History of Materchristi.com
Nostalgia Isn’t What It Used To Be.
by Tony Casamento
Not true. The history of this web site proves it.
It actually began at the Class Reunion held in September 1999 at the school formerly known as Mater Christi. Two people from the class of ’69 met for the first time that night. They were two unattached attractive people, one male (Steve Byczek), one female (Marjorie Caruso). By the end of the night they did what came natural – THEY COLLABORATED ON A PLAN TO LINK THE CLASS OF 69 ELECTRONICALLY! Hey, I’m not making this up. They contacted everyone they could by email and an email group was formed. More and more ’69 alumni joined the group. Probably an average of 10-15 emails a day were shared by the group. Jokes, birth announcements, heartache, philosophy, you name it. The group just kept growing. Eventually a chat room was added. In March of 2000, the list grew too large for some email systems to handle so we went to a web-based messaging system.
I decided it would be fun to have a “Class of 69” section on my own personal web site. The other 69ers contributed some photos and commentary and the site was born. Many of the people of this group met for minireunions, lunch, etc. The amazing thing about it is that we are not necessarily people who knew each other well in High School. As a matter of fact, most of us were strangers when this group was formed. We don’t feel like strangers any more.
I decided that this group should have its own web site. And then I figured – why not have a web site for ALL graduates of Mater Christi. So in March of 2000 I registered the name www.materchristi.com and quietly began working on the site. I actually published directly on the web while I was drafting the site. I figured no one would visit since the URL was not known. Then I received an email from Elizabeth Brunning Ohlgart (’65) commenting on the site. She had come across it accidentally and was letting her friends know about it. So ready-for-prime-time or not, the site was launched.
I am very excited about this site. I feel there is a strong bond among the people who are part of the Mater Christi family. I look forward to linking up with the thousands of Mater Christi alumni.
Be advised that this is not a spectator sport. You will be asked to participate. I will expect that if I give you an assignment it will be completed in a timely manner. Neatness counts and your grade will become a part of your “permanent record.”
Bye for now.
The Original Mater Christi Web Guy
And so we begin our second decade . . .
Births, deaths, marriages, political and religious discussions, a few arguments with hugs afterwards, trying to find out whatever happened to so-and-so – all things familial happen here.
Several years ago, when I first found materchristi.com, I felt like I was back at home. MC really was my home away from home back in the 70’s. Sometimes I felt like I never left the building (we can discuss that further in a forum if we have to). I always enjoyed going to school, except when there was a chemistry test. As in life, there were good times and bad, but for me, there was always something great about life at Mater Christi.
When Tony first announced his pending retirement, I was a little surprised, then worried. I have stopped by the message boards almost every day for the last few years, and the sudden loss of this pit-stop on the web wasn’t something that I wanted to experience. So I piped up (if any of you knew me in class, I wasn’t the one who raised my hand) and said I’d help.
So here we are, entering our second decade with something old and something new. I hope that I can live up to your expectations for an alumni website. If you have any questions, comments or complaints – please feel free to send them my way.
The New Mater Christi Web Guy
And now for a 2018 update . . . . . .
As life goes on, we all recognize that things change. We get a little older, our shopping habits change, technology advances more rapidly than we can keep up with and the way we communicate with each other evolves.
As you can see from the number of views and especially by the number of comments that appear in the message board, the visits to our discussion forums continue, but interaction with our existing board is rare today. As we slide into 2018, I would like to announce some changes . . .
Threads in the current discussion board named 2010 will be locked, except for Passings. The older archived boards will also be locked but remain viewable for now and no new discussion topics will be authorized.
The guestbook that we have been using is exceptionally antiquated and doesn’t allow any flexibility in the display or aggregation of data. It’s been frustrating, and will also be replaced early in 2018.
Since Facebook has become the social destination, links to the Mater Christi Facebook groups will be placed on the main page. This will give everyone the opportunity to make contact and interact with friends and classmates. If you’re not a member of Facebook, you will have to register to see the activity in most of the groups and registration is required for participation. As additional MC related groups pop up, they will also be linked on our main page.
I want to assure you that this is not a cost-cutting measure. The forums and guestbook are so inexpensive that they’re practically free, and the only real costs for running this site are for the web registration and hosting which will continue to be covered.
Tony Leto has completed the Brother Norman Project and has been posting photos to Facebook for some time. The way the posts appear and invite comments just can’t be duplicated with our existing message board. Tony and I agree that these changes are for the long-term benefit of the Mater Christi Community, and we hope you’ll agree.
As always, if you have questions or comments about these changes, please feel free to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The New Mater Christi Web Guy