On Nov. 13, parishioners of Church of the Little Flower in Berkeley Heights were honored during the Archdiocese of Newark's Youth Ministry Recognition Mass. The Recognition Mass is held annually at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark. Teen and adult volunteers from all over the Archdiocese of Newark, which includes Union, Essex, Bergen, and Hudson counties, are celebrated and recognized for their exemplary involvement in Catholic youth ministry.
This year, Mass was concelebrated by several priests of the Archdiocese, including the pastor of Church of the Little Flower, the Rev. Andy Prachar. Robert Grisi and Zachary Heissler, both seniors at Governor Livingston High School, received the "Youth Recognition" award for their outstanding commitment to youth ministry at Little Flower. Lisa Romeo a 2005 graduate of Governor Livingston, and a 2009 graduate of Loyola, received the "Adult Recognition" award for her exceptional service to the teens of Little Flower. She is now an admissions counselor at Felician College. Barbara Ruchlicki, a senior at Governor Livingston, was the recipient of the "St. Timothy Award" for Union County. This award is given to one teen per county within the Archdiocese, to acknowledge her contributions to and involvement in the youth ministry program as well as the parish as a whole.
Award recipients were called up to the main altar to receive a sign of appreciation. “Youth Recognition” and “Adult Recognition” award winners each received a lapel pin with a cross or candle, respectively, from the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry. “St. Timothy Award” winners received a glass plaque, also from NFCYM, with the following verse from St. Paul’s first letter to Timothy: “Let no one have contempt for your youth, but set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity” (1 Tim 4:12).