Deacon Jose Luis Abreu, 47, is a parishioner of St. Catherine of Genoa in Manhattan, where he is a member of the parish council, a lector and an Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. He is the main coordinator for the Spanish Seminar: Life in the Spirit. Jose, who is single, has worked as a paraprofessional in District 75 in the Bronx for 12 years. He attended Hostos Community College.
Deacon James Cowan, 65, has been married to his wife, Pat, for 43 years. Their children Jennifer, Allison and James, and five grandchildren live on Staten Island where the Cowans have been parishioners of Our Lady of Good Counsel parish for over 20 years. He graduated from Cardinal Hayes High School in the Bronx and St. Francis College in Brooklyn, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in business management. His insurance industry career included 37 years with Marsh Inc., the last 14 as managing director and chairman of an international division, before he retired five years ago. He is chairman of the Catholic Elementary School Region of Staten Island and cluster and parish chair for Making All Things New. At Our Lady of Good Counsel, he leads the Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, altar server and baptism ministries.
Deacon Ivan Gemio, 43, is a parishioner of Corpus Christi and Our Lady of the Rosary in Port Chester. He is married to Maria and they have one son, Lucas. He holds a master’s degree in religious studies from St. Joseph’s Seminary, Dunwoodie. He has been a Salesian cooperator since 2004. A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, he is employed as a New York state civil servant.
Deacon Michel Hodge, 44, is a parishioner of St. Charles Borromeo and All Saints in Harlem. His ministry activities include lectoring, volunteering at the food pantry, serving on parish liturgy committees and organizing retreats. An executive at CUNY Queensborough Community College, he works to professionally develop students and staff. He attended Mount St. Michael Academy in the Bronx and earned a bachelor’s degree in aviation management from Florida Tech and a master’s in organizational leadership from Purdue University, and he is completing a master’s in theology from St. Joseph Seminary. He and his wife of 19 years, Stacey, reside in the Bronx. He looks forward to serving in his parish’s RCIA program.
Deacon John E. Hoey, 64, is a parishioner of St. Christopher and St. Sylvia in Red Hook. He has been married to Teresa for 16 years. They have 10 nieces and nephews. John served in the U.S. Navy (active and reserve) for 13 years as a hospital corpsman. He obtained a medical degree from Ross University in New Jersey and has been a practicing physician for more than 20 years. He holds a master’s degree in medical management from Carnegie Mellon University, and a master’s in pastoral theology from St. Joseph’s College. He is a New York state police surgeon. He has served the parish as a lector, Eucharistic minister, acolyte and RCIA catechist.
Deacon Bernard (Barney) Kahn, 61, a parishioner of St. Mary’s in Washingtonville for more than 30 years, has been married to his wife Rosemarie (Rory) for 39 years. They have two married children and two grandchildren. He has been a professor of manufacturing and marketing at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) for 37 years, and Parsons the New School for Design for 14 years. He is an IT systems manager at FIT. He holds a master’s in organizational management from the University of Phoenix and a bachelor’s in production management from FIT. He seeks to continue serving St. Mary’s parish community, including RCIA, and Orange Regional Hospital as well as ministering to the sick and poor of Orange County and New York City.
Deacon Adhur Lekovic, 42, is a convert from Islam. He was baptized and received into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil in 2002. He is married to Elsa and they have five children—Emma, Adriel, Amelia, Eva and a newborn baby, Andrea. He is a parishioner of St. Columbanus in Cortlandt Manor, where he runs the RCIA program, and is an Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion and lector. He has worked in an antiques shop for more than 20 years and is an expert in restoration of Tiffany stained glass lamps.
Deacon Carl Locatelli, 74, is a parishioner of St. Paul’s, Bullville, where he has served as a lector, Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, parish council member, catechist in the RCIA program and member of the Adult Faith Formation committee. Carl and his wife, Liz, have taught the baptism preparation classes for new parents. They have two adult daughters, Lauren Masci and Kristen Reed, and four grandchildren. He grew up in St. Bartholomew’s parish in Yonkers, and attended Cathedral Prep. He received his bachelor’s degree from St. Joseph’s Seminary, his master’s in English from Manhattan College and a certificate in administration from SUNY New Paltz. He is retired from Albertus Magnus High School in Bardonia, where he worked as an English teacher and an assistant principal.
Deacon Raymundo G. Masbad Jr., 61, has been married to his wife, Lisa, for 32 years. They have two children, Eric and Paul. They have been parishioners of St. Anthony of Padua in Nanuet for 29 years. He is an usher, lector and Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion. He recruits and trains boys and girls from the parish’s PREP program to become altar servers. He teaches confirmation candidates. He holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Manhattan College and was employed in the aerospace industry before working in information technology.
Deacon Gregory Miller, 63, is a member of St. Lawrence O’Toole parish in Brewster. As a youngster, he considered the priesthood and attended St. Joseph’s Seraphic Seminary in Callicoon. He is a graduate of Merrimack College in North Andover, Mass., with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and psychology. He is a father of three and grandfather to three grandchildren. He has served as a lector for most of his life, taught religious education to youngsters preparing for confirmation, led a youth group affiliated with the St. Vincent DePaul Society, worked with the Apostolate of the Suffering in Albany and most recently was the lay director for a parish Men’s Cornerstone retreat. Semi-retired, he works as a consultant to the insurance industry.
Deacon Eymard Joseph Smith, 65, has been married to Peggie for 42 years. Their adult son, Thomas Michael, is married. He was born and raised in County Cavan, Ireland. He was educated at Drumkilly National School and St. Patrick’s College, Cavan. He came to New York in 1970 and fortified his faith at St. Philip Neri parish in the Bronx and later at St. Brendan’s parish in the Bronx, where he and Peggie were married. At St. Barnabas parish in the Bronx, he serves as a lector, Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, teacher in the RCIA program, the spiritual adviser of the St. Vincent DePaul Conference, prayer leader for the Following Christ program and religious education teacher. He is a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus and a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, Westchester. He works for the city of Yonkers as a senior special projects coordinator.
Deacon Michael Sweeney, 43, is a parishioner of St. Mary of the Snow and St. Joseph in Saugerties. He has been involved in church music ministries for 27 years. He met his wife, Deanna, in the music ministry. Both have served in several parish ministries. His stepdaughters, Jennifer and Danielle, are both college students. He has a bachelor’s degree in music from SUNY New Paltz.