Suffering That Leads to Hope
“Hope” is not the first word that comes to mind when we hear the word “suffering.” In this dynamic presentation, Judy shares how God led her to unlock the hope hidden in suffering, weaving the Catholic Church’s beautiful theology of suffering into her own story of triumphing in tragedy. Judy’s amazing story will give listeners a shot in the arm of hope, and it will deepen their trust that God can and does work all things together for our good.
Finding the Way When There is No Way
Have you ever stood figuratively before “the Red Sea,” thinking you were completely stuck? Yet God has demonstrated repeatedly that He can and will make a way where there seems to be no way. Come along as Judy takes us through the book of Exodus, examining what God’s chosen people teach us about finding the way during our own desert experiences. This talk contains many stories of God’s miraculous interventions in Judy’s own life, especially when it seemed that death and defeat lurked in every direction she turned.
Listening for God’s Still, Small Voice in the Midst of the Storm
Often, our lives are so filled with noise, chaos and problems that we can’t even think straight, much less hear the voice of God. Yet God promises that His voice will “sound in (our) ears” saying “this is the way, walk in it” (Isaiah 30:21). How many of us experience this type of spiritual direction from God in our lives? In this talk, Judy discusses learning to hear and trust God’s voice, especially in the midst of chaos and confusion.
Climbing Gear: Ascending the Mountain with God
Do we have what it takes to ascend the mountain with God? When life feels like an uphill climb, we must avail ourselves of the “climbing gear” given by God to navigate life’s path, especially when the climb is arduous. In this talk, Judy shares important truths about Christian climbing gear, using engaging and lively stories from her own mountain treks to communicate the timely message that God has provided all we need to triumphantly climb every mountain we face in life.
Fit to Share the Inheritance: Our Personal Transfiguration
In this presentation, Judy unpacks the meaning of Baptism, explaining why our Baptismal vows hold the key to our personal transfiguration. As few of us truly grasp the power contained in this Sacrament of Initiation, Judy believes it is vital that we rediscover the purpose and power inherent in Baptism’s life-giving waters. This presentation dives deep into the meaning of the supernatural gifts imparted to us in Baptism--faith, hope and love--explaining the role these virtues play in preparing us to live a dynamic, power-filled Christian life.
Holy Hope: Is There Any Other Kind?
Hope is so much more than plain old wishful thinking. Hope—Christian hope—prepares us right here and now to live in heaven for eternity. In this talk, Judy compares secular hope with holy hope, learning why cultivating the virtue of hope is crucial to transforming our lives and our world. Judy explains hope in the context of confronting her own struggle to find hope amidst tragedy and suffering, and how the eternal perspective gained through hope changes everything.
Healing During and After Tragedy and Loss
Though we often view our life wounds with sorrow and regret, wishing we could “re-do” the past, our wounds are a door to intimacy with God, and a privileged portal through which grace and glory enter our souls. In this presentation, Judy shares how God’s healing grace entered her heart through the very swords that pierced it, and how God transformed her wounds into a source of strength and hope. Judy explains why turning toward life’s challenges and embracing them with courage changes our struggles from a cause for defeat into a conduit of divine blessing.
Going to Mary, Mother of Hope
Mary, the Mother of Jesus, was the most “blessed” woman who ever lived. But does that mean her life was easy? Being pregnant and unmarried, giving birth in a stable and losing her child for three days was only the beginning of the story—and those are the Joyful Mysteries! Mary is the model and Mother of Hope because she kept her eyes fixed on God, remembering always the “power of the Most High” that had overshadowed her. She teaches us how to live with “open hands,” and why grasping for our will to be done is a recipe for disaster. In this talk, Judy shares how the Blessed Mother helped her open her hands to God’s will, and in doing so, to open her hands to hope.
Creating a Chaos-Free Life
Do you desire a chaos-free life, but can’t seem to find one? Judy’s life was the epitome of chaos, and that was before serious tragedy struck. Judy has learned that though we can’t make life stop happening, we can be intentional about practicing “sobriety from chaos.” This talk is full of practical wisdom about reducing chaos and stress in life, and learning to find the “peace that surpasses all understanding.”
The Eternal Weight of Glory: Judy’s Personal Testimony (Part 1 and Part 2)
From cultural Catholic, to agnostic, to born-again Christian, to Catholic theologian, Judy’s personal testimony covers a gamut of experiences that resonate with the experiences many people in our culture.
In Part One of her story, Judy shares how she found Christ in an evangelical Christian church after losing her faith in God at a Catholic college and becoming a “practical atheist.” God dramatically answered Judy’s desperate prayer to show her if He really existed, sweeping her into the “new evangelization,” and ultimately calling her to become a Catholic theologian and teacher of the faith.
In Part Two, Judy shares how multiple tragedies visited her life, exposing an unspoken lack of trust in God. Paradoxically, after spending 87 days in the ICU with her dying husband, Judy emerged with her faith and trust in God restored, prompting her to write the spiritual memoir, Miracle Man, an Amazon Kindle Bestseller in Catholicism.
In spite of facing multiple calamities in her life, Judy’s amazing faith journey has left her echoing the voice of Jesus and St. John Paul II as she says: “Do not be afraid!” She shares with boldness and honesty about the amazing ways God heard and miraculously answered her pleas for help, hope and wholeness.