Diane Quintal, award-winning catechist, retires after 38 years of ministry work

Diane Quintal, most recently the director of Catechesis and Faith Formation, retired in May.

During her four-year tenure at the diocesan level, she oversaw the Basic and Master Catechist formation programs, diocesan convocations, parish leader formation days and retreats, RCIA training and support for deanery coordinators.

“It’s really just been an honor and a privilege to serve my Lord and my God,” Quintal said during her retirement gathering May 7.

Her journey in catechetical ministry began in Ft. Benning, Georgia. She served as the coordinator of Religious Education in Warren Barracks, Germany, and in Ft. Irwin, California, before she and her husband, Jim, settled in North Carolina.

A Magna Cum Laude graduate of Wadhams Hall Seminary College, Diane directed religious education and sacramental preparation programs at St. Patrick Church, Fayetteville; Sacred Heart Church, Dunn; Campbell University Campus Ministry; St. Mary Cathedral & Notre Dame Church, Ogdensburg, NY; Holy Infant Church, Durham; St. Andrew the Apostle Church, Apex and St. Stephen the First Martyr Church, Sanford.

“I think there are very few occupations where you can actually be involved in what you believe,” she said. “I’m happy that I have the benefit of getting paid for that but the bottom line is that I would have done it for nothing just because I love what I do.”

Upon retirement, Diane will continue to serve the Church as the chair of the Worship & Environment Committee at her parish, St Stephen the First Martyr.

“My gratitude to everyone for allowing me to serve for so many years and not just the laity but the clergy. I’ve learned so much from so many and I’ve been pushed to the next level by some of them so I’ve honed my skills over the years, I’m just grateful to the people,” she said.

For their part, many people are thankful for the work of Quintal, who won the Mary Dowling Master Catechist of the Year award in 2013 for her work in Sanford.

Katie Fortunato, director of Elementary Faith Formation at St. Andrew Church in Apex, first met Quintal 14 years ago.

“She mentored me throughout my own formation journey from catechist to catechetical leader,” Fortunato said. “Diane is the consummate professional. Regardless of the situation, you can look to her to lead with professionalism, courtesy and respect. She is highly knowledgeable about our Catholic faith and she has long served as a resource for me with questions I had. She is a true disciple and deeply devoted to God.”

Quintal goes above what’s expected, Fortunato said.

“Diane spent a week in Colorado pursuing registered directors’ training for RAINBOWS so that she could better serve the needs of children in our diocese experiencing loss. Working with grieving children was certainly not a part of her job description, but she saw a ministry need and answered the call,” she added.

“She may be stepping back from her work in the diocese but her passion for living out her faith and serving God and the Kingdom, I suspect, will not retire.”