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About Us - Parish Staff

Fr. Gregg Gorczyca- Pastor Fr. Gregg Gorczyca- Pastor
Fr. Gregg Gorczyca returned to St. John the Evangelist as parish administrator, following the passing of Fr. Ted Schmitt in December of 2014 and was formally installed as our pastor on Sept. 19, 2015. Born and raised in Rzeszow/Strzyzow (south-east corner of Poland) Fr. Gregg entered Rzeszow Seminary in 1997. He came to the U.S. in 2001 to continue his seminary education at the Bishop Abramowicz Preparatory Seminary in Chicago. His first parish assignment as a seminarian happened to be at St. John the Evangelist Parish with Fr. Bob Tonelli and Fr. Fred Pesek. After studying English at UIC, he went on to study theology at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, and on May 21, 2005 was ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Having served as an associate pastor at St. Pascal’s Parish in Chicago, St. Theresa's Parish in Palatine and St. William's Parish in Chicago, Fr. Gregg is very excited to be our new pastor and is grateful to Our Lord and Our Blessed Mother for this opportunity. It is a joy for him to see that St. John’s is an active, prayerful, and faithful parish and school community. To contact Fr. Gregg, please email him at frgregg@mystjohns.org.

Fr. Nathaniel Payne- Associate Pastor Fr. Nathaniel Payne- Associate Pastor
Born and raised in the Chicagoland suburbs, Fr. Nate is one of eleven children. Working for a number of years in the family business, he entered the college seminary for the Archdiocese of Chicago at Loyola University in 2003. He graduated from Loyola in 2006, earning a degree in Philosophy. Afterwards, attending the University of St. Mary of the Lake for his studies in Theology, Fr. Nate was ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of Chicago in 2010. His first assignment as priest was to serve as associate pastor of St. Mary of the Annunciation – Fremont Center, where he has served from 2010 until the present. Grateful to Almighty God for all the blessings of life, Fr. Nate looks forward now to becoming a part of this vibrant Catholic parish.
Deacon Larry Rybicki - Business Manager Deacon Larry Rybicki - Business Manager
Deacon Larry Rybicki brings a wide range of skills to the position of Business Manager. Larry has over 30 years experience in the IT field. He started his career in computer operations and programming. His acknowledged people skills and his ability to develop and implement innovative solutions quickly lead to a series of management positions leading IT computer security teams across the US and Canada.

In November 2008 then Pastor Fr. Robert Tonelli, asked Deacon Larry to become Business Manager of St. John’s. As Business Manager, he has developed and submitted plans to revitalize our school and to balance the budget to fully meet our financial obligations as a parish.

Deacon Larry and his wife Mary have been an integral part of St. John’s community for over 30 years. Together they raised their three children at St. John’s. Beginning in 1994, Larry entered the Deacon Formation Program and studied at University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary. He completed his studies and was ordained in April 1998 as a Permanent Deacon. Since his ordination, Deacon Larry has served at St. John’s and has also been appointed the Deanery Deaconate Coordinator for Vicariate 1E by Francis Cardinal George.

In addition to his involvement in St. John’s and the Archdiocese, he has also been very active in the local community. He served as a Streamwood Plan Commissioner from 1992 through 1999 and as an elected Streamwood Village Trustee from 1999 through 2007.

Larry hails from the ‘Southside’ of Chicago where he attended St. Michael’s Catholic school in the “Back of the Yards” neighborhood. His family moved to Southern California where he attended high school and junior college. He returned to Chicago in 1971 and attended the Computer Tech Institute, graduating in 1972.
Mary Ellyn Billmeyer - School Principal Mary Ellyn Billmeyer - School Principal
Mary Ellyn Billmeyer received her B.A. in Elementary Education and Social Work from Clarke University in Dubuque, Iowa. After teaching for a few years, she enrolled at Concordia University in River Forest, Ill., to pursue her Master's Degree. After several years of hard work and long hours of study, she was awarded a Master of Arts (M.A.) in Administration and Supervision.

She started her career as a primary teacher and taught Kindergarten and grades 1, 3, 4, and 6. She became the principal at St. Hubert School in Hoffman Estates and remained there for twelve years. She was also the principal at St. Theresa Parish and most recently at St. Peter the Apostle School in Itasca, unfortunately, last year the Diocese of Joliet closed St. Peter's school.

Mary Ellyn and her husband Brian have been married for over 30 years and have two grown children, Jonathan and Jennifer.

Catholic education is a priority for Mary Ellyn and she is firmly committed to ensuring that Catholic education is available to all children for many years to come. She is excited and confident about making St. John's School one of the most vibrant schools in the Northwest Suburbs.
Director of Music-Valerie Oestry
Valerie has been a music director and organist for many years, and joined the staff at St. John the Evangelist in 2017. She brings with her an advanced degree in Voice Performance and plays both the organ and piano. Originally from Southeast Missouri, Valerie now calls the Chicago area her home. In addition to her ministry here, Valerie directs the Rockford Diocesan Choral for special events. She feels blessed to serve God and the people of St. John the Evangelist as looks forward to bringing all those who worship closer to the liturgy through music and song.
Mary Rybicki - Director of Religious Education Mary Rybicki - Director of Religious Education
Mary Rybicki has been active in ministry at St. John's for 30 years. She is the wife of Deacon Larry Rybicki and has earned her Certificate in Pastoral Studies from the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary.

After serving as the parish Sacrament Coordinator for more than 13 years, Mary was appointed Director of Religious Education in September of 2014.

Mary brings practical experience to her position in addition to her educational background, having raised three children in the parish. Her active participation in parish life over the years continues to inspire Mary and she says, "I believe that the Spirit is alive, vibrant, and growing at St. John's. It empowers us, enlivens us, and feeds us. I am blessed to be a part of this parish family."
Elizabeth DeSimon - Youth Ministry Coordinator Elizabeth DeSimon - Youth Ministry Coordinator
Elizabeth (Liz) DeSimon is passionate about her faith and loves sharing it with teens! She and her husband, Richard, have been married for 31 years and have three adult children. They are also blessed with two beautiful grandsons. She has lived in Bartlett for 25 years.

In the spring of 2001, Liz played a key role in retaining Cultivation Ministries, consultants for Youth Ministry, at St. Peter Damian. The goal was to form a dynamic, disciple-making youth ministry based on the USCCB document, “Renewing the Vision: A Framework for Catholic Youth Ministry”. She also began a two year training process to become a Youth Minister and completed her training in May of 2003.

C.R.U.S.H. (Catholic Religion Understood Spiritually Here) was founded in the fall of 2001. The name was chosen by the founding peer ministry team and the first event they planned was a Hayride. In this busy and connected world, C.RU.S.H. gives the teens a place where Jesus can dwell in the hearts of His young people.

In response to the need of our youth in the larger community, C.R.U.S.H. was introduced to the teens at St. John the Evangelist in July of 2010 and C.R.U.S.H now proudly calls St. John the Evangelist its home.