Then & Now: Dovalina Family

Dan and Roseanne Dovalina

In November of 1976 we moved to this beautiful area called Anaheim Hills. We were told at that time that our family would be attending Mass at Saint Norbert’s Catholic Church in Orange. Our daughter Janell made her first Holy Communion there. We were looking forward to a church being built in Anaheim Hills. Then one day a Catholic couple came to our home to inform us that a Catholic Church was being built in our area. We all became excited about our future parish.

At that time we were attending Mass at El Rancho Jr. High School cafeteria. Our son Jason made his first Holy Communion there with Father Seamus. Attending Mass at El Rancho Jr. High School became a bonding experience as we became acquainted with all our new Parishioners.

On Sunday July 29, 1979 we had our ground breaking event. It was a very memorable experience. Our first Mass was February 8, 1981 with Father Seamus Glynn. It was wonderful to see the happy faces that day and the love felt among us. Our two children Janell and Jason were looking forward to the donuts after Mass.

I will always remember the first San Antonio Fiesta. It was a big success from the very beginning. The following years I started working at the Pastry Booth and every year since. My husband Dan was one of the first Fiesta bartenders where he served for several years.

We enjoyed being involved with several ministries throughout the years. Both of us had the honor of serving as Eucharistic Ministers. Later, Dan joined the Knights of Columbus. The memory of being a Religious Education Teacher for eight years was a wonderful experience. Also, it was a privilege to sponsor four people through the RCIA.

One Sunday, Deacon Doug Cook announced that Dr. Owen Pinto, who was Mother Teresa’s doctor for 35 years, was present at our San Antonio Church. We had the pleasure of getting to know him well. He was very instrumental in helping our daughter Janell get to Calcutta India to work for Mother Teresa as a volunteer. It was such a wonderful blessing for Janell to be in the presence of Mother Teresa on a daily bases. While there she also attended her funeral. Mother Teresa is now Saint Teresa of Calcutta.

Throughout the years at San Antonio Church we have been blessed with wonderful priests and deacons. When we think of San Antonio De Padua Church we think of Father Seamus Glynn because he was the founding Pastor. His Irish humor, charm and welcoming smile will never be forgotten. Our Parish continued to be blessed with Rev. Joseph Nettekoven, Pastor Emeritus, and now, with Rev. John Neneman, Pastor, Rev. Wayne Adajar, Parochial Vicar, Deacon Doug Cook and Deacon Paul Amorino. It has been a beautiful 40 years!