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. Daniel M. Mahoney – Associate Pastor and School Spiritual Director

Fr. Daniel M. Mahoney has lived most of his life in Rhode Island, moving to Wakefield in 1999. He graduated from South Kingstown High School in 2004. He grew up in St. Francis of Assisi Parish. Before entering the seminary, he spent several years working in the restaurant industry. He also spent the 2007-2008 school year serving with N.E.T Ministries, a Catholic missionary organization that shares the gospel with junior high and high school students through retreats. In the fall of 2013, Fr. Mahoney entered the seminary and began his studies at Our Lady of Providence Seminary where he would study for the next 4 years before graduating from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 2017. Bishop Tobin then assigned Fr. Mahoney to theological studies at Saint John’s Seminary in Brighton, Massachusetts where he earned a Master of Divinity and a Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B). Ordained June 5, 2021 by Bishop Tobin, Fr. Mahoney has been assigned to OLM for his first priestly assignment.

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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. 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. Megan Johnson – Kindergarten Assistant

Mrs. Megan Johnson is the teacher’s assistant in our kindergarten classroom. She is a proud graduate of Our Lady of Mercy School and is excited to be here as a member of the staff! Mrs. Johnson first gained experience working with young children as a babysitter for her younger siblings and local families. She has worked with children of all ages for the past six years. She brings patience and joy to the classroom and is passionate about helping children grow and learn. In her free time, Mrs. Johnson enjoys going for nature walks, working out and spending time with family and friends.

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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. Emily Thompson – Third Grade Teacher

Mrs. Emily Thompson is our third grade teacher. A native of New York, Mrs. Thompson graduated from Providence College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Science and a minor in Theology. She received a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Teaching from Boston University. After graduating, she served a volunteer year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Sacramento, California. For the past eight years, she has been teaching in the intermediate grades. Mrs. Thompson taught 4th grade at Atlantis Charter School in Fall River, Massachusetts, and most recently taught 5th grade at St. Pius V School in Providence. She and her husband, Scott, are parents to three young children, and they are parishioners of St. Pius V Church in Providence.

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Web page: Mrs. Thompson – 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

Mrs. Jessica Heaslip – Art Teacher

Mrs. Jessica Heaslip 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

Mr. Ryan Tremblay – Music Teacher

Mr. Ryan Tremblay is an international Catholic singer-songwriter who has been featured on EWTN, CatholicTV, Relevant Radio, and has performed at World Youth Days in Poland, Panama, and as a guest soloist at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City. Mr. Tremblay holds a Bachelor of Music from Rhode Island College, and he has taught at both St. George’s School in Middletown, RI, and Exeter-West Greenwich Senior High School. In addition, he teaches private music lessons to students of all ages. He and his wife Elizabeth are parents to six-year-old triplet sons.

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Web page: coming soon

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

Ms. Rayna Ciano – Academic Support Coordinator

Ms. Ciano holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood & Special Education from Rhode Island College and a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Providence College. With nearly forty years of teaching experience, Ms. Ciano served as a special educator with the Johnston School Department prior to joining the faculty at OLM. There she was nominated to the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers in both 2002 and 2004 and was nominated to be the Thornton Elementary School Teacher of the Year in 1999, 2003, and 2007. Recently retired from the Johnston School Department, she has been a substitute teacher, tutor, and volunteer. Outside of school she enjoys spending time with family, friends, and her three dogs.

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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.

Sister Soledad Simbe Salgado, FAS

Sister Soledad was born in the Philippines and is the fourth of five children.  She joined the Franciscan Apostolic Sisters in 1962. She is now a perpetually professed Sister. She holds B.S and M.A. Degrees in Education and over the years she has done pastoral work, taught religion and served as a principal. She has worked in various diocesan, parish and FAS schools at both the elementary and secondary level in the Philippines and United States.

Sister Soledad arrived in the U.S. in 1988 to serve in the Diocese of Providence at Our Lady of Victory Parish in Woonsocket, becoming a U.S. citizen in 1994. Following her pastoral work at Our Lady of Victory, she then served briefly in the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois before being assigned in 1995 as a religion teacher at St Joseph School in York, Nebraska.  Following her work there, she was assigned to the staff of St. Gregory the Great Seminary in Lincoln, Nebraska until 2001. In 2001 through 2006, Sister took a leave to care for her aging and infirm father. She then served until 2008 at the FAS Motherhouse in the Philippines.

In 2008, she returned to Illinois to work as a member of the staff of the Bishop of Peoria. From 2009 until 2019, she served again as a religion teacher at St. Joseph School in Nebraska. In August 2019, Sister joined the pastoral staff at the Scalabrini Villa Nursing Home, working along with three other FAS Sisters.