His Excellency, Most Reverend William E. Koenig, Bishop of Wilmington
Bishop William E. Koenig was installed as the tenth bishop of the Diocese of Wilmington on July 13, 2021 at St. Elizabeth Church in Wilmington, Delaware. He served as the Vicar for Clergy for the Diocese of Rockville Centre, New York. He was born on August 17, 1956 in Queens, New York. He was ordained to the priesthood on May 14, 1983. Learn more about Bishop Koenig.
Reverend James Yeakel, OFSF Pastor
Father Jim was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was first professed as an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales in 1968. He attended De Sales University in Center Valley, PA earning a BA in History in 1974. Father Yeakel completed his major seminary formation at De Sales School of Theology, Washington, DC, with an MA in Theology in 1978. After completing an MSW degree at Catholic University of America in 1980, he earned a Doctorate in Clinical Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University 1997. He is licensed as a clinical social worker in both Maryland and New York. He is also a board-certified chaplain with the National Association of Catholic Chaplains.
In May of 1979, Father Yeakel was ordained a priest at the Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul in Philadelphia, PA. As an Oblate priest Fr. Yeakel served in a variety of ministry settings. He served his Oblate community in various internal ministry positions over the years. He taught at the high school in Philadelphia and at graduate schools in the Washington, DC area. He is a member of the National Association of Catholic Chaplains, served several terms as a certification commission member and one term as the commission’s chair. He was Pastoral Care Director at St. Mary’s Hospital in Richmond, VA and again at St. Vincent Hospital in Harrison, NY. As a licensed therapist, he served on the staff of St. Luke Institute, Silver Spring, MD and St. Vincent Hospital, Harrison, NY. His previous parish work includes both part-time and full-time associate experience.
Reverend Gerald Dunne, OSFS Associate Pastor
Father Jerry is an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales. He had the honor of preaching at the final Mass held in the Bridge Street Church in November 1973. Since then, he was faculty at various high schools, was a director at Camp Brisson, and religious superior in Philadelphia. Fr Jerry has been associate pastor of Immaculate Conception/St. Jude parish since 2017.
Mr. Michael Truman
Deacon Mike was ordained on May 9, 2009. Roberta (Bobbie) and Mike met at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. They were married in the school’s chapel on July 6, 1974. After a 30-year career, Mike retired from the Federal Bureau of Prisons in August 2008. This career took them to Wisconsin, Alabama, Florida, Missouri, Maryland, New Jersey and back to Maryland. Their adult daughter lives and works in New Jersey. Mike has a B.S. (Psychology) and M.S. (Corrections) from Xavier University and an additional M.S. (Criminology) from Florida State University. Mike’s ministry is to the sick and homebound.
Mr. Ben Feril
Deacon Ben and his wife Rita became members of the parish in 2005 and both are retired U. S. Navy Officers. He was ordained into the Permanent Diaconate on August 7, 2021 he and holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Secondary Education from Central Michigan University and Master’s degree in Church Ministries and Theology from St. Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore, Maryland. Prior to his ordination, Deacon Ben, was active as a Lay Eucharistic Minister, Proclaimer, an RCIA instructor, and a member of the Parish Council. In addition to being an active adult Scout leader with the Boy Scouts of America, Deacon Ben is also a volunteer chaplain with the Christiana Care Health System in Newark, Delaware.
Mr. Roberto Ortiz
Deacon Roberto was ordained on August 7, 2021 at St. Joseph Church in Middletown, DE. He and his wife Cynthia married in May 2000 and live in Delaware with their two children Gabriel and Valerie. They have been part of our Immaculate Conception Parish / St. Jude Mission Church for over 10 years. He was born in Puerto Rico (PR) and is fully bilingual (English and Spanish). He graduated as an Industrial Engineer (B.S.I.E) from the University of PR and also has a Master of Business Administration Degree (M.B.A.) from Colorado State University. He has over 20 years’ experience working in Quality Management in the Medical Device and Electronics industries and is also a veteran of the U.S. Navy.
Mrs. Dana Brehamy, Director of Music Ministry
A native of Washington, WV, Dana is pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the Peabody Institute of Music. She also holds degrees from the Yale School of Music and the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has performed many solo recitals in the eastern US, as well as performances with orchestra. Dana has been active in church music ministry for over ten years, serving parishes in West Virginia, Ohio, Connecticut, and Maryland. She is very excited to be joining the staff at Immaculate Conception and St. Jude, and to have the opportunity to assist the parish in the praise of God through music.
Mrs. Cheryl Nickle, Coordinator of Youth Ministry
Mrs. Nickle is a lifelong member of our parish and has been a catechist in our Religious Education Program for a number of years. She holds a Masters in Religious Studies concentrating in liturgy from La Salle University, Philadelphia, PA. She is our current liturgy committee chair. As a retired teacher from the Cecil County School System, she brings a wealth of experience to her new responsibilities as Youth Ministry Coordinator.
Parish Support Staff
Plant Manager: Mr. Joseph Bench
Business Manager: Mrs. Peg O’Donnell
Office Manager: Mrs. Joan Gaffney
Religious Education Coordinator: Mrs. Vickie Eichler
Outreach Coordinator: Mrs. Dotty Fritz