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Meet Melissa as a Catholic Speaker & Retreat Leader

Welcome to the new and improved Present Catholic website! In this space I’m reintroducing myself not only as a blogger/writer but as a Catholic speaker and retreat leader. For over 10 years now I have been involved in ministry in some sort of professional and volunteer manner. From running retreats, to leading youth and young adult ministries, to sharing stories through media, to working in college campus ministry- it’s been a wild adventure filled with amazing opportunities. That being said, 10 years ago I neverrr would have imagined I’d be launching a professional speaking career…

I can still picture the moment this life was prophesized over me. It was during college, I was home and standing in my living room, next to our couch, when my mom said, “I could see you speaking like Danielle one day.” Danielle was a well-known Catholic speaker in our diocese. I literally looked at my mom, rolled my eyes, and baulked at the idea. Me? The girl who would get up for a college presentation in front of maybeee 20 students and pretty much black out? The girl who was afraid to raise her hand because what if she said the wrong thing and people laughed at her or thought she was stupid? The girl who used to cry while writing papers because of how torturous it was to get her thoughts out effectively? She thought that girl was going to be a speaker, on stage, in front of hundreds, talking about FAITH?! Ya, OK.

And yet. That moment stuck with me. I honestly had no idea why because it truly seemed so preposterous to me. But there it was, in the back of my mind for years.

Once I graduated college it seemed the opportunities for me to grow in my speaking skills kept coming. And while it was a steep learning curve at first to get over many of my fears (thank you Jesus for the supportive environment and people within SPIRITUS who patiently worked with me), I found that perhaps I could do this. Perhaps what had been holding me back all these years wasn’t just my introverted nature but that I hadn’t found the thing I was most passionate about and thus found worth actually speaking and writing about!

Then in stepped the Holy Spirit. He took the crack I’d opened my heart to this and began pouringgg Himself into me and neither of us have looked back since.

So now 10+ years after my mom had prophesized this life over me, I’m launching this new version of Present Catholic to promote just that- an opportunity for others to encounter the presence of God through Spirit-filled talks and retreats that I’m so excited to offer! I can’t promise you that I will be perfect, as we always have skills to grow in and virtues to perfect, but I can promise that I will be passion-filled and ready to meet everyone I speak to right where they’re at.

Some of the topics I’ve previously spoken on include being bold with the Holy Spirit, deepening your relationship with God the Father, leaning into trust and surrender, and taking leaps of faith. I’ve also developed two Confirmation retreats and a signature Present Catholic retreat. However, these are by no means the limit to what I can offer. I enjoy diving into new topics and speaking to wide breadths of audiences. From elementary school students to elderly nuns, I’ve done it all and look forward to whomever the Lord leads me to next!

If you’re interested in learning more or booking me for your parish, group, or event please click here to fill out my inquiry form.

I truly hope you’ll come along for the wild goose chase the Holy Spirit is taking me on- it’s sure to be filled with lots of exciting and winding adventures that I look forward to sharing with you!

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