The Parish Pastoral Council is a consultative body whose primary role is to advise the Pastor in matters such as identifying and providing direction for the spiritual life, ministry priorities, broad goals, strategic planning, and policy-making of a parish.
View the Parish Pastoral Council Mission/Purpose Statement
View the Parish Pastoral Council Mission/Purpose Statement
Pastoral Council Members
SHEILA HEBEIN, CHAIR
My husband, Peter, and I have been members of St. Nicholas Parish for over 40 years. For more than 25 years, our son, Chris, who has Down syndrome, has been an altar server and he has received encouragement and nurturing through this ministry. In 2013 I served on the Transformation Steering Committee and also on the Implementation Team. I served on the Inclusion Committee for many years – one of our major accomplishments was getting the ramp built for the church. Later came the elevator for the social hall and accessible washrooms and a signer for the 9 o’clock Mass. Women in the Diaconate was a great group to work with, as is St. Nick’s List. Throughout the years, St. Nick’s ministries have brought challenges and rewards. | I worked as Executive Director of the National Association for Down Syndrome for over 30 years. Working with children and adults with Down syndrome and their families brought me great joy and many blessings. Since retiring I am happy that I now have the time to say, “Yes” to St. Nicholas. This is my second year on the PPC and I look forward to getting to know more St. Nicholas parishioners and helping them find a nurturing, welcoming community.
BETSY QUINN, VICE-CHAIR
Betsy Quinn is the Drama Teacher and Arts Department Chair at Haven Middle School. She is also the Chair of Evanston/Skokie School District 65 Drama Department. Betsy is a Past President of the American Alliance for Theatre and Education and currently serves on the board in an ex-officio position. She also serves on the board of the Children’s Theatre Foundation of America and the Alumni Board of the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame. In addition to her role on the St. Nicholas Church Parish Pastoral Council, she serves on the Youth Formation Team. She was the Co-chair of the Theatre Writing Team for the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards and served as a writer for the Partnership for 21st Century Skills. Betsy has taught and directed in the Department of Theatre at Northwestern University. | Betsy has a M.F.A. in Child Drama from Arizona State University, a M.A. in Educational Administration from Northeastern Illinois University and a Master of Nonprofit Administration from the University of Notre Dame. She graduated with a BA in Communication and Theatre from St. Mary's College in Notre Dame, IN. She was the 1997 recipient of the Creative Drama Award from The American Alliance for Theatre and Education and was awarded the 2010 Creative Dramatics Award from the Illinois Theatre Association. In 2013, she received the award of honor from the Illinois Theatre Association. During the summer of 2011, she was honored by AATE with the creation of the Betsy Quinn Scholarship Initiative.
Nora and her husband Tony have been parishioners at St Nicholas since 2004. They have three children: Hannah (6), Johnny (4) and Noah (2). Nora has been a Children's Liturgy of the Word leader for many years and will be newly minted as a catechist for the SCORE program during the 2017-2018 school year. Nora is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and worked for many years at Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, a residential home in Chicago for at-risk children. She's currently enjoying time at home with her little ones as a stay-at-home mom. Nora got her MSW from the University of Illinois at Chicago, but her true love lies with the Irish as she earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame.
Cynthia Judge joined St. Nicholas Parish in 2003. This is her first year on the Parish Pastoral Council. Cynthia was a SCORE teacher for ten years and an active parent volunteer at Pope John XXIII School, co-chairing Market Day for four years and helping with Arts Day. Cynthia was part of the Parish Transformation Process, chaired the School Committee, helped coordinate the Canonization Mass for Saint John XXIII and is currently working on the Implementation Team. She is a lector and a Eucharistic Minister. Cynthia is an actor and Speaker Coach and is married to Brad Armacost. They are the proud parents of Evan, a student at Boston University.
My name is Arturo Medina. I am a married, and have two children. I work for S & C Electric Company. I enjoy time with my family, and love to travel. My family and I have been members of the St. Nicholas parish/community for a couple of years and we enjoy participating and supporting activities held here. We feel at home here with the community.
I have been involved with youth and work actively with the Youth Board. I have helped manage traffic in the parking lot and I help in the parish anywhere I am needed. I am now serving on the Parish Pastoral Council.
Hello! I am Suzanne Lefevre and have been a parishioner at St. Nicholas since my husband, Tom Lenz, and I moved to Evanston in 1989. In the years since then we have raised three sons who are now young adults in their 20's. My participation in parish life has included being a member of the Baptismal preparation team, serving as a 5th grade SCORE catechist, a Eucharistic Minister, and seven years on the parish staff as Business Manager. My professional life has included many years working in finance, accounting, and consulting. Currently, I am responsible for finance and operations at Regina Dominican High School in Wilmette. In my spare time I enjoy a challenging crossword puzzle and reading with a monthly book club. It is a wonderful honor to be serving on the Pastoral Council.
JOSE JUAN MORENO
Hello, my name is Jose J. Moreno; I have been a parishioner starting at Ascension Church and leading me to St. Nick’s in 1991. I have gotten involved at the church quite a bit. I am the Coordinator of the Spanish Lectors and starting this year I am also a member of the Parish Pastoral Council. I’m an active member of the Sharing Fest Committee. To this day I live in Gurnee but I can always be found every Sunday at the 1 o’clock Mass. I am married to Maria S. Moreno – she is involved and you may have seen her at church as well. I am a father of 3 kids: my oldest, Natalia is a freshman at DePaul University, a son Oscar is a junior in high school and my youngest daughter Sofia is a 3rd grader. I am always ready to serve and will be more than happy to answer any questions to anyone and everyone who may have a question.
I joined St. Nick's in 2009 when our family moved to Evanston. My wife, Ellen, and I searched for a spiritual home that was welcoming, diverse, and committed to social justice, and I'm grateful to be inspired toward these ideals every weekend. I've served the parish as a Eucharistic Minister, Nursery Volunteer, and Lector at 9 A.M. Mass, and at other seasonal events (Christmas Tree Sale, Holy Thursday foot washing, Rummage Sale). This is my first year on the Pastoral Council. At Nick's, I leave Mass filled with gratitude for fellow parishioners whose stories, struggles, and compassion inspire me to greater participation and service. During the week, I teach English at New Trier High School. I live in south Evanston with my wife Ellen (a social worker at Evanston Hospital), and two sons, Ian (an 8th grader at Nichols Middle School) and Zack (a 5th grader at Washington Elementary).
Yvonne Smith joined St. Nicholas Parish in 1994 after moving with her family from South Orange, N.J. She became actively involved in the parish as a Eucharistic minister. Her two younger children were enrolled in religious education classes and prepared for confirmation. Yvonne was a member of the Parish Transformation Team. After the transformation process she joined the Mass Schedule committee, which investigated ways to include a second Spanish language mass to the weekend mass schedule. She was an active member of Evanston Area Black Catholics, founded by our deceased sister in Christ, Margo Butler. Yvonne continues to lead this group, with a primary focus on fellowship, ReLent prayer group and Kwanzaa Mass. She is a board member of People For A Safer Society which advocates for sensible gun laws in Illinois. | Yvonne is a retired Chicago Public Schools teacher after teaching in Chicagoland and New Jersey for over twenty-five years. She is a National Board Certified Teacher who earned her bachelor degree from State University of New York at Stony Brook and Masters in Mathematics Education at the Illinois Institute of Technology. She was Mathematics Department Chair at Northside College Preparatory High School and served on the leadership team at Northside. | She lives in Skokie and has three adult children, Felicia, Celia and Michael, and two grandchildren Nathaniel and Lillian.
JUAN JOSE VELSACO
As many other immigrants, my family visited a number of parishes to listen and follow God. During this journey, we visited Saint Nicholas Parish and loved the welcome and attention we received. My wife Marisol, and I are coming from two Catholic traditional families, but the renovation non traditional rites were well accepted by our parents and grandparents when they visited us some years ago.
This was the sign we were waiting for to adopt Saint Nicholas as our new home. Our daughters Kimberly and Johanna attended their religious education here at Saint Nicholas to receive their First Communion. Both of them are altar servers at 1:00 PM Mass. In addition, I was invited to be part of the Lectors Ministry and I also serve on the Parish Pastoral Council.
PPC Meeting Minutes