By: Ceci Fano-Bryan and Jennifer Wild
Hello, I’m Ceci Fano-Bryan and I serve as Co-Chair along with Jen Wild to Old St. Patrick’s Family Advisory Board (FAB). My husband, Richard, and I were originally drawn to Old St. Pat’s for reasons that might be familiar to you. The homilies resonated. The masses uplifted. The priests delivered the teachings of Jesus Christ in a way that reached into our hearts, that made us think, and that moved us and stayed with us as we walked out the church doors toward our week ahead. Our daughters, Luisa age 17, and Maria Elena (Leni) age 15, were baptized at Old St. Pat’s, attended FXW, and received their sacraments at Old St. Pat’s. Now they are involved in Foundations Youth Ministry. They have had the opportunity to serve communities in need, both locally and throughout the country. As a parent, I’ve been blessed to have had the support not only of good schools and family, but also the support of a wonderful church community. I wanted to be a part of it. It’s been a pleasure to be involved, along with my husband and daughters, in the various activities of Family Ministry including Family Mass, Altar Service, Special Friends Mass, Blueprints and Foundations Youth Ministry, Special Events such as Daddy Daughter Dance and Mother Son Bowling, and the many service opportunities organized by our SPOKES Committee. Other areas that FAB helps with include Choir, Adoption, Interfaith, Parents and Tots. I’ve always been impressed by the many ways that Old St. Pat’s builds community. Helping out on Family Advisory Board has given me a view of the “behind the scenes”, encouraged me to participate more, and provided a chance to get to know the people that I see at church.
Hello! I am Jennifer Wild, Ceci’s FAB co-chair, and I, too, had a journey on my way to finding Old St. Patrick’s Church. Our family of 5 (Craig, Jennifer, Kate and Claire age 17, and John age 12) were looking for a church that gave us a deep spiritual experience, even if it meant traveling a long distance, and we didn’t, initially, know the fellow church goers sitting next to us. After 12 years, I am happy to report our cup continues to be filled at Mass, but now we have many relationships with the wonderful people we see every week. We did it by getting involved, first with the Children’s Choir, Partners, Foundations, and now, the Family Advisory Board. As Craig and I prepare our two seniors to graduate from high school, there is no question that our family’s involvement with Old St. Pat’s and its programs have been a vital influence on our children and family. We are a “destination church” I heard an Old St. Pat’s priest say once. Our people travel from all over the Chicago area to be at Old St. Pat’s, and you can feel the intention, with every staff member, within every Mass, and in every committee I participate, especially the Family Advisory Board.
The mission of the Family Advisory Board is to facilitate the work of Family Ministry. Family Ministry at Old St. Patrick’s Church provides quality opportunities for families to grow in faith together. Recognizing that the definition of a family takes many forms and is experienced in varied ways at different moments in our lives, we strive to address the needs of families holistically. Families are an integral component of our lives and our communities. Together as one family with Jesus Christ, we will grow in understanding and appreciation of family life while enriching our own families.
We resolve to provide family-based faith through our worship, formation, our greater faith community and service to all our neighbors. We commit to reach out to all families, and strive to create opportunities for family-shared faith experiences.
If you and your family would like to learn more about how you can get involved, we welcome you!
Contact either Jen firstname.lastname@example.org or Ceci cecifano@ gmail.com and we will find a way for you to participate in the long tradition of faith formation within our Family community.