The Church of Saint Catherine of Siena           Moscow, Pennsylvania

                                                              . . . A Roman Catholic Parish Community in the Diocese of Scranton



Parish Staff

Fr. Bob Simon, Pastor

            Fr. Bob Simon began serving St. Catherine of Siena as pastor in July 2007. Ordained a priest of the Diocese of Scranton by Bishop James C. Timlin on June 30, 1990, he is a native of Plains, Pennsylvania. The son of Helen Marie Simon and the late Carl J. Simon, he is a graduate of North End Elementary Catholic School and Bishop Hoban High School. Fr. Simon earned his bachelors degree from the University of Scranton. Father Simon holds a Master of Divinity degree from Seton Hall University and a Master of Arts in Liturgical Theology from the University of Notre Dame. He has recently done additional graduate studies at The Liturgy Institute, Mundelein Seminary, Mundelein, Illinois. Father Simon has served as Executive Director of the Office of Parish Ministries of the Diocese of Scranton and the Diocesan Pro-Life Director. He is a member of the North Pocono Ministerium and the Presbyteral Council of the Diocese of Scranton. He is a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. Prior to coming to St. Catherine’s, Father Simon has served as pastor in the Keyser Valley Section of Scranton, Old Forge, and Susquehanna, Pennsylvania. He has served as an Assistant Pastor at St. Peter’s Cathedral, Scranton as well as parishes in Honesdale and Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania.

Laura Wendt, Pastoral Associate

Hi, I am Laura Wendt. My husband Lars and I moved here in 2014 from Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas with our two sons, Nick (23) and Chris (19). My husband serves in the U.S. Army and was stationed here at the University of Scranton as the Professor of Military Science and the head of ROTC. Originally I am from Altamonte Springs, Florida, but in the 26 years since marrying Lars, I have lived in 5 different states and Germany and have moved eleven times. Most of my time has been spent raising my kids and volunteering with a diverse group of organizations as we’ve moved around. I earned my bachelor’s degree in business from SUNY Oswego and just finished up my MBA at the University of Scranton.

The first weekend in Pennsylvania we were blessed to have found St. Catherine’s and were welcomed right from the beginning as part of the family. Since moving here I have tried to become involved in many of the great activities I see taking place at St. Catherine’s.  This year I have been given an opportunity to serve as a part-time  pastoral associate here in our church. With this position, I hope to expand the good work I see already happening in our community and build upon the foundation Deacon John set by serving those in the community unable to come to church. I will serve as the point of contact for the parish for any information regarding sick, hospitalized or homebound parishioners who need our assistance. This information will ensure that they receive the sacraments and any short-term assistance that is needed.   I will also serve as the link between this community and the volunteer needs of the parish. So, if you’re looking for a way to become more involved in the parish, I’m the one to see.

In the army, we have battle buddies, someone to lean on during tough times. My goal is to make sure that no one in our parish feels as though they are going it alone. I want to facilitate and encourage connections between our members and look forward to being instrumental in that role. I am looking forward to partnering with you and supporting our many volunteers.

Mary Franceschelli, Office/Bulletin

       A native of Dunmore, I have been the secretary and bulletin editor at Saint Catherine’s since June of 2000 and work on Mondays and Fridays. Prior to that time I served as secretary at Fatima Renewal Center for the Diocese of Scranton for 12 years. I am married to Deacon John and I am the mother of two terrific daughters, Melissa who lives with her family here in Moscow, and Gina who lives with her family in Stuttgart, Germany. I am also Mom-Mom to Austin James and Patrick Michael and Grandma to Samuel and Malin Aaron.

      As life circumstances change, so do the ways we serve our Lord. Through the years I have served our parish community as teacher for Summer Bible School, served as Youth Minister and High School Religious Ed Teacher for more than 10 years, and I sang with the Adult Choir. Now I am the AM Coordinator for Eucharistic Adoration, sing with the Funeral Choir, coordinate our annual parish blood drive and serve as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, and Reader.

I enjoy cooking, crafts, the outdoors, singing, reading anything I can get my hands on, animals (especially my dogs, Barney and Sherlock) and iconography [not necessarily in that order].

Donna Haran, Office/Bookkeeping

         Donna started working for St. Catherine's in April 2011.  

As a Parishioner of St. Catherine’s, I saw the need for a new Bookkeeper in the bulletin & in April 2011 I became an employee! I enjoy helping the church & meeting all the wonderful people of our Parish.

I attended the College of Insurance, a division of St. John’s University. I worked at the World Trade Center prior to having a family as a licensed broker and Supervisor of the Commercial Lines Division of Wm. H. McGee & Co., Inc.

I was blessed & fortunate to be a “stay at home” Mom while my children were growing up. I had my own children’s clothing business, did various consulting jobs, was a Girl Scout leader & did volunteer service in our Community during that time.

Originally from New York, and now a resident in the North Pocono community for the last 18 years, we can officially say that NEPA is home.

My husband Chris & I have 3 wonderful children, Sabrina & Julie, who both study at The University of Pittsburgh, & Andrew, who attends North Pocono High School.


Youth Minister


Sandra Czyzyk, Director of Religious Ed

    Sandra Czyzyk comes to our parish with a BA in Education from Marywood University and an MA in Theology from Villanova . Her home parish is St. Paul of the Cross Parish in Scranton, but has formerly subbed with the North Pocono School District and worked with children with "special gifts" in its schools, through the Youth Advocate Program of which she is currently employed. She has been a DRE in several parishes in the Diocese of Scranton and formerly worked in the Office of Religious Education.   Sandra is also a Secular Franciscan, in formation, in the Archdiocese of Washington.
    Her main goal in the parish is to accompany the families, and catechists in their ongoing growth in faith that has been already nurtured by so many good DRE's and Pastors in this parish.

Paul Lukasiewicz, Worship/Liturgy

           I am a Scranton native and have been an elementary music teacher in the Scranton School District since 2002. In addition to teaching music to students in grades Pre-K to 5th grade, I also direct and create programming material for the TV studio at George Bancroft and produce the first and only podcast in the district. I have published articles about my work in the Scranton School District newsletter, which is distributed by the Scranton Times quarterly.

           I started at St. Catherine's as an organist for the weekend masses in 1991. Since that time, I became the accompanist for the Youth Choir, the Adult Choir, choir director, and as of July 2009, director of music. I have debuted many original musical works at our church, including settings for "Ave Maria" and "For the Beauty of the Earth," several instrumental pieces performed during the Christmas and Easter seasons, and parts of my mass, "Missa Benedicta," named for Sr. Benedicta Berendes IHM, my music history teacher at Marywood.

            I graduated from Marywood University in 1999 with a BM in Music Education and was awarded The Sister M. Clare Kelley Medal for Excellence in Music. In 2007, I received my MA, also in Music Education from Marywood. In addition, I have studied music technology courses during the summers at Villanova University and online through the University of Colorado and have completed my TI:ME (Technology Institute for Music Educators) certification. My TI:ME instructors have included Dr. Tom Rudolph, Dr. Floyd Richmond, Dr. John Kuzmich, Ken Peters, and Mike Fein. I have taught various music and technology classes at Marywood University's Vivace Music Institute (formerly known as the Summer Music Camp) since 1995. 

           I have performed in the pit orchestra of Marywood's major theatre productions, "Pippin," "A Chorus Line," "Guys & Dolls," and "Will Rogers Follies," and in the senior workshop production of "The Fantastics." I have also worked "behind the scenes," assisting with props, lighting, and sound for several music department productions. Several of my original pieces have been performed by the Marywood Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Percussion Ensemble, and at the Vivace Music Institute. I have also performed in several musicals and cabarets with the former "Diva Theater" and continue to work as an independent musician for weddings and wedding receptions. I have been teaching private music lessons since 1997.

           I play the piano, organ, violin, and percussion, and have studied privately with Bob Manento, Sr. Immaculate Severino IHM, Steve Mathiesen, Mark Laubach, and Sophie Till.

          If you are interested in purchasing music I have written, please visit my website: http://www.musicofmoscow.com

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