“Chapel mom” unites faith and work


Photo by Maggie Giroux

Many who step into the foyer of Christ the King Chapel are not aware that everything runs smoothly because of many hours of behind-the-scenes work, undertaken by a woman with a heart to serve.

Pam Salatino, whose smile and radiating personality greet all who enter the chapel office, has been the coordinator of the Chapel Ministries at Franciscan University since October 2006. She came to work for Franciscan University, she said, in order to incorporate her faith even more deeply into her everyday life. “The love of Christ is why I am here,” she said.

Salatino takes great joy in being able to serve others, especially by directing new students and families who are transitioning into a new environment. “The most rewarding part of my job,” she said, “is working with the students and the wonderful friars on campus.”

It is evident how much the students on campus love her; she earned the title “Chapel Mom” in May 2014 because of the impact she has on the students who look up to her as a role model. It would be hard to find someone who invests more deeply in the students and faculty whom she works with.

“We are a team here,” she said. “If you need me, I will be there for you.”

Because of the bonds Salatino forms with students, she misses past classes and said she will miss the seniors when they move on, but values the time she spent with them. “Many of the graduates have sent me cards in the mail to update me on how they are doing,” said Salatino.” It is really beautiful.”

Salatino’s job includes coordinating room reservations, arranging prayer intentions, handling payments, sign-ups and mass kits, and supervising receptionists, night managers and mass announcements. She even fills in to be a sacristan and sound tech when students are on break through the year.

Perpetual adoration at the Portiuncula chapel, which plays such an integral role in the life of the university, is organized by Salatino, who set up the online portal where students can register for time slots.

Salatino’s advice to freshman coming into the school is to get involved and go to masses, confession, praise and worship and any other events offered.

In her spare time, Salatino can be found cooking, reading and spending time with her husband of 32 years and family. Some of her favorite reads are “A Conversation With God” by Francis Fernandez and the daily Magnificat.

Salatino, whose patron saint is St. Anthony of Padua, also has a strong devotion to Our Lady and the Holy Rosary.

Through her integration of faith into her daily work, Salatino spreads the love of Christ to each person she encounters. She succeeds in living out one of her favorite quotes, from St. Teresa of Calcutta: “Wherever God puts you, that is your vocation. It is not what we do, but how much we love to do it.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *