Three Lake Zurich residents who volunteer to help programs and ministries
offered by recently were honored by the Archdiocese of Chicago for their dedication to the parish.
Pam Lynch, Darin Heisterkamp and Kathy Donnelly were among a number of other volunteers throughout the archdiocese who were commended for outstanding service and achievement for catechesis and youth ministry.
After being nominated by individuals within their parish, their achievements were acknowledged at an awards banquet sponsored by the archdiocese at Drury Lane in Oakbrook Terrace on May 10.
Lynch works with teens to prepare them for confirmation and for adult educational programs.
“My volunteer life, as with the many other people I know, is continuous,” Lynch
said. “Over the years, through every event and activity, I go home filled in more ways than I can explain, I am honored to receive this award."
An organizer of many retreats and the leader of the teen Great Adventure
Bible Study, Lynch also is the religious education liaison for the St. Francis
de Sales Parish Council.
Since 2003, Heisterkamp has coordinated the preschool music program. He also heads the Christmas program and instructs the prelude before Mass twice each year.
"It is my great privilege to bring my gift of music to the youngest in our parish
as they begin their faith formation, and it's such a wonderful reward to share
in the enthusiasm,” Heisterkamp said. “Through music, I hope that I may continue to enrich and impassion others as they experience their faith in joyful celebration.”
For the last nine years, Donnelly has been a first-grade catechist and is known to
be very creative in using puppets, costumes and other props to engage children in the religious education program. She also creates a nativity play for parents of the children to enjoy.
“The children are amazing, often with their own bright insights of faith, which makes me wonder who learns more, the teacher or those taught,” Donnelly said.
Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I., also was in attendance at the Catechetical Youth Ministries Awards Banquet, which celebrates and honors individuals and groups nominated for their service.
“The St. Francis de Sales community is blessed to have many volunteers to sustain
the programs and ministries that give our parishioners a sense of belonging and
our community’s children the opportunity to grow in their faith,” said Diana Ogurek, a spokeswoman for the parish.