Associate Spotlight: Rob Cammarata, Amityville

Rob Cammarata, an associate of the Sisters of St. Dominic of Amityville,  will be leading a special workshop called “Faith Divided: Christian Nationalism and the Challenge of Catholic Social Teaching” on April 10 at 7PM via Zoom sponsored by the We Move Forward Together Committee.  

Christian Nationalism is the belief that our country is defined by Christianity, and that the government should promote it above others.   This workshop “is very relevant to our faith and our world today,” said Cammarata.  It asks important questions like: “Why are we divided and how can we, who are disciples of Jesus, help heal the divisions that exist, especially at this point in time?” 

Rob is a seasoned preacher, who has been pursuing a calling in the Church for decades. He earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees concentrating in Theology and Management/Administration.  His first full-time ministry was as a Director of Religious Education and Youth Ministry at a parish in New Jersey.  He also worked as a Director of Religious Education at St. Peter of Alcantara in Port Washington, NY and St. Gertrude in Bayville, NY.  

But most people on Long Island know Rob for his role as Director of the Diocesan Office of Parish Stewardship.  He was a popular speaker, encouraging others to use their gifts to connect with God and the community. That position opened him up to the larger Church.  “I was invited to become a speaker and workshop presenter at many international and national Catholic conferences,” he explained.  He also co-wrote a children’s book called, “Taking Care of God’s Gifts: Stewardship, a Way of Life” with another Amityville Dominican Associate Laurie Whitfield.  It was printed three times in 11 countries! 

Most recently, he has served at parishes.  At St. Brigid’s Church in Westbury, he served as Pastoral Associate for Administration for 17 years.  Now, you can find him at St. Matthew’s Church in Dix Hills as the Parish Business Manager.  

In between these full-time ministries, he has inspired others as a teacher.  He taught theology and Catholic Social Teaching courses at Molloy University in Rockville Centre, NY.  He also taught adult courses at the Pastoral Formation Institute — School of Missionary Disciples for the Diocese, as well as leading in-service courses on theology for teachers.  He has inspired engaged couples by leading them through Pre-Cana courses before their wedding days. With Dominican Associate Suzanne Richards, this past summer, he taught a leadership program for Dominican interns.  They will be leading that course again this summer! 

Cammarata was inspired to teach by the wonderful Dominican sisters he encountered as a student at Our Holy Redeemer in Freeport, NY and St. Agnes High School in Rockville Centre, NY.  

“The many Dominican sisters I had for teachers and colleagues that I came to know over the years, in my opinion, all were signs of ‘joy and hope’ – living out the Holy Preaching in wonderful ways,” said Cammarata.

Cammarata has been an associate for 14 years!  He is grateful to Amityville Dominican Sister Marjorie McGregor who, along with others, who encouraged him to bond with the Congregation.  “ It has been and continues to be a wonderful journey,” said Cammarata.   “I believe that being a Dominican Associate, for me, is one of the most wonderful ways I can live out my discipleship: connected with a community of prophets, teachers, and healers.  It can’t get much better than being around all the wisdom, knowledge, and wonderful faith life these women espouse and foster!  They are truly great women of our church – and their work and ministry has helped tens of thousands of God’s people.  Amazing!”