The following story appeared in the August 26 Idaho Catholic Register.
Natasha and Andrew Furphy with their children. Furphy is the new director of Youth and Young Adult Evangelization. (Courtesy photo/Sophia Chumich)
Bishop Peter Christensen has named Andrew Furphy, a former FOCUS missionary and currently administrator at St. Paul’s Student Center on the Boise State campus, as the new director of Youth and Young Adult Evangelization for the Diocese of Boise.
He will begin duties Sept. 1, replacing Deacon Sal Carranza, who, on that same day, begins duties as the director of the Permanent Diaconate. Deacon Carranza replaces Deacon Bob Barros-Bailey who is retiring.
When Furphy, 29, learned that the Diocese was looking for a new director of Youth and Young Adult Evangelization, he was not planning on applying. “However, the Lord had other plans and continued to put it on my heart. I was then encouraged to apply. When Bishop Peter offered me the position, I gladly accepted.”
Furphy grew up in Tucson, Ariz., as a member of a family that attended Mass weekly. His grandfather had a profound influence on his faith life. “I remember he would bring me to a church after we would go for a hike to pray and give thanks to God.”
He enrolled at Northern Arizona University where he says he had “a deep encounter with our Lord and worked to change my life so as to pursue Him.” After his freshman year, his grandpa passed away. “I remember the only action I felt I could take in that moment was to get to the Adoration chapel, something he instilled in me.”
During his time in college, he met his wife, Natasha, as well as the missionaries from FOCUS, the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. “The missionaries journeyed along with me in my faith life so when it came to graduation I knew that I must open the door to God for the possibility of me being a missionary.”
Furphy joined FOCUS, first sent as a missionary to Cal State-Fullerton. After two years there, he and Natasha married and moved to Boise so that he could become the team director for the FOCUS missionaries on the BSU campus.
After serving three years as team director and having the first two of their children, he and his wife decided to end their work with FOCUS. Bishop Peter invited him to become the director of campus ministry and administrator at St. Paul’s Student Center on the BSU campus.
“During these past three years I was blessed to work with different chaplains, help plan and organize two local SEEK conferences, and work along-side Father Nathan Dail (the current chaplain) to set a trajectory for the ministry.”
“I am sad to leave St. Paul’s but am very excited for Father Nathan, and to see how he continues to lead the ministry,” Furphy said.
He looks forward now to working with youth ministers from across the geographically expansive ) diocese. “I am excited to enter into relationship with our ministers serving our youth and young adults. It will be a great honor to support and build them up so that they can flourish not only in their ministries, but as beloved sons and daughters of Our Father.”
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