Two Make First Vows

Two monks at Saint Vincent Archabbey made first profession of monastic vows in the Saint Vincent Basilica before Archabbot Douglas R. Nowicki, O.S.B. on July 10. Making first vows were Brother Elijah Cirigliano, O.S.B., of Waccabuc, New York, and Brother Nathanael Polinski, O.S.B. of Duquesne.

Brother Elijah is the son of Caesar and Patricia Cirigliano of Waccabuc, New York. His sister is Patricia Cirigliano Kohn of Weston, Connecticut. His brother, Caesar, is from Nashville, Tennessee. He is a 1990 graduate of John Jay High School. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in English from Duke University in 1993. Brother Elijah entered the novitiate at Saint Vincent Archabbey in 2005.

Brother Nathanael is the son of Mary Ann Polinski of Duquesne and the late Raymond E. Polinski. He has two brothers, Raymond J. of New Kensington and Richard V. of Bethel Park. He is a 1983 graduate of Serra Catholic High School and earned a bachelor of science degree in metallurgical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in 1987. He received a master of business administration degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1993. Brother Nathanael entered the novitiate at Saint Vincent Archabbey in 2005.

In addition to the profession of first vows, four other monks renewed their monastic profession. They included: Brother Matthias E. Martinez, O.S.B., of Bernardstown, Massachusetts; Brother Bonaventure J. Curtis, O.S.B., of Los Angeles; Father Peter Augustine Pierjok, O.S.B., of Nashville, Illinois; and Brother Michael Miller, O.S.B., of Allison Park.

Brother Matthias is the son of Edelmiro Martinez, Jr., and Lynda C. Martinez of Bernardston, Massachusetts. He is a 1993 graduate of Northfield Mt. Hermon High School. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy in 1999 from Saint John Seminary College, and has also studied at Babson College and Saint John Seminary. He has one sister, Janalyn Pentlow, of Astoria, New York. In 2004, he was named assistant archivist and assistant master of cermonies/ sacristan at Saint Vincent Archabbey. In 2005 he was named assistant curator of the archabbey music collection. He made first profession of monastic vows on Friday, July 9, 2004, in the Saint Vincent Basilica before Archabbot Douglas R. Nowicki, O.S.B.

Brother Bonaventure Curtis, O.S.B., a native of southern California, was raised in Minneapolis, MN and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Minnesota in 1970. After a successful business venture in insurance, he entered Western State University / Thomas Jefferson College of Law, San Diego, in the fall of 1975 and completed his studies for the Juris Doctorate degree in December of 1977. He was admitted to the State of California Bar Association the following year. Brother Bonaventure has a sister, Loretta Roberson of Los Angeles. His wife, Roswitha, originally from Innsbruck, Austria, died in 2000. They had three daughters: Christina, Stephanie Ann and Katherine Rose, all of whom live in San Diego.

Brother Bonaventure has taught freshman composition and a business law course at Saint Vincent College. He also works with the Saint Vincent Archabbey Vocation Director, serves as an assistant in the Archabbot’s office and is enrolled in pre-theology studies at Saint Vincent Seminary. Brother Bonaventure made first profession of monastic vows on July 10, 2006 in the Saint Vincent Basilica. Archabbot Douglas R. Nowicki, O.S.B., received the first vows.

Father Peter Augustine Pierjok, O.S.B., is the son of the late Harry A. Pierjok, Sr., and Emma L. Pierjok. His sister is Roseanne Pierjok King of Rolla, Missouri. He is a 1965 graduate of Nashville Community High School, Nashville, Illinois. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in design from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, in 1969, studied philosophy at both Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois, and at Saint Vincent College, and earned a master of divinity degree from Saint Vincent Seminary in 1987. Following a fifteen year career in sales and marketing, he made perpetual vows with the Benedictine Community of Saint Augustine, Peoria on April 16, 1987. He was ordained a deacon on May 23, 1987, and a priest on May 28, 1988 by the Most Reverend Edward W. O’Rourke, Bishop of Peoria.

He was named associate director of Highwoods Learning Center, Washington, Illinois, in 1986 and director in May of 1988. At that time he was also named associate director of Saint Augustine Manor and Conference Center. In June 1990, Bishop John J. Myers appointed him assistant pastor of Saint Vincent DePaul Parish, Peoria. In 1992 he was appointed pastor of Saint Mary Church, Kickapoo, Illinois, and in June of 1999 pastor of Saint Jude Church, Peoria. He served as pastor of St. Mary Church, Henry, Illinois; Immaculate Conception Church, Lacon, Illinois and Saint Joseph Church, Henry, Illinois from June 2003 until June 2004 when he was released by the Diocese of Peoria to pursue a monastic vocation at Saint Vincent Archabbey. Father Peter Augustine completed the novitiate and professed first vows on July 10, 2005.

In July 2005 Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, OSB appointed him Assistant Chaplain at Latrobe Area Hospital, Assistant Guest Master, and Socius of Novices. In addition, Father Peter Augustine regularly goes out on missions to various parishes and to the Carmelite sisters.

Brother Michael Joseph Miller, O.S.B., is the son of Donald and Jo-Anne Miller of Allison Park. He has two sisters: Jean Lowden of McKees Rocks, and Nancy Miller of Allison Park, and a brother, John Miller of Centerville, Ohio. Brother Michael attended Saint Mary’s grade school in Glenshaw, and graduated from Shaler Area High School in Glenshaw in 1979. He studied philosophy at Duquesne University and earned a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy in 1985 from Don Bosco College. He is enrolled at Saint Vincent Seminary studying for a master of arts degree in systematic theology. In 2005 Brother Michael was assigned to work as a Sacristan and in 2006, he was assigned to assist with summer retreats. He made simple profession of monastic vows at Saint Vincent Archabbey Basilica on July 13, 2005.