Priest Deacon Staff (Revised on September 1st 2017)
Father Bao Thai – Pastor
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 14
Father Bao Thai was born into a non-baptized family in 1970 in Saigon, South of Vietnam. Through an incredible series of events, he and his entire family converted to Catholicism nine years later on the feast day of the Solemnity of Our Lady’s Assumption, 8/15/1979.
After earning a B.Sc. in Computer Science from Saigon University (May 1992) and teaching at a high school for an academic year, he left Vietnam for Orange County in July 1993. In August 1995, he answered God’s calling and a yearning desire. He broke new ground when he entered Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon, where he obtained a B.A. in Philosophy (May 1998), and he continued on to obtain his M.Div. and M.A. in Spiritual Theology (St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, May 2003), as well as his Licentiate of Sacred Theology (S.T.L.) in Spirituality (The Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas – the Angelicum in Rome, June 2009).
Grounded in his faith, learning, and hard work, Father Bao has enthusiastically served God’s people. After his ordination to the priesthood of Jesus Christ at St. Columban on June 7, 2003, he has served at San Francisco Solano, St. Anthony Claret, Holy Family Cathedral and Our Lady of La Vang. He has come to St. Cecilia since July 1, 2015. On Sunday, November 19, 2017, Bishop Kevin Vann installed Fr. Bao as the 7th pastor of St. Cecilia Church and School.
Father Ismael Silva – Parochial Vicar
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 15
Father Nicolaus Thai – Parochial Vicar
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 31
Greeting Words from Fr. Nicolaus:
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In my continued gratitude to God for the gift of Priesthood, I joyful introduce myself to you as your new Parochial Vicar, starting July 1st, 2017! I also would like to express my thankfulness to Bishop Vann for his appointment and to Fr. Bao Thai, our pastor, for his generosity in accepting me, a new priest, and for his trust in having me as his new Parochial Vicar.
My name is Fr. Nicolaus Thai, a priest of our Diocese of Orange. I was born in 1984 in Saigon. I was baptized on March 11th, 1984 at Bac Ha Catholic Church, my home parish in the archdiocese of Saigon. It was at this spiritual home where I received the sacraments of Baptism, First Holy Communion, and Confirmation. In addition, I was also very involved in Eucharistic Youth Movement and, especially, was an altar server for quite a long time. In the hindsight, it was during these years in serving at the altar during Holy Mass that God planted in me the seed of the vocation to the Catholic priesthood.
My family and I immigrated to the United States of America in 2001 and settled in Fountain Valley. I then attended Los Amigos High School, Orange Coast College, Cal Poly Pomona, and Cal State Long Beach. With many prayers and the support from family and friends, I applied to our Diocese of Orange. I entered St. Patrick’s Seminary and University in Menlo Park in August 2009 as a seminarian of our diocese and was enrolled in the Pre-Theology Program. Having finished this program in 2011, our Bishop Emeritus, Bishop Tod Brown, sent me to the Pontifical North American College in Rome for my theological formation. I attended lectures at the Pontifical Gregorian University, where I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) in 2014. Having completed my Pastoral Year at Santa Clara de Asis, Bishop Kevin Vann ordained me to the order of Transitional Deacon on June 27th, 2015. I then returned to Rome to begin my graduate theological studies. After graduating from the Pontifical North American College (’16), Bishop Vann ordained me to the order of Priesthood on June 11th, 2016 during the Jubilee year of Mercy. After my ordination to the Priesthood I returned to Rome again for one more academic year to complete my graduate studies in theology and earned a Licentiate (equivalent to a Master’s degree) in Sacred Theology (S.T.L.) in June 22th, 2017.
Since St. Cecilia’s parish is my first pastoral assignment as a priest, there will be a lot of learning and trainings. Therefore, please remember me in your prayers and please be assured that you are in mine.
May God bless you always!
Deacon Dong Ngo
Deacon Dong Ngo was born on June 14 in Hai Phong, North Vietnam. At six years old, his family moved to Saigon, South Vietnam. After graduating from Phu Tho Technology School and Saigon Law School, he began working as a mechanical engineer for Shell Oil Company and later for Great Ocean Company until the fall of Saigon in 1975. At that point he fled from Vietnam to the United States with his father, two brothers and two sisters. While in the States, he returned to school to obtain another degree, graduating with a BSEE from California State Fullerton University 1984. His career then began at Boeing Company as a Sr. Engineer until 1991. Following this he ventured into several businesses of his own, finally settling comfortably as a franchisee of 7- Eleven, Inc.. He is married to Thuy K. Dang and has three children. He has been serving on the Vietnamese Community Council at St. Cecilia church for more than twenty years. In 2001, Father Timothy McCarthy, Pastor of St. Cecilia’s parish, sent him to the diaconate program. After four years of studying and spiritual formation, Bishop Tod Brown ordained him a deacon on April 30, 2005.
Deacon Rafael Romero
Deacon Bill Weeks – Business Services Manager
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 12
Greeting Words from Deacon Bill:
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
God’s love be with each of you this beautiful weekend!
On behalf of my wife, Carrie and our son, Brendan Michael, I wish to thank you for welcoming us into this wonderful community here at St. Cecilia’s. Over the past few months, we have experienced God’s most joyous spirit alive and well in each of you. We have witnessed how God created you in His likeness and image calling you to be His lights in the world today. May you continue to transform it for the greater glory of His Holy name!
Just a little about myself and our family. I was born and raised in the small fishing community of San Pedro near the Port of Los Angeles. I am the youngest of five children – four of which were girls. I am the product of Catholic education having graduated from Loyola Marymount University where I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, as well as my Masters of Art Degree in Education. I currently hold a teaching credential here in the State of California, including several professional certifications in Human Resource Management and Accounting. I moved to Orange County in the summer of 2002 and met the love of my life, Carrie, in 2003. We entered into the bonds of holy matrimony in 2004 praising God for uniting us in His love. In 2008, we received the gift of Brendan Michael who now keeps us very busy and on our toes. We have two more (2) loves – Penny ( a Jack Russell Terrier) and Gadget ( a Beagle ) – who also give us a lot joy and laughter. We have been very active in our faith having served in such ministries as Cursillo, Marriage Preparation, Eucharistic ministry, Sacristy Ministry, Jail Ministry, Lector Ministry and have been active members of our local church’s Pastoral & Finance Councils. We are excited to now be a part of this very dynamic parish and cannot wait to become more involved in parish life with each of you!
Today, Jesus, is asking us to view life from various vantage points and to learn from them. He is calling us to treat each other as we would want to be treated – living the Golden Rule. He is our role model on how to love God and love our neighbor. He tells us in the Acts of the Apostles that “there is more happiness in giving than receiving.”
There is no doubt that in today’s world we are busy. Sometimes we are so busy that we forget to focus on that which is most important – loving each other. I know that I forget far too often than I want to admit. But, it’s not too late. We can begin today taking small steps to express God’s love through caring for and sharing with our neighbor. Maybe it can be praying as a family for the needs of others; visiting someone who is sick or homebound; making a meal for someone who needs it the most; providing clothing or shelter to someone who has none or even just being a friend to someone during a difficulty time. Just maybe, by being DOERS of the Lord, we can change our small corner of the world here in Orange County and allow God’s love to abound everywhere. My brothers and sisters, GIVE SO THAT YOU MIGHT LIVE IN HIM ALWAYS!
Your humble servant in Christ,
Deacon Bill Weeks
Mrs. Mary Alvarado, a native Californian, was educated in the Catholic scrhool system. She is a graduate of Sacred Heart School in Covina, St. Lucy’s Priory High School in Glendora, and Boston College in Massachusetts. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Special Education from Boston College and a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from Cal Poly Pomona. Mrs. Alvarado was a teacher in Catholic schools for eighteen years before taking on administrative positions as Assistant Principal, Associate Principal, and Principal. She has worked in the Diocese of Orange since 1995 and became principal of St. Cecilia School in July 2006.
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 13
Kathy was born in Iowa, grew up in Anaheim and attended St. Boniface Parish until she moved with her family to Dana Point in 1967. She was one of the early members of St. Edward the Confessor Catholic Church and volunteered in many capacities while raising her children. Kathy has been working in accounting for 25 years, 12 years of which have been for the Diocese of Orange. She has served as the Assistant to the Business Manager at St. Cecilia Church for the past 6 years. Kathy is the proud Mother and Grandmother to 4 children (and 4 spouses) and 13 Grandchildren.
Rose Schiller – Parish Secretary
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 26
I was born in Bogota, Colombia the third of 8 children. Moved to California in 1967. I went to school in the Costa Mesa area, also attended Orange Coast College. Worked for Mitsubishi Electronic in the Quality Control Department 1977-81 left and came back 1983 to 1989- worked in the Payroll Department. I married Andy a wonderful man and have two beautiful children. We moved to the Tustin area and have been blessed to work St. Cecilia since 1992.
Chakie De Guzman – Office Receptionist
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext 10
Carmel Sanchez – Office Receptionist
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext 10
Sr. Francesca Tran, LHC –
HS Confirmation Coordinator & Vietnamese Children Faith Formation Coordinator (Viet CFF)
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 11
I am a member of the Lovers of the Holy Cross Sisters of Los Angeles since 1986 and this past summer 2014 marked my 25th Anniversary as a Vowed Religious in my Community. Thank God for choosing me – unworthy sinner to be His “vesselof grace” and my response is to have Him for life…J! I am the second child of nine siblings and the oldest girl in my family. We came to the USA in December 1975 with the first group of Vietnamese refugees called the “Boat People”. Thank God for our life here in America: the land full of milk and honey and freedom. I like to pray, eat, read, sleep and travel to holy places. I want to teach our young people about Jesus – God and their purpose in life and hoping one day they will come to know, to love and to serve Him. Faith formation for children and youth is one of my Community’s Charisms and we are sent out on this mission. I am looking forward to spread God’s Kingdom among our children and journeying with everyone here at St. Cecilia – my new “nest”of God’s Vineyard…J! May our Lord Jesus, Mother Mary, St. Joseph and St. Cecilia bless us and make us grow more deeply in love of God and one another.
Tony Macias –
English Children Faith Formation Coordinator (Eng CFF)
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 27
Evelyn Carrasco –
Spanish Children Faith Formation Coordinator ( Spa CFF )
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 19
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 10
Conor truly is a “Child of Fatima.” When Conor was 17 years old and strung out on drugs, Conor’s father, Chris Martin, came across an ad in a Servite High School football program. It promoted Our Lady of Fatima’s request for the Five First Saturdays Devotion. In desperation to save his son, Chris turned to our Heavenly Mother and became devoted to Our Lady through the Five First Saturdays Devotion. Just a few days after Chris completed his first devotion, Conor got on the right track. Conor moved away with his father from Southern California to Reno, Nevada. Within 90 days of sobriety, Conor was back at Mass and carrying the football as a running back for Reno High School. Conor helped to lead his team to a championship season, winning the 2003 Nevada 4A High School Football State Championship. By the time Conor was 20 years old, he had become unimaginably devoted to Our Blessed Mother and to the Holy Eucharist. In the last 11 years, Conor (31 years old) has been on fire in faith! Conor has been involved with various ministries in the past decade, including First Communion preparation, Confirmation preparation, at-risk youth outreach, and giving love and hospitality toward the wandering and abandoned. He has also served as a high school football coach, an international fundraiser for promoting Marian devotion, a sought-after public speaker, and a Marian ministry founder. Conor graduated with Honors from Mount Angel Seminary in Saint Benedict, Oregon with his Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy in 2012.
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 10
With God’s grace, my wife and I have been blessed with our 6 year old son. I have served our country as a soldier in the US Army from 1983-1989 leaving with an honorable discharge. I have served our Lord Jesus for most of my life through ministry. I have had the privilege of ministering with Adolescents and Young Adults for more than 30 years. Currently, I am the Executive Director of Immaculata Ministries in Corona, CA, The High School Youth Minister here at St. Cecilia Catholic Church and a retreat coordinator/director. I am a fourth degree Knight with the Knights of Columbus, and a member of the St. Martin de Porres Yorba Linda Council. I was a Capuchin Franciscan Brother for 13 years and learned the importance of prayer life, being a member of a faith community and Brotherhood. I have a degree in Religious Studies and I am certified as a Youth and Young Adult Minister as well as a Liturgical Coordinator. Through the book “33 Days of Morning Glory” by Fr. Michael Gaitley, I have re-consecrated my life to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the merciful Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ through the direction of St. Maximilian Kolbe, St. Louie De Montfort, St. John Paul II and St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Throughout my ministerial life, I have gained valuable life lessons and an understanding of the spiritual and social needs of the youth as well as people of all ages. I am truly blessed and I thank God every day for my family, friends, vocation, and ministry.
Telephone: 714-544-3250, Ext. 10
I was born in Santa Ana, one of (5) children. Our family home was in North Tustin. I attended grade schools and Foothill High school in Tustin. In 1981, I came to St. Cecilia as a part-time worker in maintenance. I began working full-time the next year and have continued my employment in that department.