Student Council 2011
Liturgical Coordinator - Curtis Arvay
All around athlete Curtis Arvay grew up on a farm in Olds, Alberta where he raised all kinds of animals like steers and sheep. He went to John Paul II bible school in Radway, Alberta. From there he came to Hinton for CCO's summer mission, Impact. He moved to Calgary in the Spring of 2010 and, due to his desire to be of service to the Catholic community, is now UCCC's Liturgical Coordinator. Curtis is also a student at SAIT, where he is currently taking Geomatic Engineering Technology. During his down time, he loves to keep himself busy with various outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, skiing, and camping.
Curtis Arvay has shown to be one of the most committed members of the UCCC. We are very blessed to have his humble presence on council this year as he is always puts his community ahead of himself. He participates in all sectors of the communal service, not just liturgical duties.
One cool thing about Curtis Arvay: he has gone down in UCCC sports history when he made one of the most memorable assists on a special Sunday afternoon (UCCC soccer day). He took on a couple of players in Maradona style fashion and the play finished off with a goal - (Luis G. is testimony to this). TSN, TheScore and Sportsnet tried to find the video, but UCCC holds the Copyrights. This magical moment in UCCC soccer history gave him the nickname Curtis Arvadona.
Social Justice - Dan Williams
Dan is well suited as the University of Calgary Catholic Community Social Justice Coordinator. Let’s break it down- firstly he’s at university, and that university is in Calgary. Bang! There’s two outta seven down right away. Thirdly, he’s been baptized and confirmed as a Catholic and has not (yet) been excommunicated. Also, as most of the community can tell you, he’s social. He cannot go an entire mass without shaking hands with those around him and most times he even goes for a little ‘communal drinkin’ with the other parishioners mid-mass. He could be considered to be just, if you really look for it. For example, one time he was elected to social justice coordinator at a university Catholic community, and he ran unopposed because he muscled out his competition. But he got 100% of the votes and that 100% makes his victory justified. And finally I’m not sure he could be described as a coordinator, in fact it’s quite the opposite, he’s rather disorganized. But he is definitely coordinated, I mean really coordinated, like Cirque de Soleil kind of coordination. So there you have it. We have learnt that Dan is the man for the job, and that the President should not let council write their own bio’s next year. (Or choose their own picture)
Social Events - Monica Nino
Monica is a second year Biological Sciences student at the University of Calgary with the hopes of one day becoming a Dentist. She was born in Bogota, Colombia and came to Canada 5 years ago. Monica will be working on council this year, along with Eden, as a Social Events Coordinator. She first learned of UCCC through Christian Catholic Outreach (CCO) and wanted to get involved in doing the kinds of things both groups do. She believes that being involved and helping communities helps anyone stay with the right influences.
In the summer of 2011, Monica went to Kenya, Africa to do some volunteer work under IVHQ Living Positive Kenya. This was always a desire of Monica's, to go abroad and do some volunteering work in Africa - when the challenge came up she went for it. Monica worked in the HIV aids sector, providing help and support for women who struggle with this disease. As much as she was giving in her work there, Monica believes that this experience made her learn many things about the people in Africa and how much need there really is in the world. This experience served Monica as she saw things that made her want to act and give back feeling blessed and fortunate in her life.
Aside from the busy life Monica has (work, volunteering, school) she does have interests. Some of these include: dancing, painting, fine arts and travelling.
Monica's goal's for our community this year is to make Jesus the priority and share our Catholic faith with all channels - in wanting to be part of this she joined council. Personal growth is important to her and she wants to help break fears and issues on faith and stand up for one's Catholic belief's.
Social Events - Eden D'Souza
This man needs no introduction - if you have ever been to UCCC or any Catholic church in Calgary for that matter.. you probably know who Eden D is! To us, Eden is our force, our punch, our voice and our energy!
Eden is currently working as the Stewardship Coordinator at the Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary. Being the smart intelligent and wise man that he is, Eden has a masters in Business. Eden was born in Dubai (United Arab Emirates) and came to Canada at the age of three years.
Eden is not stranger to the UCCC as he has been attending masses, events and gatherings since 2001. However, Eden's leap of faith to join council came 2 years ago when he took on the Liturgical Coordinator position. In his second year on council he will be taking on the position of Social Events - we can guarantee that there will be some fantastic, fun and grand events coming under Eden's direction.
Some of his interests? Eden loves to travel in big groups! He organized the planning and implementation of the recent life-altering World Youth Day trip to Madrid that had 62 people! He is no stranger to WYD's as this became Eden's 4th World Youth Day - there is no doubt he is a fan of young adults and the pope. He also enjoys learning on the Catholic faith, spending time with family & friends, hockey and soccer - where he recently won a league title in the Calgary Sports & Recreation league... Star if we ever knew one!
Eden's goal and highest purpose for being on council is to make the UCCC all inclusive. Eden strongly feels that no one should be left out and that everyone should experience the love of Christ in their lives. Many members of the UCCC know Eden and what great things he brings to our community. He definitely makes good on being inclusive to everyone - Eden does such a wonderful job bringing new people to the community that he could bring people from China if he wanted to! This is Eden D'Souza... the big E! A huge joy and blessing to the UCCC!
Campus Coordinator - Rianna Lee
Charismatic, outgoing, energized and always at service!
Rianna Lee is the UCCC's 2011 Campus Coordinator. She is not a stranger to UCCC as she first made her appearance a couple years ago. Nevertheless, she accepted the invite to serve our community through joining council this year. Rianna is a 4th year Kinesiology student as the University of Calgary. She was born and raised in Calgary however she has a Chinese background and is Filipino cultured from her mother's side - quite the multiculturalist! Rianna credit's her great Catholic friends for her faith and personal growth in Catholicism.
In 2010, Rianna went to Limerick, Ireland to study broad. Not only did this allow her to study at the University of Limerick, she was able to to travel and visit another 7 countries in Europe. While this semester broad may appear a challenge to some, Rianna acknowledges that it was a great opportunity for personal growth - something she didn't let pass.
In the summer 2011, Rianna went to World Youth Day in Madrid. Rianna describes this occasion as an 'overwhelming experience'. To her, the trip was a wonderful way to grow spiritually and move closer to Christ. Moreover, she emphasizes how it was a revival of the Father and everyone united with the Church. Definitely one of the most memorable moments of her life.
Some of her interests: travelling, photography, dancing and being active. Music and choir are also big parts of Rianna's life. She plays the piano, flute and guitar - a band in her own being!
The honest truth on Rianna joining council this year is that she did not know why she initially did join. However, now that she is serving the community she wants it! And is into it!! Rianna says this is a wonderful mission for her and she looks forward to being a strong presence for our community off and on the UofC campus.
Spiritual Development - Isabelle Macasaet
One of the newest stars to the UCCC council and community who has exploded onto the scene comes to us from Ascension parish. Humble, kind, smart and always at the community's service, Isabelle Macasaet has been a huge blessing for our community. She is a 1st year student at the University of Calgary who is majoring in International Relations. She grew up in a city called Manila in the Phillippines and then moved to Calgary with her family when she was 10 years old. Gotta love the Phillippines for giving great people like her to us and all our Catholic communities around the world!
Isabelle shares the position of Spiritual Coordinator along with Kamin. Being a past choir member at Ascension parish has inspired a desire to be on council this year to serve in this community. Her curiosities for UCCC lead her to ask questions at our Easter Vigil and before we knew it without any hesitation, she accepted our invite to join council. New to UCCC and first year on council - does it get any better than that? Isabelle is never shy to offer help and is always there to serve not just in Spiritual Development duties but also in social ones. (ex. Commissioning Mass & UCCC All Saints Dance)
A couple things that she likes to do are go hiking or just hang out with some friends and family. Isabelle also works at a Goodlife gym, therefore, after Thanksgiving dinner's and Christmas feasts, she would be the one to talk to! One thing that Isabelle is passionate about is humanitarian causes, probably why she decided to take International Relations. A crazy fact about Isabelle is that she shares her birthday with her mom on January 1st - I bet you can't find anyone else with that!
Spiritual Development - Kamin Paul
Another new star to the fold of the UCCC council that has more energy than the Energizer Bunny is Kamin Paul. Kamin is a second year student at the University of Calgary, enrolled in the Faculty of Science. She enjoys reading, and though she won't admit it, she is a talented dancer and musician; there was evidence of the dancing during our All Saints dance! Kamin became part of UCCC when she was invited to one of the events by her friends, and soon after she joined the council as one of our Spiritual Coordinators. Kamin is another case of the 'new to the community, first year on council' group - again, it doesn't get any better than that!
Kamin recently went to the World Youth Day in Madrid with a group called Jesus Youth. Just like it would be for anyone else, this experience was life altering and a great form of spiritual and personal growth for Kamin. When it comes to music, Kamin plays an instrument that I like to call 'the box'. She has a name for it.. but I think it's a box. However don't let 'the box' description fool you! Kamin can make a fantastic base noise with it - and what music it plays! At the Jesus Youth gatherings Kamin plays this instrument with the music team and is sounds marvelous! I invite everyone to Jesus Youth gatherings you really ought to see how Kamin rocks her music for the Lord!
Kamin believes that being part of the community is a great way to grow in fellowship with those who share the faith. She is super excited for this year, and she hopes to learn more and grow more spiritually along with everyone else!
Hospitality - Katia Morales
This dazzling lady completes the third Hispanic member of our UCCC council. Humble, kind and the 'behind the scenes motor' for the UCCC this year, Katia Morales is UCCC's newest Hospitality person. Not only is this a perfect fit due to her huge loving and caring personality, she works in a hospital, it only makes sense! This year, she'll be the face you will see at the entrance of mass and the one that you will see last leaving after fellowship. Katia was born in Managua, Nicaragua and came to Canada with her family at the age of 3. Katia is one of the young professionals in the community working as a Registered Nurse in the Medical/Oncology unit at the Foothills Hospital.
This is Katia's 2nd year at the community and first on council. Katia's strongest connection's with the Lord have been through her reading of Thomas A. Kempis book 'The Imitation of Christ' and praying the Rosary. Katia's favorite Bible quote is from Philippians 4:13 - “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. This quote has been a reference point to her faith and how she expresses herself in our world. Katia's heartwarming personality and way of being has always made her the kind of person that fights and stands for the little ones without any preference - she currently sponsors a 5 year old girl from Nicaragua and a 13 year old boy from India.
Some of Katia's interests are: stargazing, listening to music, taking dance classes, going to concerts, traveling, and spending time with family and friends. During Christmas time, Katia enjoys participating in Operation Christmas Child. She organizes the collection of shoes boxes, finds and provides toys and gifts to send to less fortunate children around the word (last year in Haiti) - this is something she takes great effort, love and joy in doing!
Katia pegs her mother as her role model. She taught her to always work hard to fulfill goals/dreams and be grateful for everything that you have. Katia aspires to work hard and use her caring and giving approach to serve her community and help to unite members to grow in faith together.
Chairperson - Luis Garcia
Loud, funny, never stops laughing and always says 'Good things' .. Known as 'El Presidente', 'Louis XIV' and UCCC's newest Chairperson is Luis Garcia. Luis is graduate of the Law & Society program at UofC and is currently working as a Personal Lines Underwriter at the Dominion of Canada Insurance Company. He was born in San Vicente, El Salvador and moved with his family to Canada in 1992 at 5 years.
Luis first came to UCCC from the Spanish community Our Lady of Guadalupe. He first heard of UCCC four years ago and attended that year's Fall retreat. Luis was impressed by the kind of Catholics he had met and this motivated him in some ways to be a more fervent Catholic. Luis then joined council a year ago as the Social Justice coordinator staying always committed to the community's Sandwich making for the Drop-In center.
Luis credits the Eucharist, his parents, brothers (German, Guillermo, and Carlos - The Garcia boys), Freddy Padilla, Ben & Sara Francis and other members of the UCCC community for his spiritual growth. Luis also credits Father Thao, who's been essential to his spiritual journey and blessing in his life. He describes Father Thao as a joyful, sincere and great example of how a priest can support his community in all aspects. Father Thao's example has influenced him to aim to have the same personality with all members of the community. The way Luis most connected to the Catholic faith is through the Eucharist and he recalls of an experience he had when praying in front of the blessed sacrament. Luis felt an extreme happiness and could feel the presence of Jesus telling him that no matter how much we fail and bring ourselves down, Jesus loves us very much and he will always be waiting with his arms open. Later he went to confession and after leaving it felt like he had lost 200lbs!
Luis loves soccer! He worked at a soccer camp for 4 years and then as a volunteer, he coached kids ages 9-12 at the Boys and Girls Club who won their league! He loves Argentina! (Hence the picture). Tip: Argentina won the World Cup the year Luis was born 1986! Big Madrid & Boca fan as well. He also likes hockey, swimming, working out and volunteering at Boys and Girls Club. Luis loves hanging out with friends, the Hospitality person (they're kinda close haha) and his brothers - who he considers his best friends along with the Hospitality person =). Luis' favourite book is Jon Huntsman's "Winners Never Cheat: Everyday Values We Learned as Children (But May Have Forgotten)" - this book is instrumental to Luis and what he aims his behaviour to be not just at UCCC but in general - to him, a moral compass for leadership and decision making in life.
Goal for the UCCC? Firstly, he thanks Sam, Cheryl and Eden for pushing him over the cliff to run for UCCC chair. Luis is extremely proud to be a part of UCCC and took on the Chair position with a desire to give back to the community everything that the community gave him. Luis feels God has blessed UCCC by having such a fantastic council this year - 'We couldn't have had another 8 better individuals looking over our community and I'm very lucky to be working with all of them - thank you for accepting the mission! Good things! We eagerly look forward to serving our community! God Bless!'