February 16th, 2019, was a very special day for Michaela Staskiewicz as she was recognized for her dedicated service to St. Mary’s Parish as Altar Server of the Year. Michaela was invited to St. Joseph’s Cathedral with her family to celebrate Mass and participate in serving at that Mass as well by carrying Bishop Malone’s Crosier. She was rewarded with a beautiful medal for her special achievement. After Mass, she and her family attended the reception in the Convention Center with Father Bob and all the other Altar Servers of the Year from different parishes.
Every year, each parish in the Diocese, has the ability to recognize an altar server of excellence and dedication to the ministry. Father Bob, commented on the criteria for selection, “I look at the character of the server, their dedication, their desire to love and serve, their devotion to the Eucharist, the dignity in which they carry themselves in this role, and the desire to step forward to help when there are additional needs. Michaela met every bit of that criteria.”
Michaela has been serving since she was in 4th grade, which is when the invite to serve is offered to our young students and parishioners here at St. Mary’s. You will find her on the altar serving an average of two to four times per month.
She was baptized at St. Mary’s and has been here ever since. She intends to continue serving until Confirmation. At that time, she is considering continued service to her parish by possibly becoming a Eucharistic Minister, like her mom. Both parents are heavily involved in service to St. Mary’s for giving of their time, setting a beautiful example for Michaela! Peter is an usher and Sue, a Eucharistic minister. Michaela finds that serving, “keeps her involved.” She also comments that “she gets more out of Mass and better understands it by serving; it helps her meet new people and friends from many different schools.” We know this to be true as St. Mary’s faith community is a mix of many friends in Christ from all over our surrounding community. Our parish is a true family of friends in Christ.
Michaela stays busy with school, on her school’s Cross Country team, and has played piano since Kindergarten and now plays clarinet as well. As a busy student, she makes sure she finds the time to be present and serve from her heart for our parish and for our Church.
Please join us in congratulating Michaela when you see her at Mass and thanking all of our altar servers for their dedicated service! It takes love of Church to commit your time to this ministry, and our youth exemplify that love when they make serving a priority in their life!