“I am not working for a consulting company,” I muttered as I watched my husband retreat through the door of my home office that evening. It was June 21, 2021, and I was nine days away from no longer having a job.
When I resigned my position of Director of Formation at our local parish the March prior, it was made clear through two years of discernment that God was calling me to something different. The issue was that the “something” had not yet been revealed. While I was really trying to put my trust in God, I was beginning to panic. With twenty years of ministry and two master’s degrees invested in parish work, I felt lost. My prayer was a constant, “What do you want of me, Lord?” but I still had no answer. Do you ever feel like God is calling you to something, but you can’t quite figure out what?
When my husband gingerly slid a printout of a job posting for The Catholic Leadership Institute across my desk that night, I should have been excited, not wary. Two difficult experiences with other Catholic consulting companies during my parish tenure made me cynical about any good being done. He calmly implored, “Please, just look at it.” It’s not hyperbole when I say that his simple request changed my life.
When I give seminars on gifts discernment to parishioners, I talk about looking to work in a place where one’s unique gifts, training, and experience intersect with the needs of the Church and the deepest desires of one’s heart. Catholic Leadership Institute is that place for me.
After two years in my role as Senior Director of Leadership Consultants I can say that this is so much more than a job, it’s a vocation. This incredible organization allows me to bring my “whole self” to work, marrying my experience, education, skills, and passion with my faith to help build up the Church and ultimately help people encounter Christ. Every day I collaborate with fantastically gifted people who, even in their labor, project a spirit of joy and mission that is unmatched in all my years of ministry. I have never worked in a more Christ-centered and mission-driven atmosphere.
“What do you want of me, Lord?” CLI helped me articulate my answer to this question with my role description, which each employee is asked to revisit at the start of every new fiscal year:
My role-related purpose as the Senior Leadership Consultant Director at Catholic Leadership Institute is to utilize my leadership skills, pastoral ministry experience, theological groundedness, and responsiveness to the needs of others to build up the Catholic Church from within to recruit, train, care for, partner with, and empower Leadership Consultants in their mission to provide world-class leadership support, training, and guidance for bishops, priests, and Church leaders, in order to enable dioceses and parishes to shepherd a thriving Church and lead more people to Christ.
As our “Prayer for Leaders” reflects, CLI is where I can share my God-given talents, to do the will of God and to find a place in God’s kingdom where my deepest joys and the world’s deepest hungers meet and cry for my special qualities and abilities. What are your deepest joys? What do you see as the world’s deepest hungers? How is God asking you to meet these needs? In other words: what does the Lord want of you? My prayer for all of us is that we are relentless and bold in seeking the answers.
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