DETROIT — Seven men will kneel before Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron, who will lay his hands upon them and ordain them as permanent deacons of the Church on Saturday, Oct. 6.
As married men of faith called to serve the Church, all seven will take up a second vocation in their lives. With their wives by their side, Donald Esler, Greg Willoughby, Hector Anaya-Bustos, Jeff Loeb, Leo Maciolek, Regis Buckley and Tom Caporuscio will step forward and vow to serve God and neighbor.
Here’s a preview of the men who will be ordained:
Donald Esler, 58, of Livonia, is married to Gail (Perkins) Esler and is a member of St. Aidan Parish in Livonia. The Redford High School and Walsh College graduate is a senior accounts receivable analyst at NGK Sparkplugs USA.
Esler completed his diaconate internship at St. John Neumann Parish in Canton and has done ministry at Huron Valley Correctional Facility, Angela Hospice, St. Christopher’s Soup Kitchen and food pantry, St. Aloysius Sidewalk Ministry and St. Mary’s Hospital in Livonia.
“Being a deacon means to minister to those outside the four walls of the parish community," Esler said. “Whether it be the sick, the homeless or the imprisoned, it’s bringing their needs to the parish community.
“I envision bringing Christ to others through my actions," Esler continued. “Being a deacon means engaging people through the ‘yes’ of Christ and a smile; serving those who are lonely, infirmed, or just in need of someone to listen to them."
Greg Willoughby, 61, of Sterling Heights, is married to Laurie J. (Cassidy) Willoughby and is a member of St. Therese of Lisieux Parish in Shelby Township. The couple has two children: Pamela Morris and Angela Hallisy. A graduate of Romeo High School, Macomb Community College, Walsh College and Wayne State University, Willoughby is an information technology director at Mayco International, LLC.
As a ministry intern at St. Paul of Tarsus Parish in Clinton Township, Willoughby has served at hospitals, veterans’ shelters, homeless shelters and at the parish.
“Jesus said, ‘I am among you as one who serves,’" Willoughby said. “As a deacon, I am called to service, to conform my life to that of Christ. What this will look like is yet to be revealed. My desire is to serve at my assigned parish in service of the Word of God and service at the altar. My service of charity will be driven by the needs of the community; which may also include one of the many ministries I had the privilege to perform during my years of formation."
Hector Anaya-Bustos, 50, of Troy, is married to Roci Icela Trejo-Garcia Anaya and is a member of St. Damian of Molokai Parish in Pontiac. Hector and Roci have three children: Hector Jr., Luis-Miguel and Christopher. Anaya-Bustos graduated from the Centro de Estudios Cientifícos y Tecnológicos No. 2 and the National Polytechnic Institute in Mexico City, and is a purchasing manager with a mechanical engineering degree at Axletech in Troy.
Anaya-Bustos interned at St. Andrew Parish in Rochester and has worked with married couples in stressful conditions during his internship.
“My wife and I began our activities at our church proclaiming the word of God," Anaya-Bustos said. “Then we entered the Christian Family Movement, where we realize there is a big shortage of ordained ministers who can help and work with lay groups. Finally I entered the seminary to study theology, so I could have good conversations and answer the tough religious questions my older son was asking me. It was sometime in the seminary that I heard the calling; I’m not sure how or who mentioned to me to consider the permanent deaconate."
Jeff Loeb, 44, of Clinton Township, is married to Constance (Munroe) Loeb and is a parishioner at St. Paul of Tarsus in Clinton Township. A graduate of Notre Dame High School in Harper Woods, the University of Detroit Mercy and Baker College, Loeb is an insurance coordinator at Fresenius Kidney Care.
Serving his internship at St. Hubert Parish in Harrison Township, Loeb has experience serving in hospital ministry, home ministry, homeless shelters, the Capuchin Soup Kitchen and in parish ministries.
“My vision of ministry is bringing the love of Jesus to those who are thirsting for inclusion and hope," Loeb said. “Those who hunger for Jesus include those on the periphery of society who are often forgotten or seen as misfits. This is who our Holy Father calls us to serve as well as those in our local communities. When I received my calling to follow the Lord, I thought I was losing my mind. But I’ve received several positive affirmations from other people in regard to serving as a deacon."
Leo Maciolek, 58, of Livonia, is married to Sharon (Kostrzewa) Maciolek, and has a son, Michael. The Macioleks are members of St. Joseph Parish in South Lyon. Leo Maciolek is a graduate of St. Hedwig High School in Detroit, Madonna University and Lawrence Tech and is in prototype engine tooling development at Kelly Services.
As an intern at St. James Parish in Novi, Maciolek has served incarcerated individuals via the Communion and Scripture service at the Huron Valley Women’s Facility in Ypsilanti, as well as the spiritual care ministry at Providence Park Hospital in Novi, Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous at the Capuchin Soup Kitchen on Meldrum Street in Detroit and the Catholicism Group Discussion at St. James Parish.
“As a deacon, you are a minster of the word, altar and charity," Maciolek said. “As it applies to me, my vision is that of a minister of service. It’s based on a view of Christ the Servant, as a role model. You seek to serve for the greater glory of God, and you make the necessary sacrifices in order to bring faith to the marginalized and you serve as Jesus’ directors. The needs out there are wide and varied, but it’s not about what I want; it’s what God has in His plans for me."
Regis Buckley, 65, of Canton, is married to Ann (Smiatacz) Buckley. The couple are parishioners at St. Colette in Livonia and have six children: Regis, Kathleen, Mary, Brian, Theresa and Annie. Buckley is a retired General Motors finance manager who graduated from Salesian Catholic High School in Detroit, the General Motors Institute in Flint (Kettering University) and the University of Michigan.
Completing his internship at St. Thomas a’Becket Parish in Canton, Buckley has ministered via Communion series at nursing homes and bringing Communion to shut-ins, serving at funeral vigils and committals, and assisting with liturgies, baptisms and RCIA. He’s also worked in hospital and prison ministry, supported others at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, led intercessory prayer groups and facilitated a listing of social services offered at St. Thomas a’Becket.
“I view my ministry as providing service to the people of God with the goal of bringing as many souls to heaven as I can," Buckley said. “My vision is to influence people and proclaim the Gospel by my life and to assist my pastor in achieving the goals of the parish. I grew up in the inner city, and I would also like to recruit minority candidates to the diaconate.
“I heard the call to the permanent diaconate for decades," Buckley continued. “I had been an extraordinary minister of the Eucharist for many years, but always felt that I was not doing enough for people or for the Church. Over the years, people randomly suggested the diaconate for me, but I always had an excuse not to pursue it. In 2009, General Motors went through their bankruptcy, and I accepted a position in one of the spinoff entities, which I accepted and required me to take a retirement package. (After the offer at the spinoff was taken off the table) I declined a position at the reorganized GM and decided to stay retired. As far as I was concerned, this was the Holy Spirt telling me that I had no more excuses and needed to answer God’s call."
Tom Caporuscio, 50, of Rochester, is married to Josephine (DiGrande) Caporuscio and has two children, Nicolette and Michael. A member of St. Andrew Parish in Rochester, he is a graduate of Stevenson High School in Sterling Heights and Lawrence Tech, becoming a self-employed building and general contractor.
Interning at St. Clement of Rome Parish in Romeo, Caporuscio has served at Communion services and Bible studies at nursing homes, brought Communion for shut-ins and hospital patients, and ministered in hospital chaplaincy, funeral vigils, and during the liturgy and confirmation Masses. He’s also done Baptism preparation courses and assisted with baptism, worked at an inner-city food kitchen and crisis center and provided private and personal spiritual care to others.
“We are all moving in the same direction in life, with ultimately the same destination: to and before God," Caporuscio said. “However, as we each take different paths to get there, some get lost and others choose to ignore the end goal. It is my life’s ministry to encourage others moving along those different paths of life to finish the race and to help carry my weaker brothers and sisters along the way. By modeling Christ to whomever I encourage, I hope to give them that spark of energy to keep them moving toward God and to not lose the hope or sight of heaven, despite how hard the path traveled may be."