Fr. Pat Mulcahy
So a little about me: I’m the oldest of three children, and I have two sisters. The oldest of them, Sharon, lives with my mother, Julie, in the house I grew up in in Glen Ellyn. The younger of them, Peggy, lives in Winfield with her husband John and her children Julia, Danny, Molly and Katie. You’ll probably see all of them from time to time. I know they are looking forward to getting to know you.
I was a “later” vocation. I graduated in 1986 from Illinois Benedictine College in Lisle, which is now Benedictine University. I discerned a call to priesthood at that time, but ultimately decided the time was not right for me. So I worked as a youth ministry director at St. Petronille Parish in Glen Ellyn for about six years. I then had a couple of jobs for about five years each at a computer supply business, where I became the sales manager, and then at a printing firm where my grandfather, father and uncle all worked. I loved all of those jobs, but came to know that I wasn’t doing what God wanted me to do, so in 2001, I began my studies at Mundelein Seminary, graduating and being ordained to the Priesthood of Jesus Christ in 2006, the only one ordained that year.
My first parish was Saint Raphael in Naperville, where I served as Parochial Vicar for three years. I then went back to Saint Petronille in Glen Ellyn, where I served as Parochial Vicar for a mere year and a half before being called to be the Pastor at Notre Dame in Clarendon Hills. I was there for six and a half years when Bishop Conlon asked me to come to Saint Mary Immaculate. I am delighted that as a Pastor, I have been privileged to serve at two parishes named in honor of our Blessed Mother!
Fr. James Guarascio
I’ll introduce myself the same way Pope Francis did, “I am a sinner whom the Lord has looked upon with mercy.” I grew up an everyday cradle Catholic in Naperville, the son of a CPA and a saint whom I call my mother. I have three older brothers who are twelve, nine, and five years older than me, each pursuing careers in business, medicine, and engineering respectively. All three are happily married and I was blessed to be the priest celebrant for two of them! (I wasn’t a priest yet for the other one) Though they all went to Benet for high school, I was the only son to attend Catholic grade school as well. While I was there at Ss. Peter and Paul grade school (also my home parish) I heard the call to the priesthood. By 8 th grade, I was convinced the Lord was asking me to follow this call, so I entered seminary immediately after attending Benet Academy for high school.
During my eight years in seminary, I was blessed to not only learn so much about Our Lord and our faith, but also to come to know Our Lord Himself. I will forever be grateful for the innumerable experiences, programs, and classes that I went through which equipped me so well for the priesthood.
I spent the first three years of my priesthood at Our Lady of Mercy in Aurora, where I discovered how much I really do love being a priest. While I was there I hosted “Ask Me Anything” sessions, heard confessions at DuPage County Jail, became the chaplain for Waterleaf Women’s Center, led the Fit Shepherds men’s ministry, took on the Unbound prayer ministry for the diocese, hosted a weekly Monday Spanish Mass, ran the OCIA (otherwise known as the RCIA), as well as all kinds of other great stuff! I’m sure you’ll find out relatively quickly that I love to learn and to teach. In fact, after being forced to major in philosophy in college seminary, I discovered that I actually loved it! So please, don’t hesitate to ask me any faith-related questions!
Additionally, I am a member of the recently established Companions of Christ priestly association in our Diocese. You may have heard about this association via the old Christ Is Our Hope magazine, or via the podcast “Catholic Stuff You Should Know,” since the podcast’s hosts were all Companions of Christ in Denver. We seek to live our diocesan priesthood by following the evangelical counsels, a rule of life, and a commitment to priestly fraternity and support. You can learn more about us at companionsofchristjoliet.org!
Besides that, I enjoy craft beer, exercise, playing volleyball, and visiting parishioners’ houses for meals! Please don’t hesitate to reach out so I can visit and get to know you better! Please keep me in your prayers as I will be praying for you!
Fr. James Guarascio
Fr. John Regan
Father John Regan has been a priest-in-residence at St. Mary Immaculate since June 2012. Born in 1963, he grew up in Peotone and was the youngest of four children in his family that actively participated at St. Paul the Apostle Church. After receiving his degree in mathematics from the University of Notre Dame, he entered Mundelein Seminary to prepare for priesthood for the Joliet Diocese. Father was ordained in 1989 and began serving as a parochial vicar at St. Liborius Parish, in Steger. From 1993 to 2006 he served as the Vocation Director for the Joliet Diocese. In 2006 he was named pastor of St. Walter Parish, in Roselle.
In 2008, Father Regan was placed on a leave of absence from public priestly ministry to address a gambling addiction and face the legal consequences of criminal financial actions at St. Walter Parish. He returned to ministry in 2012, first briefly serving at St. Jude Parish in Joliet in March to make the transition back to parish life, then more permanently at St. Mary Immaculate in June 2012.
Of his situation, Father Regan says, “The journey of addiction and recovery has been one of incredible grace. Because of my addiction, I know what sin, shame, public humiliation and scandal are. I have experienced and felt them. But because of God’s grace and my 12-step recovery group, I also know what redemption, forgiveness, and God’s mercy are. I know quite personally the amazing grace of another chance. I have a keen interest in the Church’s outreach to those who are seeking a second chance in recovery.”
Father Regan enjoys celebrating Christ’s presence in the daily situations of our lives and sharing the Good News of God’s love and mercy. If you have any questions about his situation, please feel free to ask him.