Parish Council

Nativity’s Parish Council

Nativity’s Parish Council is a consultative council charged with the spiritual and pastoral development of the parish.  This council serves as an advisory board to the pastor in regards to the parish’s needs, hopes, and dreams.  Each member was chosen through a discernment process and will serve a 3-year term.


Father Bob Cilinski and Father Cedric Wilson


Melinda Apgar

Melinda (Mindy) Apgar – Melinda (Mindy) and her family have been members of Nativity since 2002 when her husband was assigned to the Pentagon.  She holds a MS in teaching and has completed academic requirements in substance abuse counseling. Presently, she is employed by Fairfax County Public Schools as a substitute teacher.  Melinda taught religious education for ten years, in addition to serving as a 7th grade coordinator and a CYO parent volunteer when her two daughters were younger. (Her oldest daughter was the very first female altar server at Nativity and the first female altar server in the Arlington Diocese to serve with Bishop Loverde!)  Melinda is a current member of the Art and Environment Committee and is a member of the Laundry Love ministry.  As a breast cancer survivor, she personally supports its cure and research.

Mindy most often attends the 7:30am Sunday morning mass.


Cindy Borer

Cynthia Borer –  Cynthia’s family have been parishioners at the Church of the Nativity since 1996 to present.  During this time they have all been blessed to serve our parish in different ministries.

Cynthia is a retired school teacher with thirty-three years of teaching experience in the classroom and five years as a school vice principal, even teaching many levels and subjects at Nativity Catholic School.  For the parish, Cynthia is a Eucharistic Minister, a sacristan, a 3rd grade religious education teacher, a member of the Altar Guild, a member of the Women of Nativity, and most recently a member of the Panera Bread donation outreach  for the Lorton Community Action Center.  In addition, she has taught Vacation Bible School during the past two summers.  She continues to substitute teach at Nativity School when available.

Cynthia most often attends the 12:45pm Sunday afternoon mass.

Bill Canavan

Bill Canavan – Bill Canavan has been a Nativity parishioner for almost 20 years and is employed as a Department of Defense contractor.  He is a member of Nativity’s Knights of Columbus Father Sikora Council and an usher at our Saturday evening mass.  Bill is also Nativity’s lay leader for the annual Bishop’s Lenten Appeal.  Bill and his wife Janet relocated to West Springfield after a 30-year US Air Force career.  They have a daughter, Kelli.

Bill most often attends the 5:00pm Saturday evening mass.


Bob Corsi – Bob Corsi has been a parishioner since 1984. He has been married to his wife for 44+ years and they have one daughter who is married and has one granddaughter.  He is a retired Air Force officer with 28 years of service and has been a member of the Senior Executive Service in the Air Force since retirement.  He is a registered professional engineer since 1978 and belongs to several professional societies; elected to the Board for the Senior Executive Association for 2014-2017; and was inducted into the West Virginia University Academy  of Industrial Engineers and serves on their Visiting Committee.  As a member of the Father Sikora Council Knights of Columbus he has been involved in many of Nativity’s activities since becoming a knight in 2000.  He started and ran the annual Nativity Choir’s Christmas Concert from 2003-2008 and runs Nativity’s Appalachia Home Building effort since 2001 that has built 16 homes for some of the poorest families in our country.

Bob most often attends the 7:30am Sunday mass.

James Crawford

James Crawford – Vice Admiral James Crawford III is the 43rd judge advocate general of the Navy.  James is the principal military legal counsel to the secretary of the Navy and chief of Naval Operations and serves as the Department of Defense representative for Ocean Policy Affairs (REPOPA).  He also leads the 2,300 attorneys, enlisted legalmen and civilian employees of the worldwide Navy JAG Corps community.

James was born in Charlotte, North Carolina. He graduated from Belmont Abbey College in 1979. He was commissioned through the JAG Corps Student Program, and, in 1983, graduated from the University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill. He later earned a Master of Laws degree (Ocean and Coastal Law) from the University of Miami (Florida) School of Law and a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College.

James’s children attend Nativity’s Catholic school and his family supports Catholic education.


Melinda Engelbrektsson – Melinda is a former special education teacher who followed her Army officer husband around the US and Europe while raising three children.  After settling in Northern Virginia, they joinedd the Church of the Nativity almost 15 years ago.  She is a sacristan, a Eucharistic Minister, as well as a member of the Altar Guild, Art and Environment Ministry, and the Altar Server Committee.  She has also been an assistant teacher in the religious education program.  Melinda has been actively involved with Operation Starfish since visiting Haiti in 2007 and, most recently, started “Stella Marina” (making birthing kits for the midwives in Haiti) with Meg Hanrahan.

She is grateful for this opportunity to serve on the Parish Council and seeing where God and Father Bob will lead us!

Melinda most often attends the 11:00am Sunday morning mass.

Soledad Olivera - pic

Soledad Olivera – Soledad Olivera has been a parishioner of the Church of the Nativity since 2002.  She began her service for her parish, as a lector for the Hispanic Mass- through invitation from a dear friend.  In 2006, Soledad was asked to take on the role as coordinator for the Ministry of Hispanic Lectors, a role in which she accepted humbly.  In 2010 she became a Eucharistic Minister. She currently serves as an active Pro-Life Leader and Spanish counselor for women in need of help and advice when contemplating abortion. As a member of the Pro-Life Committee she also coordinates and participates in the 40 Days for Life- Falls Church, VA and the March for Life. Soledad is also a Project Rachel promoter in her parish. In 2015, she joined Father Cilinski’s Parish Council.

Soledad is a native of Peru. She resides in Burke, VA with her husband of 26 years.  They have 4 children and 1 granddaughter. Soledad enjoys staying active and exploring nature with her German Shepherd puppy.  She is a lover of music and dance and is a devoted Washington Redskins fan.

“I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons. He has not created me for naught. I shall do good, I shall do His work.” -Cardinal John Henry Newman

Soledad most often attends the 7:00pm Saturday evening mass.


John Ostrowski – John is an active duty Marine, who with his wife Cheryl and five children, have been nativity parishioners since 2007, with a three year break when they went overseas on a military assignment.  John is active in Nativity’s Knights of Columbus Council and he and Cheryl are Eucharistic Ministers.  Cheryl is a religious education teacher and John is a substitute teacher.  The 5 Ostrowski children have all attended Nativity’s school, with one there currently in the 8th grade. John and his family love the community of Nativity and all it has to offer.  They are grateful for all that Nativity has done to enrich their lives.  John is excited to be able to contribute to Nativity in the capacity of Parish Council member.

John most often attends the 5:00pm Saturday evening mass or the 9:00am Sunday morning mass.

Joe Pettit

Joe Pettit – Joe and his wife, Mary, and their two sons were original members of Nativity.  More recently, after a career as an administrator at Georgetown University, Joe has been involved in several community service programs of the Parish: Knights of Columbus, a Family Support Group and Concerned Fairfax, an advocacy group, of the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Northern Virginia, VOICE (Virginia Organized for Interfaith Community Involvement) and JustFaith’s Engaging Spirituality.

Joe most often attends the Saturday 5:00pm mass.

Jared Ponmakha – Jared Ponmakha is currently a sophomore at Bishop Ireton High School.  He is on the Cardinal varsity wrestling and golf teams. Outside school, he enjoys golfing on the weekends and working on his 2nd degree belt in Taekwondo. An active member in Nativity’s CYM for the past 4 years, he looks forward to participating in his 3rd work camp this summer. He is grateful for being selected as part of Nativity’s Parish Council and looks forward to encouraging other youths in becoming active participants in the Church’s community.

sara prince

Sara Prince  – Sara has been a parishioner of Nativity since her family was stationed in Northern Virginia in 1998.  While in high school, she was an active member of youth ministry, religious education, and the youth choir.  After studying choral music education in college (Go Florida State Seminoles!), Sara returned to Northern Virginia and started attending Nativity again.  Shortly after, she took over directing the youth choir.  Along with other Nativity parishioners, Sara noticed a need for ministry opportunities for young adults and helped create the Catholic Life Young Adult Ministry.  Most recently, Sara started directing the Cornerstone Choir, a contemporary choir for adults.  In Sara’s non-Nativity life, she is a middle school choir director in Fairfax County Public Schools.

Sara attends the 11:00am and 5:30pm Sunday masses. where she directs the choirs that serve at each.

Maureen Sawyer – Maureen is a 17-year old senior at Lake Braddock and has been a parishioner of Nativity for 13 years.  She is a cantor in the Youth choir, has attended three Workcamps with CYM, and has participated in VBS and Living Stations of the Cross for several years as well. This summer, Maureen went on the Fish 4 Hope mission trip to Haiti where she saw firsthand the difference that Food for the Poor, Operation Starfish, and Fish 4 Hope are making there.  She is currently finishing her Girl Scout Gold Award focusing on spreading awareness of educational poverty in countries like Haiti.  Maureen also recently attended the Papal Pilgrimage to Philadelphia and the Arlington Diocese Youth Rally.

Maureen most often attends the 11:00am Sunday mass, where she sings with the Youth Choir.


Aileen Spoone – Aileen has been a Nativity parishioner since 1999.  She serves as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist, is a catechist for religious education, and is a cantor in the Traditional Choir.  She is also involved in RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) and has been an RCIC (Rite of Christian Initiation of Children) teacher for 3 years.  Aileen is married and has an 11 year old daughter, Molly, who is an altar server and one of her CCD students.

Aileen most often attends the 9:00am Sunday morning mass where she sings with the Traditional Choir.

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