As two key members of his curia are preparing to leave the Diocese on June 30, Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., offered the following statements:
The day I have dreaded has arrived: Tony Mingarino, Chancellor, Chief Financial and Administrative Officer of the Diocese of Trenton, is about to retire.
I have often said that Tony is the reason I can sleep at night!
In all the positions I have been fortunate enough to hold over these many years as a priest and, now, bishop, I have never experienced a co-worker as faithful, competent and generous as Tony Mingarino.
For the past almost 14 years, the Diocese of Trenton has benefitted greatly from his broad financial experience and acumen, his steady hand, his wise advice and selfless stewardship of diocesan resources. No task was too big or too small for his capable hands. He has an uncanny ability to anticipate diocesan needs, even before they surfaced!
Pastors, parish priests and business administrators alike are all unanimous in their appreciation for his ready accessibility and guidance. Their questions were never a burden to him but, rather, an opportunity to help and serve. He made others his priority. Always a gentleman and consummate professional, Tony looked and acted the part because he was and is the “real deal.”
It did not take long to realize where he drew his strength and character: he prayed faithfully at daily Mass in the Chancery and he spoke lovingly of his family. Are there greater values in any man’s life? Tony Mingarino never lost an awareness of the presence of God in his life and work. And he treated his co-workers as family. No bishop, no Chancery, no Diocese could ask for more.
It has been said that “the mirror of a man’s heart is his actions.” How blessed has the Diocese of Trenton been to be that mirror for Tony Mingarino. May every joy and blessing be his and his family’s in the years ahead! Thanks, Tony.
Daughter Of Charity Sister Joanne Dress
As a member of a religious community, I have spent the last twenty years living and working apart from the congregation to which I belong. That’s just the way things worked out in God’s plan.
In my years as Bishop of Trenton, however, God offered me a daily reminder of the charism of St. Vincent de Paul in the person of Sister Joanne Dress, a Daughter of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, the sister congregation to the Vincentian community. She and her superiors accepted my invitation to her to join the Diocese of Trenton in its outreach to and coordination of its Catholic Social Services as Executive Director.
Single-handedly, she turned an “idea” into a reality that has influenced and impacted countless lives throughout the four counties. With characteristic generosity and energy, she set her shoulder to the task of inspiring her colleagues in Catholic Charities Diocese of Trenton, Mt. Carmel Guild, Mercer County CYO, Collier Youth Services, Diocese of Trenton’s St. Vincent de Paul Societies and numerous parish-based charitable organizations and Catholic agencies with the heart of St. Vincent de Paul and St. Louise de Marillac.
Sister Joanne went about her work quietly but her actions never went unnoticed. She told me once that “all I ever wanted to do was serve the poor.” And serve she did! As Delegate of the Bishop, Sister Joanne brought insight and wisdom to many boards of directors in ways that I never could do on my own. As a member of the Diocesan Curia, Sister Joanne gave voice to Diocesan social concerns in discussions about the needs of the poor and marginalized. She is respected and admired by pastors, priests, Chancery staff, religious, social workers and the needy all around the Diocese.
Little did she know the path that lay ahead of her when she said yes to my hope-filled invitation. Her shoes will not be easily filled nor will her undaunted spirit, easy smile and twinkling Irish eyes. But she leaves behind her a strong model of Catholic social service upon which the Diocese can and will build.
For that, we are all in her debt.
God’s blessing and St. Vincent’s charism go with you, Sister. Thank you.