry program, planning and facilitating a week long summer Mission Trip and the GO MAD local middle school Mission Experience, coordinating our monthly Teen Masses and evening Masses with teen liturgical ministers, planning and coordinating trips to World Youth Day, the National Catholic Youth Conference and Diocesan or other Youth Conferences, and planning special event opportunities for community, prayer, catechesis, and service for high school and middle school students.  I recruit and train our wonderful adult volunteers.  I also coordinate a college Mission Trip and stay connected to our young adults to encourage them to stay involved in the Parish.  I work closely with the pastor, other staff, and other Youth Ministers in our Diocese.

This ministry has been a blessing in my life and I am blessed to be a part of a parish that supports it.  The teens and adult volunteers that participate in our programs are like a second family to each other and support each other in a Christian community.  I hope that all teenagers will join us for our meetings and retreats.  You are ALWAYS welcome!

Lisa Riedl, Clergy & Liturgy Administrative Assistant, Monday and Tuesday

Marisa Trevino, Parish Secretary, Wednesday through Friday

I am Lisa Riedl, and I have enjoyed serving the Parish Community of St. Scholastica since 2018.  I now job share the parish secretary position.  My ministries include welcoming parishioners, both on the phone and at the door, on Mondays and Tuesdays; preparing deposits; assisting with bulletin publishing; and preparing prayers and announcements for liturgies.

I attended St. Irene for elementary school.  When not in the office, I am Mom to three very active youngsters.  The twins are already in third grade!  The little one, is in second grade, preparing for her Sacraments.  She recently received her First Reconciliation, and is looking forward to her First Communion in the Spring.  Along with my husband of over 10 years, I love spending time with our children, family, and friends.

It is a privilege to serve the community of St. Scholastica Parish since October, 2020.  However, I was employed here in the past from 1999 to 2002.  Currently, I am a part-time bi-lingual (English and Spanish) Parish Secretary and Infant Baptism Coordinator.  My office hours are 8:00 am until 4:00 pm, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

I have been married since 1985.  My husband and I have two beautiful adult children and 2 adoring grandchildren.

I have a lifetime of experience volunteering in different Roman Catholic Churches in Illinois, California and Florida as a catechist, wedding coordinator, baptism coordinator, funeral coordinator, organized and attended retreats for both youth and adults, organized several fundraisers, choir member, lector and Eucharistic Minister. I have served on several mission trips in both Mexico and Ecuador.  I LOVE to travel.  I enjoy spending time with my family and friends.   It is an honor and privilege to serve the community of St. Scholastica Parish!

 

Es un privilegio server la parroquia desde October 2022.  Pero en el pasada, trabajé aqui desde 1999 hasta 2002.

Soy las secretaria parroquial bilingue (inglés y español) y tambien coodinadora de bautisos de infantes.

Mi horario de oficina son los Miercoles, Jueves y Viernes de 8 am hasta las 4 pm.

He estada casada desde 1985.  Mi esposo y yo temenos dos hijos y dos nietos.  Tengo una vida de experiencia como voluntaria en diferente Iglesias Católicas en Illinois, California y Florida como catequista, coordinadora de bodas, coordinadora de bautismos, coordinadora de funerales, organizando y asistiendo retiros para jóvenes y adultos, he organizado various eventos para recaudar fondos, ha sido miembro del coro, lectora y ministro de la Eucaristía.  He servido en varios viajes a México y Ecuador de misionera. Me encanta viajar.  Me encanta compartir mi vida con my familia y amistades.

Es un privilegio servir la parroquia; si necesita ayuda en español estoy aquí para servirlos.

Deacon Bob Wallace, Permanent Deacon

I have been a deacon since 1984 and previously served at St Dominic in Bolingbrook. I am married to Jan and we are parents of four children. And we enjoy our eight grandchildren!  We feel welcomed and encouraged by our St Scholastica clergy, staff and parishioners. 

I attended Marquette University (Milwaukee) for an electrical engineering degree. During my early working years I functioned as a software and test engineer. Mid career, I got an MBA (DePaul Univ) and transitioned to management consulting with a role to assist manufacturing companies improve their management of product data and product development processes.

I welcome the opportunity to minister here - at weekend Masses, preaching, celebrating Baptisms - and helping in other areas wherever there is a need. I have done most kinds of parish work during my diaconate years - including RCIA, marriage prep, teaching RE, counseling, Communion Services, planning and assisting at funerals - but in my mid 70s I am looking to slow down somewhat. However, I also recognize that there is a continuing need to assist in a parish setting and bring experience and leadership to parish ministries. (I also help at another parish where my daughter teaches and separately in social service ministries not tied to a parish.)

I am looking forward to meeting many more St Scholastica parishioners and to help extend invitations to those who are no longer active - encouraging them to return to active parish life here!