Top Catholic teens honored

Monday, May 14, 2018 - Updated: 12:22 pm

Pittsburgh Catholic Staff Report

Twelve youths in the Diocese of Pittsburgh were recognized May 7 for exemplifying the qualities of moral integrity, prayerfulness, good works and Christian leadership.

Bishop David Zubik presented St. Timothy Awards to the outstanding Catholic young people during a dinner at St. Paul Seminary.

The awards are given annually to those who show zeal for their youth ministry program, high school ministry team or youth work in general.

The following teens — accompanied here by comments from their nomination letters — were chosen as 2018 St. Timothy Award winners:

Makenzie Butler of St. Peter Parish on Pittsburgh’s North Side: “Makenzie is a dependable member of the youth ministry program and leads group prayer and activities without hesitation or supervision. She always has a positive attitude, even when facing adversity in her personal life.”

Isaac Davanzati of St. Joseph Parish in Cabot: “He witnesses to his faith through morality and integrity in unique ways. He firmly believes we can ‘pray unceasingly’ if we do all things with God, as we might do all things with a friend by our side.”

Kathryn Dickey of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart High School: “She took it upon herself to create a youth group at school called Aspire that meets weekly after school and provides a place for students seeking community rooted in Christ. She plans, advertises and executes the entire group at every meeting on her own.”

Matthew Formica of St. Michael Parish in Elizabeth: “His passion for combining the Gospel message with physical activities and various games has positioned him as the recognized leader among the youth.”

Brian Freyvogel of Central Catholic High School: “He has a strong commitment to forming relationships at St. Raphael’s elementary after-school program, standing out from the other volunteers. Brian tries to grow in deeper relationships with those he encounters in service each week.”

Diana Martinez Guerrero of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Parish in Meadow Lands: “Diana visibly embodies the message that Jesus came for all of us and that we are all called to relationship with him. Using her talents, she was extremely helpful in planning and executing the Strides for Solidarity service event, a youth-led initiative that collected hundreds of coats for the local homeless community.”

Dominic Melchiorre of St. Sebastian Parish in Ross Township: “Dominic has a zeal for Christ and dedication to the church, and a special love for the youth and mission of his parish. He is a blessing as a role model to the younger members of the parish.”

Caitlin Pingree of St. Robert Bellarmine Parish in East McKeesport: “Caitlin has a wonderful personal relationship with God and a passion for serving others. She goes out of her way to talk to everyone at youth group and makes sure they feel welcomed and important.”

Meghan Rodgers of SS. John and Paul Parish in Franklin Park/Marshall Township: “She is a natural leader, carrying herself with confidence but humble dignity. Filled with joy, she is excitedly pursuing as many ways as she can to grow in her relationship with Jesus.”

Kate Rosello of St. Thomas More Parish in Bethel Park: “Kate loves the Lord with her whole heart and, not being made shy or timid by her humility, she shares her search, her questions, her experiences and her ever-deepening faith authentically, joyfully and fearlessly with her peers.”

Schanelle-Marie Saldanha of Bishop Canevin High School: “In all her leadership roles, she sees Christ as the example of the leader she is to imitate. Connected directly to her passion to lead others, Schanelle-Marie demonstrates the value of service as an integral component of the Christian life.”

Gregory Schratz of St. Joseph High School: “Greg’s favorite way to lead is through music. When he visited a nursing home, he brought his guitar and cheered the elderly with his music. Greg boldly shares and discusses his Catholic faith with others.”

The award selection committee included Christopher Chapman, Judene Indovina, Greta Stokes Tucker, Theresa Sullivan, Jorge Vela and Jacob Williamson.

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