St. Teresa of Calcutta Faith in Action Award

2022 St. Teresa of Calcutta Faith in Action Award

We are pleased to announce the Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board’s St. Teresa of Calcutta Faith in Action Award recipients! The St. Teresa of Calcutta Faith in Action Award recognizes exemplary service to Catholic education. This year’s award recipients represent the 17th generation of winners. The nominees for this award represent all stakeholder groups in the Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board community – employees, parents, caregivers, volunteers, clergy, and parishioners. These remarkable volunteers demonstrate their faith, contribute to their community, and inspire us all.  Congratulations!

Name School Parish
Cathy Garrick St. James Church, Seaforth
Robert Leyser St. Mary’s School, Listowel St. Joseph’s Church, Stratford
Steve Hulshof St. Patrick’s School, Kinkora St. Patrick’s Church, Kinkora
Linda Hulshof St. Patrick’s School, Kinkora St. Patrick’s Church, Kinkora
Deb McCarthy St. James School, Seaforth St. Patrick’s Church Dublin
Debbie Terpstra St. Patrick’s School, Dublin St. Ambrose Church, Brussels
Fr. Matthew George Lake Huron Catholic Family of Parishes
Sean G. McDade St. Mary’s School, Goderich St. Peter’s Church, Goderich

This year the award recipients were recognized at the Catholic Education Week Mass on Monday, May 2, 2022, at St. Patrick’s Church in Dublin.

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Cathy Garrick – St. James Church, Seaforth

Cathy Garrick

Cathy Garrick is an active parish member at St. James Catholic Church in the Perth-Huron Crossroads Family of Parishes. Cathy is part of the Catholic Women’s League, Youth and Adult Ministry and volunteers for Community Outreach. Cathy also supports faith formation for young people by integrating fun and faith while preparing students for sacraments. She has been a leader in many ministry programs for elementary and secondary students.

Cathy offers her time to chaperon youth events such as the Steubenville Youth Conferences. Cathy is an advocate for others and notices when people in the parish community might need support; in these times, discussion and are prayers offered. During the pandemic, Cathy was on the Healthy and Safety Committee as a key member who volunteered her time preparing the Church to welcome parishioners.

Robert Leyser – St. Mary’s School, Listowel / St. Joseph’s Church, Stratford

Rob Leyser

Rob Leyser is a Grade 4/5 Teacher at St. Mary’s Catholic School in Listowel and a parishioner at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Stratford in the Avon-Thames Family of Parishes.

Rob is a positive and faithful staff and parish member. Rob is a Eucharistic Minister at his parish. Rob shares the Catholic faith not only with his students but with the entire student body and staff at St. Mary’s School. For example, bringing in Lent activities for staff and students to help the school community draw closer to their faith during this Lenten season. Rob volunteers his time organizing school charity fundraisers and he currently leads the Faith In Action Team at St. Mary’s.

Rob is very conscious of connecting with everyone at school and welcoming guests visiting the school. Rob is a very positive person who is always looking out for the well-being of everyone. His cheerful personality and his eagerness to ensure our students and staff are “Good” never goes unnoticed.

Linda and Steve Hulshof – St. Patrick’s School, Kinkora / St. Patrick’s Church, Kinkora

Linda and Steve Hulshof

Linda and Steve Hulshof are both active parish members at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in the Perth-Huron Crossroads Family of Parishes as Eucharistic Ministers, helping with Sunday School, being part of COR, Parish Council, and the Synod, to volunteering their time to clean the church. For many years, Linda has been a member of the Catholic Women’s League and Steve has been a member of the Knights of Columbus. Their volunteer work does not go unnoticed, from mission trips to building Christmas floats and making hot plates and coasters to raise money for those in need.

As former parents of St. Patrick’s Catholic School in Kinkora, Linda and Steve continue to support the school in many ways. Linda and Steve always look for the best in people and give everyone a chance. They are both valued members of the community and have touched many lives both young and old. Linda and Steve have given hours of their time and support to the St. Patrick’s parish and school communities. The community feels very blessed to have their support and leadership.

Deb McCarthy – St. James School, Seaforth / St. Patrick’s Church, Dublin

Deb McCarthy

Deb McCarthy is the current principal at St. James School in Seaforth. Deb exemplifies the qualities of St. Teresa in so many facets of her life, from the school to the community to the parish. Deb is an active member of St. Patrick’s Parish in Dublin. Deb is an active Catholic Women’s League member, she is a regular attendee and lector (including being a schedule organizer), she is a past member of the Parish Council, volunteers as the Sunday School Coordinator, assists with the distribution of sacrament gifts and regularly works with the Parish Youth Advisor. Deb recently organized an event for a young church member who passed away to support the family. She is willing to help with any youth events when asked and has done so regularly in the past. Deb helps regularly with church events to raise money for various charities.

Debbie Terpstra – St. Patrick’s School, Dublin / St. Ambrose Church, Brussels

Debbie Terpstra

Debbie Terpstra is a current parent volunteer at St. Columban and St. Patrick’s School in Dublin. Debbie has been instrumental in setting up our outdoor learning spaces at St. Columban and St. Patrick’s Schools. She has dedicated many hours to making beautiful outdoor flower gardens located beside the pavilion at each school. She has also helped with cleaning up the school’s yard, making it a positive place for our students to learn and play.

Debbie has helped with many school and community events, such as the Pink Ribbon Event and social justice initiatives. Debbie is a member of St. Ambrose Church in Brussels and is an active participant in Masses and liturgies. Debbie is a member of the parish choir. Debbie is always willing to help as a volunteer. She is a genuine, faith-filled, positive individual who works hard in all aspects of her life.

Debbie is very supportive of Catholic Education and sees the good in all people. Debbie is a parent who fully embraces the importance of supporting the school, home and parish connections. She does so by living her life as an excellent role model to those around her.

Fr. Matthew George – Lake Huron Catholic Family Parishes

Fr. Matthew George

Fr. Matthew George was a consistent presence at St. Boniface School for many years and when the reorganization of the Family of Parishes occurred, he actively worked to make connections with the new school families to support Catholic education. He consistently went over and above his work commitments to make connections between the school, home and parish. Fr. Matthew George walked the talk when it came to being a model of what Jesus calls us to be for students, staff and families. He focused on human dignity and supported the growth of the whole person in the Catholic faith.

Fr. Matthew George had a deep and lasting impact on all he served in the parish and schools connected to the parish. He was passionate about making connections with all and he demonstrated an unwavering commitment to creating a culture of deep care for others and for the earth. As a pastor and associate pastor in the now Lake Huron Catholic Family of Parishes, Fr. Matthew George was respected locally and in the Diocese of London for his leadership in social justice, specifically as a strong supporter of Development and Peace. 

Sean G. McDade – St. Mary’s School, Goderich / St. Peter’s Church, Goderich

Sean G. McDade

Sean McDade is the current principal at St. Mary’s School in Goderich. Sean’s steadfast leadership has ignited the Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board theme of Encounter, Accompany, Transform. Sean provides opportunities to build community and relationships with every family and staff member he encounters.

Sean works actively at St. Mary’s to ensure the school can provide support for the students, families and parish. St. Mary’s hosts food drives every three months and at the request of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Goderich. Sean works actively with both the CWL and the K of C to provide additional support to St. Mary’s families that are in need, including financial assistance, housing and other social services.

Sean is very active within St. Peter’s Parish in Goderich. Sean is a familiar and welcoming face that greets and ushers parishioners to their seats. Currently, Sean is one of the coordinators of the Synod committee at St. Peter’s Goderich. He is facilitating all communication and encouraging parishioners within the community to have their voice heard.