About The Formation Team

Sarah Bowser

Coordinator, Children’s Formation
Sarah Bowser is humbled to serve as the Coordinator of Elementary Faith Formation at Saint Francis. She was born and raised in Michigan, and graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2016- so she’s a big Irish football fan! Her and her husband, Brandon, also love Blue Devil basketball, as he pursues his PhD in Chemistry at Duke. They welcomed with joy their first child, Olivia Frances, in May of 2019. Olivia is full of energy and has brought a love to their lives they never knew before. Sarah holds a Master’s in Theological Studies from the University of Dallas with a concentration in Catholic Secondary Education.

Thomas Bulick

Coordinator, Middle School Formation

Thomas joined the Formation Team as the Coordinator of Middle School Formation in June 2017. Thomas graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill and worked at Newman Catholic Student Center Parish at UNC for their K-8 Catechesis program. In 2021, he completed a Masters of Theological Studies from the University of Dallas, with a thesis on digital evangelization. He leads formation for youth in grades 6 through 8 and coordinates preparation for the sacrament of Confirmation.

Tim Hetzel

Coordinator of Liturgy and Sacraments

As the Coordinator of Liturgy and Sacraments, Tim works to form and minister to over 800 liturgical ministry volunteers at our parish. Tim works seamlessly between Formation and Liturgy, highlighting the collaborative necessity of these two important aspects of parish life.  In this capacity he is an important resource not only for our weekly liturgical life, but also for sacramental preparation and rites.

Marisa Ferrara

Coordinator of Youth Ministry

Marisa graduated from New England Conservatory in 2011 and taught music and led adult and youth ministry in Massachusetts until August of 2018 when she relocated to Raleigh. Her husband’s job was relocated to Raleigh. Marisa ministers to teens and college-aged young adults. She is married with a daughter and has two scruffy mutts. In the warm weather you’ll find her on a Vespa scooter or at the pool. Her time at St. Francis is life-giving and she learns new things every day. Our teen Peer Ministers are on fire with their faith. They’re inclusive and ready to show all the parish teens how awesome life is when you put Christ first. Join us!

Tara Moore

Coordinator, Play and Pray
Tara has been working with the Play and Pray program for many years and recently accepted the Coordinator of Play and Pray position.  We are excited to have Tara as part of our team.

Martina Dumberger

Administrative Specialist

Martina supports the Formation Team in the logistical aspects of sacramental preparation for Baptism (ages 7& under), First Reconciliation, First Eucharist, Youth Confirmation and Marriage. Her tasks include preparing and facilitating the registration process, managing the databases, guiding families through their sacramental preparation journey, recruiting and managing volunteers, among others. She enjoys working with her team and serving her faith community.

Patti Panizza

Administrative Specialist, Communications and Registration

Patti joined the Formation team in October of 2016. She supports the Team by coordinating Formation event registrations, newsletters for Cross Walk, Cross Train, Cross Road and Home School and also maintains the Formation web pages. Anticipating her oldest son’s graduation from The Franciscan School year, she wanted to continue to be a part of the St Francis community where she’s been a parishioner for 20+ years. Patti was born and raised in the Boston suburbs, and enjoys spending time with her family, exercising, a good cup of coffee, and reading in her spare time.

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