REGINA — Each of five new Regina archdiocesan staff members said their decision to join the archdiocese was influenced in some way by their faith and a call from God to serve.
Braden Kuntz is working with Michelle Braden in youth ministry; Jeanine Mann and Diana Demaria provide general staff support with Mann providing support to Brett Salkeld in the diaconate program and ecumenical office as well as Social Justice and Communications. Demaria provides office support for Denise Walsh in the annual appeal office; Jennifer Ochieng is the assistant financial officer and Eric Gurash is the co-ordinator for Lay Ministry and Evangelization. Four fill positions left vacant through retirements while Kuntz is in a new position to support a growing workload in youth ministry.
Ochieng obtained her CA designation while working with the provincial auditor’s office. Coming to the archdiocese business office she said was a unique opportunity to combine faith and accounting. “There was a little call from God there, too, pulling on my heartstrings.”
Kuntz worked as co-ordinator of Youth Ministry at Regina’s Resurrection Parish for two years and through that did some work with archdiocesan youth co-ordinator Michelle Braden on the Young Adult Leadership Team. “It’s a new opportunity and jobs don’t open up very often at the archdiocese, so I thought I would give it a chance.”
Mann worked in retail before becoming pastoral assistant at Holy Cross. “They were having difficulty filling the position and I felt a call to step in.” She stayed for a year and a half but didn’t feel she was meant to stay there. She didn’t renew her contract and took some casual work until the archdiocese opened and appealed to her.
Gurash was pastoral assistant at Christ the King Parish for 14 years before arriving at the archdiocese. He said he felt God was calling him to a different form of ministry. “One of the things about this ministry is that it allows me to focus in on a particular area of ministry. Here I can focus on adult faith formation.” He hopes to put more emphasis on the evangelization side of his ministry.
Demaria and her husband came to Canada from France for a new life of opportunity. She was an adviser for overseas employment and felt guided by the Holy Spirit to work with people experiencing professional, health and family issues. “Working with the archdiocese gives me the opportunity to live my faith every day to deepen and strengthen my relationship with Christ.” It also helps her focus on Christian values. “I truly feel in symbiosis with this peaceful environment that helps me grow spiritually.”
Demaria and Mann hold part-time positions; the other three are full time.