Fr. Ken Cienik, SA ministers to the members of the Chapel’s family.
Fr. David Poirier, SA In August 2021 Fr. David returned to Brockton after a hiatus of thirty-five years and is assigned to coordinate liturgy at the Chapel as well as minister to and with the Tertiary Friars who were accepted into the Atonement Family under the guardianship of Fr. Gerry DiGeralamo, SA. of happy memory.
Bro. Thomas Banacki, SA, is the Guardian of Chapel of Our Savior and Manager of the Gifts Shop. As Gifts Shop Manager, he serves our customers with warmth and friendliness, often offering a sympathetic ear to those who bring their troubles to the gift shop with them.
Bro. Louis Marek, SA wears many hats here at the Chapel. Among them, he is the Administrator of the Chapel.
He was ordained to the priesthood on June 4, 1977 and has been blessed with many fulfilling assignments as a Franciscan Friar of the Atonement.
He came to the Chapel of Our Savior from St. Joan of Arc, a parish in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, served by the friars. Previously he had ministered at the community’s homeless shelter for men addicted to drugs and alcohol and also served in several other parishes of the community in addition to being the Guardian of community at Graymoor and Director of the Spiritual Life Center. He lived in Italy as the Procurator General of the Friars of the Atonement as well as Rector of the Church of Sant’Onofrio al Gianicolo in Rome and as Novice Director in Assisi.
Fr. Ken was the Director of the Pre-Theologate Program and taught a course in Ecumenism at the Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. While there he accompanied over 60 men and women who are currently serving the Church as priests and religious. He also served his community as its Vocation Director for four years.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Siena College, A Master of Divinity degree from the Washington Theological Union, a Master of Arts in Formative Spirituality from Duquesne University and a Doctor of Ministry degree from the Graduate Theological Foundation.
Having served 24 years, (17 Reserve duty and 7 Active duty), he retired from the United States Navy Chaplain Corps in 2010 with the rank of Captain having ministered to Sailors and Marines worldwide.
He is a veteran of Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom and was a First Responder at the Pentagon on 9/11. His personal decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, 2 Navy and Marine Corps Service Medals as well as the Combat Action Ribbon in addition to other unit and campaign awards.
Fr. Ken is a Knight Commander of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem and a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus.
Fr. David Poirier, SA
Fr. David is a native of Rhode Island, eldest of four siblings of whom one has passed on as a result of a COVID-19 infection. He has a niece and a nephew who live in Florida, each of whom has two sons. He also claims another “brother” who followed Fr. David’s brother home from school and stayed for eight years so his siblings think of him as family. He lives with his wife in Arizona.
Fr. David attended Our Lady of Providence Seminary, studying for the Diocese of Providence, but having become acquainted with the Friars of the Atonement at their former novitiate in Valley Falls, RI, he joined the Atonement community, making his first vows in 1973 and being ordained in 1977.
Immediately after ordination Fr. David volunteered for the Friars’ mission in Japan where he ministered for some six years. During that time he served as weekend assistant in Kashimada, Kawasaki and Kikuna, Yokohama. In March of 1980 he was appointed to the parish in Nakahara, Kawasaki as interim pastor replacing Fr. Eric Tampe, SA, who was on his triennial furlough in the United States.
When Fr. David returned to Japan after his own furlough, he took up residence at Atonement House, a Catholic cultural center in Miyagaya, Yokohama, served as Regional Treasurer, sat on the Regional Council, and taught ESL at the Friars’ Japan headquarters in Tsurumi, Yokohama. He remained in these endeavors until his return to the United States in 1983.
Upon return to the US Fr. David was assigned to Our Saviour Chapel in Brockton, MA where he moderated the Charismatic Prayer Group, provided weekend assistance at local parishes, and worked with more than a few individuals seeking annulment of their marriages. In 1984, at the urging of Fr. David Fitzgerald, SA, the guardian in Brockton that time, he became deeply involved in Worldwide Marriage Encounter, giving Encounter weekends, and eventually becoming coordination priest in the South Shore area. He continued his involvement with WWME in Canada, both in British Columbiaand Nova Scotia, and spent several years on the National Board, representing both ends of the country as his assignments brought him to each Province.
St. Paul’s parish on East Cordova Street, Vancouver, is in one of the most economically challenged area of Canada. Usually described as being in the heart of Skid Road, the resident congregants of the parish lived at the margins of society. As pastor there Fr. David was intimately involved with the various social/religious institutions ministering to the local population. Five and a half years of his six-year incumbency was also spent as quarter-time Catholic Chaplain to the Vancouver Pretrial Services Center, located on the next block from the Church. During his time there he met men accused of just about every crime on the books. Some of them were very scary folks indeed.
Upon completion of his assignment to St. Paul’s, Vancouver Fr. David was granted a sabbatical spent in San Antonio, TX, Cuernavaca, Mexico, and Dublin, Ireland where he earned a master’s degree in ecumenism. In late 1994 Fr. David took up residence in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia and served as Ecumenical Officer for the Archdiocese of Halifax while providing weekend assistance at St. John Vianney Parish in Lower Sackville. Eventually he was appointed administrator of Immaculate Conception Parish in Dartmouth. After two years in that position, he was appointed pastor of Pope John XXIII Parish in Cole Harbour, a suburb of Halifax. During his pastorate in Cole Harbour Fr. David was elected to the Archdiocesan Presbyteral Council and as Dean of the Dartmouth Deanery.
It was also during these years that Fr. David began the Paul Wattson Lecture series in cooperation with Atlantic School of Theology and Saint Mary’s University. That annual series of lectures on ecumenical topics continues to this day. He was also appointed to the Board of Governors at AST (an inter-denominational seminary) by Archbishop Austin Burke, the Archdiocese of Halifax being one of the three founding parties.
After six years at Pope John XXIII, he accepted an assignment to St. Joseph the Worker Parish in Richmond, BC, and Ecumenical Officer for the Archdiocese of Vancouver. He remained at St. Joseph the Worker for thirteen years until the Friars’ administration decided to completely withdraw from British Columbia. Upon departure from Richmond Fr. David was again granted a sabbatical which he spent in the Holy Land, three months in Greater Jerusalem at Tantur, and three months in Beit Sahour, the last predominantly Christian village in Palestine. Close by Bethlehem, Beit Sahour is the traditional site of the Shepherds’ Field.
Following his return from sabbatical Fr. David was assigned to St. Paul Friary at Graymoor where he spent two years, except for five and half months spent with his “brother” in Phoenix, AZ, where he was stranded during the height of the pandemic.
In August 2021 Fr. David returned to Brockton after a hiatus of thirty-five years and is assigned to coordinate liturgy at the Chapel as well as minister to and with the Tertiary Friars who were accepted into the Atonement Family under the guardianship of Fr. Gerry DiGeralamo, SA. of happy memory.
Bro. Thomas Banacki, SA
Brother Thomas Banacki, SA, is Guardian of Chapel of Our Savior Manager of the Gift Shop. Br. Thomas received the Franciscan Federation’s annual Peacemaker award at their 2014 annual conference in St. Louis, MO, for his 24 years of service as part of the community. Br. Thomas was nominated by the Atonement Friars’ General Council for the ministries he has carried out with humility and simplicity as an authentic Franciscan.
Each year, these awards are presented to Franciscans whose ministries reflect St. Francis and St. Clare. He has worked with the homeless and addicted at St. Christopher’s Inn at Graymoor. Brother Thomas entered the Atonement Friars in 1990 and professed his final vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience to the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement in 1992. He is known and appreciated for his Franciscan hospitality and his ability to reach out to those who feel they do not fit in.
Bro. Louis Marek, SA
Bro. Louis Marek is currently serving as administrator of the Chapel of Our Savior in Brockton. A Friar of the Atonement for over 50 years, Brother is a native Rhode Islander, attended local Catholic schools, and received degrees from Providence College and Boston College. Other ministries over the years included parish assignments, service as Secretary-General of the community, and teaching in a Catholic high school and parish RCIA programs.