Fr. Bernard A. Healey – Pastor

Father Bernard A. Healey was born in Providence, Rhode Island and raised in the Edgewood section of Cranston, where he attended public schools and attended Mass at St. Paul’s Church. He is the youngest of nine children of the late Judge Edward V. Healey, Jr and the late Lillian E. Healey. A 1987 graduate of The Catholic University of America with a Bachelors of Arts in Politics, Fr. Healey completed his seminary and theological studies at the American College, Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium where he earned a Masters of Arts in Religious Studies and a Licentiate in Sacred Theology magna cum laude specializing in the area of Moral Theology from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. He also earned a Licentiate in Canon Law cum laude specializing in the area of church-state relations from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. Fr. Healey was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island by The Most Rev. Louis E. Gelineau on June 24, 1995.  He has served as the Associate Pastor at St. Mary, Star of the Sea, Narragansett and St. Augustine Church in Providence.  He served as Pastor of St. Ambrose Church in Albion from 2003 until 2012. He was appointed the seventeenth Pastor of Our Lady of Mercy Church in East Greenwich in June 2012 by Bishop Thomas J. Tobin. Father also serves as Director of the Rhode Island Catholic Conference and Chaplain to the Rhode Island Capitol Police and the East Greenwich Police Departments.  In September 2014, Father Healey was appointed by Bishop Tobin to serve as the Dean (Vicar Forane) of the South County Deanery (VII).

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Fr. Joshua A. Barrow – Associate Pastor and School Spiritual Director

Rev. Joshua A. Barrow is a native of Warwick where he was educated in public schools and graduated from Pilgrim High School. He grew up in St. Timothy Church in Warwick. After high school, Fr. Barrow entered Our Lady of Providence Seminary and graduated from Providence College with a B.A. in Philosophy.  Bishop Tobin then assigned him for priestly formation and theological studies to the North American College in Rome.  Father was ordained a priest in June 2015 and then returned to Rome for graduate studies.   After completing an S.T.L Degree in Dogmatic Theology at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas this past spring, he was assigned to OLM.

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Mr. David Cote – Business Manager

Mr. David Cote has been associated with Our Lady of Mercy since 1997. He began as a CPA consultant and continued in that capacity for many years. In January 2013, he was named the Parish Business Manager. He continues to provide accounting services and support for several parishes in the Diocese of Providence and he currently serves as the Parish Auditor for St. Augustine’s Church. He is a graduate of Bryant University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree with a Concentration in Accounting. He and his family started the Smithfield High School swim team in 2010 and he coached the boy’s team to a RIIL State Championship in 2014. In recognition of this accomplishment, Mr. Cote was named the 2014 Words Unlimited Larry Gallogly Memorial Award Schoolboy Sports Coach of the Year. Mr. Cote is an avid Boston sports fan and enjoys an occasional round of golf. As of July 2020, he has assumed the accounting functions for the School. He and his wife are the parents of two sons and reside in Greenville, RI.

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Mrs. Bethany Verret – Office Manager and Admissions Coordinator

Mrs. Verret is thrilled to join the OLM Staff in a more consistent manner after nearly four years as a substitute teacher. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in American Studies from Fairfield University and fifteen years experience working in marketing and advertising. When her daughter was in 2nd grade and wanted to participate in the school play and there was no director, Mrs. Verret jumped right in! It was through that experience eight years ago that she realized her love of working with children. She continued as the school play director in East Greenwich Public Schools since then, while also running before- and after-school enrichment programs, and substitute teaching. In her spare time, Mrs. Verret can be found on the sidelines of the tennis or basketball court, cheering on her daughter and son (as well as a few other familiar faces).

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Mrs. Irene Buonaccorsi – Administrative Assistant

Mrs. Irene Buonaccorsi was promoted during the summer of 2015 as the school administrative assistant.  She started at OLM in September 2001 as the teacher’s assistant in the PreSchool program and moved to the office in March of 2010 as the school secretary/administrative assistant.  Mrs. Buonaccorsi completed an Executive Secretary program at Bermuda College before transferring to Johnson and Wales University where she graduated with Bachelor’s Degrees in Finance/Investments and Business Management. She was a Senior Supervisor in the Management Training Program at Bermuda Commercial Bank, Ltd. for 3 years before moving to the U.S.A.  Mrs. Buonaccorsi worked as a supervisor at Fleet National Bank in the Bankcard Accounting, Settlement and General Ledger Accounting departments for 3 years before taking time out of work to enjoy her two children. Outside of work, she enjoys baking and decorating cakes, reading and spending time with family and friends.

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Mrs. Helen Fleury – School Nurse

Mrs. Helen Fleury has served as a Registered Nurse since 2012. She obtained her Associates Degree in Nursing from the Community College of Rhode Island in 2012 and completed her Bachelors in Nursing at Rhode Island College in 2015. Mrs. Fleury has a wide range of nursing experience including medical, surgical, and urgent care. More recently, she has cared for postpartum mothers and babies. Prior to becoming a nurse, Mrs. Fleury earned Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Business Administration from Bryant University and worked for several years in the business sector before discovering her passion for healthcare. Mrs. Fleury and her family are parishioners of Our Lady of Mercy Church. She married her husband Mark here at OLM in 2011, and they are parents to three boys.

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Ms. Shannon Grady – Pre-K Teacher

Ms. Shannon Grady is the Pre-K teacher.  Ms. Grady obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Elementary and Special Education from Providence College. She just recently finished a Catholic volunteer year teaching at the elementary level in Detroit, Michigan. She has experience teaching Pre-K in the Extended School Year program at the Early Learning Center in North Attleboro, Massachusetts. Ms. Grady also has early childhood teaching experience abroad in South Africa. Ms. Grady is a member of Saint Margaret Parish in Rumford and is actively involved in her Catholic faith and identity.  Outside of school, Ms. Grady enjoys singing, dancing, going to the beach, reading, and being outside.

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Web page: Ms. Grady – Pre-Kindergarten

Mrs. Theresa Siani – Pre-K Assistant

Mrs. Theresa Siani is a familiar face at OLM who takes on a new role this year. Since 2019, she has served our school as an aide in the lunchroom and extended day program. She now moves full time into our Pre-K classroom as the assistant teacher. Mrs. Siani loves spending time with children of all ages. Prior to joining our team, she worked in established childcare centers and also did private childcare while raising her four children. Mrs. Siani attends daily Mass at St. Rose and Clement Parish and is a Eucharistic Minister there and at Kent Hospital. When she is not at work she enjoys the outdoors, reading, cooking and hunting for antiques; but her favorite pastime is being with her family and spending time with her amazing granddaughter.

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Mrs. Karen Maguire – Kindergarten Teacher

Mrs. Karen Maguire is the Kindergarten Teacher.   She has been teaching at Our Lady of Mercy for 11 years. She also helps out in Robotics and with the Student Council. Mrs. Maguire graduated from Wheelock College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Visual Arts and a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood. Outside of school she is busy with her three children. You will probably find her attending one of her children’s basketball or soccer games here at OLM.

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Web page: Mrs. Maguire – Kindergarten

Mrs. Deborah Carraccio – Kindergarten Assistant

Mrs. Deborah Carraccio is part of our Kindergarten team.  Prior to arriving at OLM she was a Pre-K. and 1st grade volunteer at Fr. John V. Doyle School where it turned into a full time position.  She worked at Fr. John V. Doyle School for seven years as a teacher’s assistant throughout the school.  Mrs. Carraccio was previously an International Flight Attendant for many years.  She lives on a small farm with her two children, husband and many animal family members.

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Mrs. Denise Palizza – First Grade Teacher/Early Childhood Coordinator

Mrs. Denise Palizza is our First Grade teacher.  She has been teaching at O.L.M. since 2003.  Mrs. Palizza graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Mathematics.  She received her Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from Rhode Island College.  Prior to teaching, she worked in the automobile insurance industry as a data analyst, manager and director. She enjoyed the opportunities and experience her insurance career provided, but left to pursue her passion to teach children.  Outside of school, she enjoys sailing, doing crossword and Sudoko puzzles, and spending time with family and friends.

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Web page: Mrs. Palizza – 1st Grade

Ms. Jean Perretta – Second Grade Teacher

Jean Perretta is the 2nd grade teacher and has been a member of the faculty at Our Lady of Mercy for over twenty years.  She is a graduate of Rhode Island College, having received both a Bachelor degree in Elementary Education/Special Education and a Master’s degree in Learning Disabilities.  She has served at Our Lady of Mercy as Resource, First Grade, Third Grade, Fifth Grade and Kindergarten teacher.  She also worked in an administrative role for two years.

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Web page: Ms. Perretta – 2nd Grade

Mrs. Courtney Anderson – Third Grade Teacher

Mrs. Courtney Anderson is our third grade teacher.  She joined OLM as a 4th Grade teacher in 2015.  Mrs. Anderson has taught 2nd grade at Our Lady of Mercy in Dayton, Ohio and 1st grade at Holy Family Elementary School in Grand Blanc, Michigan.  Mrs. Anderson graduated from Providence College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary and Special Education.  She recently completed her Master’s Degree in Literacy at the University of Dayton, Ohio.  Outside of school, Mrs. Anderson teaches Religious Education at her home parish, St. Michael’s Church in Smithfield.  In her free time she enjoys zumba, crafting, kayaking and the outdoors.

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Web page: Mrs. Anderson – 3rd Grade

Mrs. Cathy Turchetta – Fourth Grade Teacher

Mrs. Cathy Turchetta teaches 4th grade at Our Lady of Mercy. She graduated from Augustana College with a Bachelor’s Degree in both Elementary Education and Psychology. She received a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from National-Louis University. She is a proud member of Phi Beta Kappa and the Mortar Board Honor Societies. The Turchettas are parishioners at OLM where Mrs. Turchetta serves as a Eucharistic Minister. In her free time, Mrs. Turchetta enjoys spending time with her husband and 4 grown children. Her past times include reading, skiing, and playing tennis.

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Web page: Mrs. Turchetta – 4th Grade

Mrs. Jennifer Nygren – Fifth Grade Teacher

Mrs. Jennifer Nygren began teaching fifth grade at Our Lady of Mercy School in 2010.

She received her undergraduate degree from Fairfield University, and her Master of Arts and Teaching in Elementary Education from Roger Williams University.  She is an active member of Saint Gregory the Great Church where she has served as a Eucharistic Minister and religious education teacher.

She enjoys spending time with her husband and three sons.

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Web page: Mrs. Nygren – 5th Grade

Mrs. Kathleen Kerin – Middle School English Teacher

Mrs. Kathleen Kerin joins is a part of the OLM middle school team as an English teacher.  Mrs. Kerin has taught in Catholic grade schools and public secondary schools.  She received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Christendom College and has done graduate work at the Notre Dame Catechetical Institute and Providence College.  She has been a parishioner of Our Lady of Mercy Church since 1995 and has regularly volunteered as a teacher in the Religious Education Program.  She co-chairs our diocesan Days of Evangelization.  Mrs. Kerin and her husband Mark are parents of three grown children.  Mrs. Kerin enjoys reading, swimming, biking and being with her family.

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Web page: Mrs. Kerin

Mr. Michael Kennedy – Middle School History Teacher

I am delighted to continue my career in education with the students and staff of Our Lady of Mercy School. A lifetime New Jersey resident, I enter my fortieth year of service as an educator with you here in Rhode Island. My wife and I have three daughters and nine grandchildren. We have come to the Ocean State to be closer to our family and to avail ourselves of the many benefits and attractions found here. I have served in multiple capacities in education. These include a teacher of English, a teacher of History, a guidance counselor, an academic supervisor, and an administrator. I have a B.A. from Susquehanna University, and M.A.s from Rider University and Rutgers University. Prior to my education career, I proudly served our nation as an officer in the United States Marine Corps. Our Catholic Faith is exceedingly important to me. I view my life and career as coming full circle at OLMS: my most important learning years were those spent as a student in an elementary Catholic school and now I am granted the Gift of coming back to another as a teacher.

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Web page: Mr. Kennedy – Middle School History

Mrs. Karen Kane – Middle School Math Teacher

Mrs. Karen Kane joins the middle school team as the math teacher.  Mrs. Kane has served in a wide variety of leadership, instructional and coaching positions since graduating with a Bachelor of Science from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis.  As a commissioned naval officer, she was a Designated Master Training Specialist at Officer Candidate School in Newport while also coaching the Naval Academy Preparatory School (NAPS) women’s basketball team.  She also served as Admin/Legal Officer at Fleet Surveillance Support Command in Norfolk, VA.  After graduating from RI College with a second bachelor’s degree in education in 2004,      Mrs. Kane taught middle school social studies at Monsignor Clarke Regional Catholic School in Wakefield.  For the past eight years, she has worked as a private SAT/ACT and mathematics tutor, preparing students for all levels of high school and college math.  Mrs. Kane volunteers as a Big Sister, as a member of the Executive Council at San Miguel School in Providence, as President of the Wickford Point Homeowner’s Association and as a mentor in both parochial and public schools   Mrs. Kane and her  husband have been parishioners of OLM for nearly 20 years, and both their adult children graduated from OLM.

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Web page: Coming Soon

Dr. Deborah Husak – Middle School Science Teacher

Dr. Deborah Husak is a part of the OLM middle school team as the science teacher. She earned her undergraduate degree in Biology at Michigan State University and her Medical Doctorate at Wayne State University. After completing her residency in family practice she served for four years as a medical officer in the U.S. Coast Guard where she met her husband, a career officer. After leaving the Coast Guard, Dr. Husak began volunteering and substitute teaching in every school her two children attended and discovered that she sincerely enjoyed and had a talent for teaching. When her husband was assigned to Rhode Island in 2007, they decided to stay and Dr. Husak was able to pursue her love of teaching by attending the University of Rhode Island where she completed her Masters in Secondary Science Education. Dr. Husak sings in her church choir and enjoys reading, hiking and having fun with her family.

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Web page: Dr. Husak-Middle School Science

Mr. Eric Cote – Middle School Theology Teacher

Mr. Eric Cote joins the middle school team as the theology teacher.  Mr. Cote holds a B.S. in Applied Science from Rochester Institute of Technology and a M.A. in Moral Theology from Holy Apostles College and Seminary. He served as a youth minister/ youth group coordinator for the Diocese of Providence and St. Raymond’s Parish in Providence, RI.  He taught Religious Education at St. Eugene’s in Chepachet for nine years and at Our Lady of Good Help in Burrillville, RI for three years. Mr. Cote taught theology to middle school students for eleven years at Mercymount Country Day School in Cumberland, RI and taught computer classes at Fr. Holland Catholic Regional School in Burrillville, RI. He is a member of the Cardinal Newman Society as well as a member of the Human Life Guild of the Diocese of Providence.  Mr. Cote has three adult children and one elementary school child. Mr. Cote and his wife are communicants at Our Lady of Good Help and St. Theresa’s Shrine in Burrillville, RI.

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Web page: Mr. Cote – Middle School Theology

Ms. Jessica Dowling – Art Teacher

Ms. Jessica Dowling holds a Master of Arts in Teaching, Art Education, from Tufts University and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Prior to earning her MA, she taught as a missionary for a small Catholic Parish in Magadan, Russia. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in History and Anthropology from the Franciscan University of Steubenville. When she is not teaching she can be found hanging out with family or friends, hiking, at the beach, or practicing her own artistic craft. She is a parishioner at Saint Francis de Sales in North Kingstown.

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Web page: coming soon

Mrs. Gabrielle McVicker – Librarian

Mrs. Gabrielle McVicker is a native to Rhode Island. She grew up in Warwick and graduated from St. Mary Academy BayView. Upon graduation, Mrs. McVicker attended Colgate University where she studied Biology and Economics and then later went on to earn her Master’s Degree in Library Science at Simmons College. She most recently worked as a reference librarian at New England Institute of Technology and before that worked in the library at The Governor’s Academy in Byfield, Massachusetts. When not at school, Mrs. McVicker can be found running around after her three children, going to the beach, hiking, or reading.

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Web page: coming soon

Ms. Kathryn Hollowell – Music Teacher/Band Director

Kathryn Hollowell is a recent graduate of the University of Rhode Island with Bachelor’s Degrees in both Music Education and Psychology. She is primarily a saxophonist with a strong woodwind background. She has studied conducting with Dr. Gene Pollart at URI and has conducted multiple pieces with the URI Wind Ensemble. Kathryn is a member of the Rhode Island Recording Ensemble and has played with two URI saxophone quartets as part of the College Quartet Series at the Navy Band International Saxophone Symposium in 2015 and 2018. She has also participated in the Jamaica Field Service Project during the summer of 2017, providing music instruction in many rural schools.

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Web page: Ms. Hollowell – Music/Band

Mr. David T. Stefanik- Physical Education Teacher

Mr. David T. Stefanik is the Health and Physical Education teacher. He has been teaching at OLM School since 2010. Mr. Stefanik graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health and Physical Education. He has completed his Master’s Degree in Guidance from Providence College. He has served on the board of directors for the Woonsocket North Stars Hockey Program, East Woonsocket Little League Program, and the Woonsocket Parks and Recreation Program. He has a playfield that he helped create, named in his honor, at the Leo A. Savoie Elementary School in Woonsocket.

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Web page: Mr. Stefanik – Physical Education

Mrs. Katherine Franklin – Spanish Teacher

Mrs. Katherine Franklin joins the OLM Faculty as the Spanish teacher for grades PreK – 8.  Mrs. Franklin graduated from Brandeis University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in French, and is certified in the state of RI to teach Spanish and French.  She has studied at the Centro de Lengua y Comunicacion Social in Cuernavaca, Mexico, and at the Institute for American Universities in Aix-en-Provence, France.  Mrs. Franklin has taught Spanish at all grade levels in both parochial and public schools in RI.  In her spare time she loves reading mystery novels, watching movies, eating Mexican food, and bicycling with her husband and daughter along the state’s many beautiful bike paths.

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Web page: Mrs. Franklin – Spanish

Mrs. Susanne Racca – Technology Teacher

Mrs. Susanne Racca joins the OLM Faculty as the Technology teacher for grades K – 8. Mrs. Racca has been teaching Computer Technology at St. Kevin School since 2012.  Mrs. Racca also taught computers at Overbrook Academy for thirteen years.  Prior to her teaching career, she was employed in the Community College of Rhode Island’s Public Relations Office for 20 years and has served as an adjunct faculty member in both CCRI’s Computer Studies and Office Technology Departments.  She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Rhode Island.  Mrs. Racca lives in Warwick with her husband and has two daughters in college.

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Web page: Mrs. Racca – Technology

Mrs. Cheryl Xavier – Academic Support Coordinator

Mrs. Cheryl Xavier is the Academic Support Coordinator.  Mrs. Xavier received her undergraduate degree from Providence College and a Masters of Arts in Teaching for the University of Rhode Island.  For 26 years, she was a teacher in the Narragansett School district working with students from Kindergarten through 12th grade in the areas of both Special and Regular Education.  In addition, she held leadership positions as Grade Level/Department chairs and the district’s Mentor Coordinator for new teachers in Narragansett.  She is a member of St. Francis Parish and has served as an Eucharistic Minister of Holy Communion and Religious Education teacher.  Mrs. Xavier lives in Wakefield and enjoys spending time with her family, exercising, cooking, and floral arrangement.

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Mrs. Patricia DiPrete – OLM School/Little Saints & Scholars Extended Care Aide

Mrs. Patricia DiPrete is a part of our Little Saints & Scholars Extended Care team. She has been a Kindergarten and Extended Day Aide at Our Lady of Mercy School since 2010. Mrs. DiPrete graduated from East Greenwich High School and studied Early Childhood Education at the Community College of Rhode Island. She owned her own daycare, providing child care for working families while her children were young. Prior to arriving at OLM, Mrs. DiPrete worked with Pre-K and Kindergarten children at Joyful Noise Inc. for nineteen years. She has been a dedicated child care professional for over thirty six years. Mrs. DiPrete enjoys spending time with all the students at OLM and adds that “school time is the best part of her day”.

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Sister Lourdes de Leon, FAS

Sister Lourdes de Leon, FAS was born in the Philippines. She received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 1987 from St. Anthony’s College in the Philippines. She has been in mission at the Diocese of Providence since 1989. She became a perpetually professed member of the Franciscan Apostolic Sisters on May 18, 1998.   Sr. Lourdes will always be happy and willing to be at the service of every person in the Parish community as God’s humble servant.

Sister Emma R. Salvador, FAS

Sr. Emma R. Salvador, FAS was born in Cagayan Valley in the Philippines in 1971.  She grew up in St. Joseph the Worker Parish.  She was educated at St. Paul University Tuguegarao, Cagayan in Dietetic Technology (1990) and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education from St. Anthony’s College Cagayan Valley.  Sr. Emma joined the Franciscan Apostolic Sisters in November 1991 and became a Perpetually Professed member of the FAS on May 18, 2003.  She came to serve in the USA in 1994 -1995.  She went back to the Philippines to finish her formation.  From 1996 through 2014 she served in different missions and places responding to the call to be all, to all, for every need, for the greater glory of God.  In 2014 Sr. Emma was assigned to Precious Blood Parish in Woonsocket until September 2015 when she joined the Our Lady of Mercy family where she enjoys spending time with the children at lunch and during the Little Saints and Scholars after school program.