Catholic Courier

Posted: December 20, 2013

Growing on both sides of the lens

Courier photos by Mike Crupi

St. Joseph Church of Penfield parishioner Brandon Sanzo playing St. Juan Diego during Our Lady of Guadalupe Masses in 2009 (left) and 2013.

By Mike Crupi/Photo Editor

I think I’m getting old.

I remember when my parents, both retired teachers, used to talk about teaching the children of former students. They stayed in one place long enough to educate two generations of kids. These stories seemed insane to me as a child. How could anyone be old enough to have such an experience?!

While I’m not quite at the point where I’m spanning generations in my work, I’m finally starting to appreciate those stories, and the idea of time passing a little too quickly.

In November of this year I marked 10 years at the Catholic Courier. And in the past couple years I’ve begun to notice how the children I photograph in the Catholic community are growing up right in front of my lens. From Catholic-school students to liturgical dancers to quintuplets in Brockport, I am documenting babies as they become kids, kids as they become teenagers and teenagers as they become young adults.

Many times I’m too busy trying to make a good picture to appreciate the unique view I have into their lives. But lately I’m stopping to think about how lucky I am to be a witness to so many formative events and experiences. Must be getting soft in my old age.

Jomar Barreiro, one of the Brockport quintuplets, at Golisano Children's Hospital's neonatal ICU in 2005 and heading to kindergarten (bottom left) in 2011.

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