It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to my “home” on the web. I am Andrew M. Boyd of Boydspace Networks, and here you can learn more about me in my simple auto-biography. I grew up in Erie, PA and attended Our Lady of Mount Carmel Elementary School. I attended Cathedral Prep where I was heavily involved in Campus Ministry and Jazz Band. I have played the saxophone since fourth grade and I was in the Cathedral Prep Jazz Band for all four years at Prep.
Jazz is a major part of my creativity. I think it allows me to better understand creativity in others and gives me a foundation for that conversation. In Jazz there are no mistakes, and I learned to listen to others. This allows for creative conversation, outside of the box, with the only limits of possibilities coming from within technology itself.
I enjoy learning about technology and I wear the title of Geek proudly (and yes, Geek must be spelled with a capital G, that’s how proud I am to wear that title.) My love of technology and the Web began when I learned I could make my own web server on my computer. It blew me away that I could do that. It wasn’t until later that I finally understood what the internet really was. People can sometimes become confused about the internet. You see, the internet is not a mythical place or an unattainable place in a physical sense. It took me until eighth grade to understand that the internet is not a place, but rather it is a communication. The internet is a network of cables that send a signal from computer to computer allowing for interaction of the signal – it allows computers to “talk” to one another. I think this is where my love of networking and network management grew from, the ability to make this process happen and connect ideas and people through technology.
My fascination with a web server led me to want to understand how to run a website. I remember learning how to make a website in Publisher for a class at Prep. That is where I got hooked on web design. I wanted to make more and more websites, but I was unhappy with how static and outdated my websites looked. I wanted to design something better, something more modern looking. Eventually, I found this thing called a CMS, a Content Management System. I was intrigued at the uses that one could find in a CMS. I learned of a CMS from Chris Pirillo. I had found his blog online and I found out he had a community of Geeks who were using this thing called WordPress. So my first CMS was WordPress.com. I was annoyed that you had to use their templates and their plugins. I wanted to expand my websites. I wanted to be able to make my sites more interactive. So I found out that you could download WordPress and build your own website. I began learning all the ins and outs of using a database and how to code in PHP. I designed my first blog with WordPress and Chris Pirillo’s free WordPress theme, WicketPixie. I used this for a long time, but became frustrated with the out of date themes and the never released updates. At that point, I decided to look around for something else. I had heard of this CMS called Joomla! but was very confused on how to use it. I designed a few websites with it, and then finally became a master at it with the help of a very good friend from my parish. He taught me everything he knew about Joomla! and we began to work together to design and manage websites. This is when we began designing websites for the Diocese of Erie and other locations in the area.
For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to be a priest. When I was a child, I remember telling my associate pastor, Monsignor Joseph Reszkowski, about how I wanted to be a priest. He told me that I would be a priest when he was in heaven. Monsignor Joe was a very important person in my vocation story. I believe he was a role model of priesthood for me, and gave me the confidence to move forward as willingly as I did. My grandmother is a major role in my vocation discernment. She is always someone who I know I could talk to about my calling to the priesthood, and she always gives me the best encouragement! Throughout my time in grade school and high school, I felt a stronger and stronger call to the priesthood. During my time at Cathedral Prep, I began the application process to the seminary for the Diocese of Erie. I was accepted to attend Saint Mark Seminary to strengthen my discernment to the Priesthood.
On the night before I moved into the seminary, my aunt told me a story about my great-grandmother. On the day I was born, my great-grandmother visited my mom and me in the hospital. After her visit, she told my aunt “he is going to be a priest.” I never knew that story before that day. Now I keep that story in the back of my mind and I remind myself often that there was something special that my great-grandmother would have said that. She normally didn’t say things like that, and my aunt never told anyone else that either. I pray that God may direct me so that I can come to a full knowledge of Him in my life and if it be His will, that I may know the next step and follow it.
When I started at Gannon University and St. Mark’s, I was originally a computer science major, but with the work load causing conflicts with the seminary schedule, I switched to a Philosophy major. I still tried to take as many computer classes as time permit during my time at Gannon.
In the Spring of 2014, I completed of my Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy degree from Gannon University. I also recieved my assignment to major seminary on April 25 from my bishop, the Most Reverend Lawrence T. Persico. I began my studies at St. Vincent Seminary in Latrobe, PA in the Fall 2014. Since then, I have been installed as a Lector, Acolyte, and most recently, took Candidacy for Ordination.
This past summer, I was blessed to be assigned to Saints Cosmas & Damian Roman Catholic Parish and School in Punxsutawney, PA. I have had the pleasure to spend my summer and Christmas with the parishoners and students at Ss. Cosmas & Damian. With great thanks to my bishop, I have been reassigned to Punxsutawney for the summer of 2017 as well as the school year of 2017-18 until my anticipated Ordination to the Priesthood for the Diocese of Erie.
God willing, I will be ordained to the Transitional Diaconate on April 22, 2017 at Saint Mark Seminary Chapel in Erie, PA.