‘Unsung heroes in our midst’

awardHonored with Immaculata Awards

Lay volunteers from more than 60 parishes across the diocese were honored with Immaculata Awards  for service during a special vespers service and awards ceremony at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse Dec. 9.

   Created and first presented by Bishop Robert Cunningham in 2011 as part of the celebration of the diocese’s 125th anniversary, the Immaculata Awards recognize the “unsung heroes in our midst who build up our parish communities by extraordinary service.” Recipients are nominated for the award by their pastors and/or parish councils.

   In his homily, Bishop Cunningham expressed his deep gratitude for the recipients’ service and for their efforts to spread the Gospel message through their examples, especially in light of the Year of Faith.


   “We acknowledge your gift of unselfish time and talent to the mission of the Church,” he said. Drawing on the words of St. Teresa of Avila, he continued, “‘Christ has no body but yours, no hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands with which he blesses the world.’ Through your words and actions, his Gospel is proclaimed.”


   A list of this year’s Immaculata Awards honorees appears on the following page, along with some scenes from the ceremony.

Parish Honorees

• Rutheda & James Burke,
St. Augustine, Baldwinsville
• Susan Darmstedter, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Baldwinsville
• Donald J. Snyder, St. Mary of the Assumption, Baldwinsville
• Marjorie M. Mangan, St. Francis of Assisi, Binghamton
• Nancy Lee Sweeney, St. Patrick, Binghamton
• Eileen S. Haley, St. Thomas Aquinas, Binghamton
• Walter E. Caroompas, Sts. John & Andrew, Binghamton
• Patricia M. Koch, St. Francis of Assisi, Bridgeport
• Michael & Nancy Choquette,
St. John the Evangelist, Camden
• Zelda Klaczko, St. Joseph, Camillus
• Connie Griffin, St. Patrick –
St. Anthony, Chadwicks
• Paul & Erin Connelly, St. Patrick, Chittenango
• Elaine A. Davis, St. Mary, Cleveland
• Eldora Miller, St. Bernadette, Constantia
• Tiffany A. Koszalka, Holy Cross, DeWitt
• Mary Handlin, St. Matthew,
East Syracuse
• Joan Spadine, Our Lady of Good Counsel, Endicott
• Frances DeGregorio, St. Ambrose, Endicott
• Armando & Anita Ciacelli,
St. Anthony of Padua, Endicott
• William & Beverly Marsh,
St. Casimir, Endicott
• Paul & Diana Topencik, St. Joseph, Endicott
• Ann Klarmann, Church of the Holy Family, Endwell
• Robert M. Kelly, Immaculate Conception, Fayetteville
• Judy & Robert Young, Holy Trinity, Fulton
• Mary & William Kimbark, Immaculate Conception, Greene
• Gertrude D. Pownall, St. Mary, Hamilton
• Ruth Giammichele, St. James, Johnson City
• Jane A. Klaben, St. Patrick, Jordan
• David Prence, St. Joseph, LaFayette
• Donella Murphy, St. Joseph,
Lee Center
• Marcus & Lisa Niessen, Pope John XXIII, Liverpool
• Albert & Patricia Krzyzewski,
Most Holy Rosary, Maine
• Patrick & Alfreda Heagerty, St. Ann, Manlius
• Michael & Martha Lollis, St. Francis Xavier, Marcellus
• Suzette Heinley, St. Margaret, Mattydale
• Kenneth Gray, St. Mary of the Assumption, Minoa
• Jim & Nettie Periard, St. Joan of Arc, Morrisville
• Wanda Gregory, St. John the Evangelist, New Hartford
• Lynn Springer, Sacred Heart –
St. Mary, New York Mills
• Wallace & Nettie DeGroot, St. Rose of Lima, North Syracuse
• John F. Franco, St. Joseph, Oxford
• Alice Allen, St. Stephen, Phoenix
• Ann M. Derr, Immaculate Conception, Pompey
• John & Catherine Schupp, Christ our Light, Pulaski
• Mary Ellen Flanigan, St. Mary, Rome
• Marion Waite, St. Peter, Rome
• Shirley W. Pritchard, St. Paul, Rome
• Kitty Spinelli, St. Mary of the Lake, Skaneateles
• Paul P. Drotar, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Syracuse
• Maureen Malay, Holy Family, Syracuse
• Kathleen Byrne, Most Holy Rosary, Syracuse
• Fred Plumpton, Our Lady of Lourdes, Syracuse
• James A. Arena, Our Lady of Pompei – St. Peter, Syracuse
• Maria V. Johnson, St. Anthony of Padua, Syracuse
• Bernard A. Schmidt, St. Charles Borromeo, Syracuse
• Sheila Austin, St. James, Syracuse
• Genevieve DiMento, St. John the Baptist/Holy Trinity, Syracuse
• Gerald V. McMahon, St. Michael-
St. Peter, Syracuse
• Carl M. Oropallo, St. Vincent dePaul, Syracuse
• Louise Lutz, St. Leo, Tully
• Tracy Nicewicz, Holy Trinity, Utica
• Richard & Grace Dunn, Our Lady of Lourdes, Utica
• Dominick A. Trotta, St. Mark, Utica
• David Struz, St. Mary Mt. Carmel-Blessed Sacrament, Utica
• Eleanor McClellan-Mead, Our Lady of Sorrows, Vestal
• Kenneth Bates, St. Patrick,
Whitney Point
• Dawn Odinek, St. Stephen,
Whitney Point

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