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Meet St. Helen's Pastoral Staff






Fr. Michael Saporito, Pastor

Fr. Michael was ordained a priest for service to the Archdiocese of Newark on May 30, 1992.  He was born in Newark and raised in nearby Bloomfield along with his sister and two brothers. Fr. Michael is the proud uncle of five nieces and one grand nephew.  Upon completion of his undergraduate degree in accounting at Rutgers University, Fr. Michael worked as an auditor for a New Jersey accounting firm.  Since finishing his studies for the priesthood at Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall, he has served as a parochial vicar at St. Joseph’s Church in West Orange, St. Peter’s in River Edge, Our Lady of the Visitation Church in Paramus, and St. Elizabeth’s in Wyckoff. Fr. Michael was Pastor of St. Joseph's in Maplewood for seven years before coming to Westfield.  Fr. Michael is an avid fan of the NY Mets and NY Giants.  His family and friends are the joy of his life!






Fr. Gabriel J. Curtis

Fr. Gabriel was born and raised in Managua, Nicaragua.  He began his university studies at the Universidad Católica “Redemptoris Mater” in his home city, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy with Education Studies, and a Master of Arts in Humanities.  He also achieved Vocal and Opera Studies at UPOLI’s Conservatory of Music.  While working as a singer he performed roles in operas such as Tosca, La Boheme, and the zarzuela La Gran Via.  At Immaculate Conception Seminary – School of Theology, he earned a Master of Divinity degree and a Master of Arts in Church History.  During formation at the seminary he served at St. Peter’s Church in River Edge and St. Joseph the Carpenter in Roselle and as Deacon in Our Lady of Mt. Virgin in Garfield.  In addition he completed a summer formation program at St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center, Paterson and a Spirituality Program at Creighton University, Omaha.  He was ordained priest on May 28, 2016.  Fr. Gabo enjoys music and the arts, especially opera, sports, and learning new languages. 



Marilyn Ryan, Pastoral Associate

Marilyn Ryan coordinates St. Helen's many Outreach Programs and Eucharistic Ministry.  She was born and raised in Newark, NJ.  Marilyn has a bachelor's degree in education from Seton Hall University and taught elementary school for  several years.  She also is a Licensed Practical Nurse and worked at Rahway Hospital, and received a certificate in pastoral ministry from the College of St. Elizabeth.  In her spare time Marilyn loves the Jersey Shore, wood working, Sudoku, and needle point.






Aida Gabuzda, Parish Director of Operations

Aida possesses a genuine interest in fostering individual development. With experience in Human Resources and Career Coaching, she is passionate about helping people in all stages of life, from new graduates to experienced professionals.
Prior to joining St. Helen’s Pastoral staff, she was a Human Resourcesprofessional at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) for over 25 years specializing in career coaching and talent development. Aida worked on many internal task forces that contributed to enhanced career satisfaction and progression for staff.  She also had the opportunity to advise PwC professionals in North and South America, Europe and Asia on their leadership development journey.  
Outside of work, Aida performs mock interviews for high school and college students seeking college admissions, internships or first time job opportunities.  She donates all proceeds to Autism Speaks.
Aida lives in Westfield with her husband Larry and college-aged children, Nick and Danielle. 




Tricia McGlynn, Director Religious Education Grades 1-5

Tricia grew up in North Arlington, New Jersey and was a parishioner of Queen of Peace Church. She is a graduate of Kean University with a degree in Early Childhood Education/English. She married her husband, Patrick, in 1991 and moved to Westfield in 2001. Tricia was a stay at home mom from 1995-2007 to raise her three sons Christopher, James and Will. She and Patrick joined St. Helen Church as parishioners in 2001; and Tricia has been actively involved in many ministries at the parish including Cornerstone, Vacation Bible School, Catholic Work Heart Camp, a Religious Education catechist, Eucharistic Minister, Pastoral Council member, and most recently as co-coordinator of Kids Corner, our preschool worship ministry. Trish loves working with children and their families and has been a successful preschool and Kindergarten teacher for 25 years.
Before joining the Pastoral Staff at St. Helen, Trish enjoyed teaching Kindergarten at Presbyterian Nursery School and Kindergarten in Westfield. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, entertaining, and spending as much time with her family and friends as possible!



Michael Fusco, Director of Religious Education Grades 6-8 and Confirmation

Michael joined St. Helen’s as a director of religious education in 2012.  Michael brings over twenty years of youth ministry and religious education experience with him.  His resume includes time at St. Teresa of Avila Parish in Summit as both a youth minister and pastoral associate for religious education, youth and young adult ministry and as the director of youth ministry and confirmation at St. Rose of Lima Parish in Short Hills.  Today Michael presents workshops on middle school ministry and technology to parishes and dioceses all over the state and the northeast for Our Sunday Visitor Curriculum Division.  Michael has also created Christ2Chaos.org and owns and operates two very successful entertainment companies, Summit Soundz Entertainment and NJ Backyard Movies.  Michael lives in Summit with his wife and his two teenage children.



Patti Gardner, High School Youth Minister

Patti has been the Youth Minister at St. Helen's since 1999.  She was born in Staten Island NY and raised in Scotch Plains, NJ.  Patti attended Holy Trinity School, Mount St. Mary Academy and graduated from Wilkes University, PA with a double major in elementary and music education.  Patti began singing at the age 14 with the 10:45 Choir at St. Helen's.  She won best female vocalist of the year in high school performing on the Garden State Arts Center Stage.  She then went on to perform in an off-broadway show and toured with Kenny Rogers in his Christmas concerts one season. Before coming to St. Helen's Patti taught in the Watchung Public School System and Music Together.  Patti started the "Songbirds"at St. Helen's (now the Songbirds Worship Team) in 2000.  Patti loves working with the youth of our parish and is inspired by them on a daily basis with their willingness and ability to serve and reach out to others!  Patti resides in Westfield with her husband George and their dog Willis.