By TAMI QUIGLEY Staff writer
Diocesan scouts were honored for their efforts at the annual Diocesan Religious Emblems Award Ceremony May 21 at St. Mary, Kutztown.
Sixty-six youth and three adults were recognized with medals and awards at the ceremony conducted by the Allentown Diocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting (ADCCOS). The ceremony was coordinated by the diocesan Office of Youth, Young Adult and Family Ministry (OYYAFM) and the Minsi Trails Catholic Committee on Scouting with Bill Brodniak.
Father Eric Tolentino, director of Catholic scouting in the diocese, presided at the ceremony that included benediction and exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.
Bernard Hofman is lay chairman of the Diocesan Committee on Scouting.
The program included hymns, Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath, homily, blessing and presentation of medals.
The program was in loving memory of the late Father Joseph Grembocki, longtime diocesan scouting chaplain.
The Ad Altare Dei program equips scouts to take their place in the world as maturing Catholics and American citizens. Through sacramental exploration and practice, scouts grow in appreciation for the demands and blessings of discipleship.
The following boys of the Hawk Mountain Council were recipients of this award:
- Holy Guardian Angels, Reading – Christian Dunlap, William Mickulik, Christopher Trubille and Nathan Wilson.
- St. Ambrose, Schuylkill Haven – Robert Hudopohl.
- St. Charles Borromeo, Ashland – Rhaife Combs and Evan Houser.
- St. Joseph, Reading – Christopher Kochel.
The following young people of Minsi Trails Council were recipients of this award:
- Cathedral of St. Catharine of Siena, Allentown – Brendon Christ and Conor Christ.
- Holy Family, Nazareth – Stephen Beck III and Keith Neidig.
- Queenship of Mary, Northampton – Edward Miller.
- St. Thomas More, Allentown – Liam Damitz, Michael Judge, Seamus McGee and Sam Ulincy.
The Pope Pius XII program was developed in recognition of the need for Catholic lay leaders in church and community affairs. The emblem reflects the scout’s growing concern with the world of God as well as the world of man. Guided by the Holy Spirit, this formation properly carried out will lead to transformed youth geared to their role as Christian leaders.
The following young person of the Hawk Mountain Council is recipient of this award:
- Holy Guardian Angels, Reading – Lucas Fick.
Todd McGreggor, parishioner of Notre Dame of Bethlehem, received the St. George Award. This national award, given by the National Catholic Committee on Scouting, acting through the local diocese, recognizes members of the laity and clergy, scouts and nonscouts, who have made significant and outstanding contributions to the spiritual development of Catholic youth in Scouting.
McGreggor has served on the professional staff of six councils over the past 29 years. He has attended and aided the leadership of the Catholic retreat at Camp Trexler. In addition to overseeing various scouting activities, McGreggor has served as the president of Notre Dame of Bethlehem’s parish council, vice chair of the Strategic Planning Committee and chair of the Monthly Parish Breakfast Committee.
McGreggor is also a productive member of his community; he has coached Little League Baseball, youth soccer, lacrosse and basketball.
Andrew Azan, parishioner of Sacred Heart, Bethlehem, received The Bishop’s Award. The Allentown Diocese Catholic Committee on Scouting instituted The Bishop’s Award to recognize the contribution of adult leaders in the spiritual aspects of the scouting program within the Catholic Church in the Diocese of Allentown.
Azan was an assistant den leader and a den leader for five years; he is now an assistant scout master with Troop 359. He has received the 2016 Star Award for outstanding service, presented by the Boy Scouts of America.
In addition to his good work with scouts, Azan has taught confirmation classes in his parish for seven years; volunteers at St. Francis Retreat House, Easton; and is a volunteer for the American Red Cross.
Joanne Loeper, parishioner of St. Catharine of Siena, Reading, received the For God and Youth Award. This prestigious recognition is given by the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry to adults who have made a significant impact on youth ministry within their organization, parish, diocese and regional level.
Nominees must be recipients of the St. Anne Medal, the Regional Glass Cross of Service, and actively serving young people for more than ten years.
Loeper began her youth ministry in 1978 as a Brownie Girl Scout leader. Over the years she has served in a variety of roles advocating for girls. She is the Pagoda Service Unit religious coordinator and holds positions on the Catholic Committee of Girl Scouts, Campfire Girls and American Heritage Girls Region 3, and the Allentown Diocese Catholic Committee on Scouting.
Loeper has received the St. Anne Medal and the Region Crystal Cross of Service in recognition of actively serving young people for almost 40 years.
Loeper is an extraordinary minister of the Eucharist at St. Catharine. She is still active in Girl Scouting as a Daisy Girl Scout Leader.
Through Mary, the first disciple, young Catholics grow in appreciation of Mary and in understanding themselves. The meet Mary in Scripture as a young teenager and follow her journey as she becomes a woman and the Mother of God.
The following young people from St. Thomas More, Allentown are recipients of the Mary the First Disciple Award: Eva Bruce, Kelly Carbone, Carolina Catilao-Sanchez, Madison Kaiser and Mary Wilson.
The purpose of the Parvuli Dei (Children of God) Emblem is to help young boys explore a wide range of activities to discover the presence of God in their daily lives as members of their families and parishes, and to develop a good, positive self-image through the contributions they can make to the group or community.
The following young people of the Hawk Mountain Council are recipients of this award: Toby Beougher, Maxwell Clews, Liam Cunningham, Billy Davis, Donna Giglio, Luke Greblick, Nathan Kovach, Lucien Kraycik, Benjamin Mickulik, Aidan Tomchak and Liam Tomchak.
The following young people of the Minsi Trails Council are recipients of this award: Mychael Bauer, Jackson Bruce, J.T. Cunningham, Keegan Damitz, Simeon DeMaster, Supreeth Dmello, Hayden Granitz, Glen Guida, Gavin Hagenbach, Ethan Haller, Jonathan Hauspurg, Michael Hurd, Adam Issermoyer, Aidan Joyce, Ilia Khallouf and Nicholas Lewbart.
Also, Sebastian Malaver, Matthew McCarthy, Jesse McCloud, Luke Mille, Robert Morgan, Jackson Neidert, Skylar Pfeffer, John-Paul Pierce, Adrian Pirog, Luke Rizzo, William Samra, Adam Snyder, Joseph Svetz, James Troyan, Donnivan Unterberg and Alex Younes.