Parish Staff

Jean O’Dowd, Parish Business Manager

Jean is a lifelong resident of Cranford, where she lives with her husband Tom and four children. She has her Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey. Early in her career, Jean worked as an accountant and as a corporate software instructor. She started working as a parish business manager at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Westfield, New Jersey. In 2009 she began working at St. Michael’s. As a parish business manager, Jean is involved in decision making and reporting on financial matters, personnel management and the development and safeguarding of church assets. If you have questions regarding donations, memorials or bequests contact Jean at the parish office.

Mary Jo Sipe, Parish Secretary

Mary Jo was a St. Michael’s Church parishioner from 1989 until she moved to Millington, New Jersey in 2008 with her husband Doug and her 3 children. She started working as Parish Secretary at St. Michael’s in October 2007. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from University of St. La Salle in Bacolod City, Philippines. She moved from the Philippines to New York to study Fashion Design in 1982. Prior to working at St. Michael’s, Mary Jo has had jobs in retail as an Assistant Buyer, a law firm as a Human Resource Assistant, a Real Estate Stager for an interior design company and an Office Manager for a CPA company. Please contact Mary Jo at the Parish Center if you want to schedule a Baptism or Wedding or questions about funeral mass arrangements. You can also contact her if you have any changes in your status, address, for parishioner verification letters and copies of your Sacramental Records.

Tiago Rodrigues, Supervisor of Maintenance

My name is Tiago. I was born in Lisbon, Portugal, but raised here in Union since I was 2 years old. I first began at St Michael’s Church when I graduated from Union High School in 1998. I have always worked for both the school and church together. I was a CCD teacher at Our Lady of Fatima church in Elizabeth in 1999 for about 6 years, where I was also the Assistant Leader of the CYO. I am certified with my Black Seal license to operate and maintain boilers and furnaces. I am also trained in low level asbestos treatment. I have many skills that I put to good use here at the church every day. I’ve learned a lot working here for almost 2 decades, and I enjoy learning more each day.

Rebekah Scicolone, Principal

Rebekah graduated from Kean University in 2007 with BA in Early Childhood & Elementary Education and began teaching kindergarten at St. Michael Parish School in 2007. In 2013, she had the opportunity to intern as the assistant principal. During this time, she fell in love with administration and went back to Seton Hall to obtain her MA in Educational Leadership, Policy and Management. In 2018, Rebekah became principal of St. Michael Parish School. As of a product of Catholic Education, she is a firm believer in the importance of teaching our children in a faith-based environment. St. Michael School serves over 350 children and Rebekah is honored to be part of this great mission!

Clare Andriola, Pastoral Associate for Religious Education

Clare has been a parishioner of St. Michael’s for more than 30 years.  She is married to her husband, Derrick, for 45 years. They resided in Union for 30 years where they raised three sons – Michael (Vanessa), David (Nicole) and Steven (Amanda). They relocated to Mountainside in 2007 to care for Clare’s mom. They are proud grandparents to Dominic, Grace, Giuliana, Shane and Milania. In December 2018, Clare retired as Executive Assistant to the General Counsel at Merck after 20 years of service. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Kean University. Clare has been a catechist at St. Michael’s for over 25 years. The Knights of Columbus named her Catechist of the Year in 2018. She has been a volunteer at Children’s Specialized Hospital in Mountainside during open recreation for the children in the Long-Term Care Unit since 2011. She had recently joined the HUGS ministry and the Women’s Bowling League for St. Michael’s. Clare joined the Religious Education staff in August 2020 where she will be responsible for the religious formation program for the Parish from Sacramental preparation – 1st Reconciliation through 1st Eucharist – through 8th grade. She will also participate in the Parish Adult Faith Formation.

Lois Scanio, Religious Education Assistant

Lois has been a parishioner for over 40 years. She is married to husband Richard for 52 years. They live in Union and have raised 3 children, Michael (Shannon), Karen, Thomas (Jennifer). They have 3 grandsons —Joseph, Thomas and T.J. Lois retired in 2012 from Union High School as a secretary in the UHS Supervisor’s office. She has been active in St. Michael’s as a Eucharistic Minister, Pre-Cana Team Member and Liturgy Committee. Lois joined the Religious Education Office in 2012 as Coordinator of the Religious Education Home-Based Program. She also assists Mrs. Andriola in the Religious Education Office.

Cristina Manochio, Pastoral Associate for Youth Ministry

Cristina has been a parishioner of St. Michael’s for her entire life and has made all of her sacraments there. She is also a resident of the township of Union, and has gone through the Union Public School System. She graduated from Rutgers University with a Bachelors of Science in Psychology and Criminal Justice and has a Masters in Educational Psychology from Kean University. She is expected to graduate from Kean University in May 2021 with a Professional Diploma in School Psychology. Cristina has recently taken over the CYO and Confirmation Program, which focuses on faith formation for teenagers from 9th-12th grade. She has extremely close ties with the program, as she was a very involved member of CYO during her high school years and hasn’t left since. After she graduated high school, she continued to volunteer as a young adult helper and was a Youth Ministry Assistant for the last 3 years. She has also been a catechist for the past 7 years, teaching the 5th grade about the seven sacraments with her mother. Cristina looks forward to continuing CYO in the spirit of her mentor, friend and predecessor, Phil Matrale, whom she loved and admired greatly. Her vision is to keep CYO a safe haven for the teenagers and young adults of the community, where all are welcome to come share and learn about their faith.

Peter Petrecca, Director of Liturgical Music

Peter Petrecca graduated from Montclair State College with a BA in Comprehensive Business Education. Upon graduation, he was a business education teacher at Kearny High School for 32 years. He imparted marketable, personal, and social skills to students of all grade levels as he guided them toward their endeavors. During his college education, he began studying liturgy and organ under the tutoring of his parish priests, nuns, and other accomplished musicians.  After 21 years of dedication and service to his Italian parish of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Newark, he contemplated and realized music ministry’s calling. After leaving his parish, St. Michael the Archangel of Union welcomed him as their music director. Education and the sensitivity to musical, liturgical, and pastoral judgments have been important ingredients to develop a well-balanced ministry. All parishioners are encouraged to share their God-given talents by training them as cantors, choir members, and instrumentalists. As a parishioner and music director for the past 28 years, worship music at St. Michael’s unified, multi-cultural parish family continues to be a powerful expression of prayer.

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