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Deborah Brown 1956-2021


Deborah Brown, who had the distinction of being the first layperson installed as pastoral administrator in the Diocese of Buffalo, died July 5, 2021, at Mercy Hospital in Buffalo. She was 65.

Brown was born on May 2, 1956, to Andrew and Audrey (Klein) Ceglinski in Buffalo. She spent her working life serving her town and her faith. She served as associate director of Religious Education for the Diocese of Buffalo, director of Spiritual Life at St. John the Baptist in Lockport, adjunct Con Ed instructor at Christ the King Seminary, and pastoral associate at the University at Buffalo Newman Center.

On Feb. 11, 2018, Bishop Richard J. Malone installed Brown as pastoral administrator of St. John the Baptist Parish in Alden, a role she gained through the diocesan pastoral administrator program, which invited deacons, vowed religious, and laypeople to lead parishes. In this role, she took charge of the temporal affairs of the parish.

Brown earned a degree in Criminal Justice from Erie Community College, a bachelor of science in Sociology from Clarkson College in Pottsdam, a master of arts in Pastoral Ministry from Christ the King Seminary in East Aurora, and a certificate for Parish Administrator from Christ the King Seminary.

Brown and her husband, Kevin, started their family in Texas and then moved back to Western New York, settling in Gasport, where she also served as community service trustee for the Royalton Hartland Community Library, and was a member of the Royalton Hartland School District Board of Education.

Besides her mother, Brown is survived by her mother, husband, sons Jason (Dana) Brown, Jeffrey (Cara) Brown, Jonathon Brown, and Jeremy Brown, and grandchildren.

There will be a parish memorial Mass on Thursday, July 8 at 7 p.m. at St. John the Baptist in Alden. A wake will be held on Friday, July 9 from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. at Prudden & Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee St., Lockport.

The funeral Mass will take place at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 10, at the Newman Center at the University at Buffalo North Campus, 496 Skinnersville Road, Amherst, with Bishop Michael W. Fisher presiding. Priests are welcome to concelebrate and deacons are invited to vest at both Masses. Interment will be in Cold Springs Cemetery.


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