Hello! Nik, Alex and Siena here. We are thrilled to begin our adventure as FOCUS missionaries and answer the call from Christ and the Church to “make disciples of all nations.” We would love for you to join us on this mission!
God has called us to the specific mission of serving college students at the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL. Nik just finished serving his first semester as a missionary at Murray State University (MSU) this past Spring 2023. Alex just finished her third year of serving as the Director of Catholic Campus Ministry at the MSU Newman House. This Fall we have been sent to Gainesville to serve as FOCUS missionaries at UF. Our typical week on mission is filled with incarnational evangelization on campus, at coffee shops, at the rec center, or in our living room. We invest intentionally in the students at Florida through discipleship groups, Bible studies, formation nights, retreats etc. With our first child Siena being born August 23, 2023, it is a great gift to be able to start our family as a “missionary family.” Please pray for our family and mission!
God transformed our lives individually while we were in high school. Both of us felt the transforming love of Christ, and wanted to live our entire lives for Him.
“I have come to consider everything as a loss, because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” Philippians 3:8
I grew up Catholic, but never thought too much about it until high school when I began to question and stray. After dipping my toes in what the world could offer in high school, I was left unsatisfied and enslaved. By the grace of God I was determined to pursue the only thing I knew could perfectly satisfy all the desires of my heart, the love of Christ.
Beginning college, I knew what I had my eyes set on. I refused to be sucked even deeper into the misery of a life without Christ. This pursuit of Christ blossomed into a profound love and desire to give my life entirely to my Lord and my God. For a while I seriously discerned a vocation to the priesthood before being called to marry my incredible wife Alex. After I graduated with my Engineering Physics degree and got married, I began to pursue engineering jobs as it now seemed impractical and irresponsible to pursue anything less “secure” for our marriage and future family. Over the course of the fall of 2022, I had profound difficulty in acquiring an engineering job. And throughout the course of applying and interviewing, I always had a nagging feeling that God was calling Alex and me on a different path, which I ignored and pushed deep down out of fear.
Over the course of my job search, I was living the life of a man on mission. I was praying a holy hour in front of the blessed sacrament every day, and going to daily mass. I was leading a bible study, discipling five different men, and I was going out on campus with the FOCUS team at Murray State to encounter students and invite them into the community. I had never been happier in my life. Through it all, I had the words of Saint Paul in Philippians 3:8 on repeat in my head: “I have come to consider everything as a loss, because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” I declined an engineering job and finally set free the desire of my heart that I had pushed down; to devote my life to knowing Christ Jesus and fulfilling His great commission. What better organization to work with than FOCUS, whose mission statement is exactly that.
Raised in a typical midwestern Catholic home, practicing the Catholic faith was as simple to me as was brushing my teeth: something I didn’t totally love, but something I had to do because it was good for me. However, my perspective completely changed at the age of fourteen when I attended a summer Catholic youth conference. Over the course of the weekend, Jesus slowly began to open my eyes to the power and wonder of living a life devoted to Him. During the Saturday night Eucharistic adoration, I was overwhelmed by God’s love, and I was forever changed.
Since that transformative weekend, my life’s purpose has been to love and serve the Lord. I went through high school and college with this as the Truth that I could always stand on. I am so grateful to have encountered God at a younger age because high school and college were filled with struggles of anxiety and depression, especially while playing Division I volleyball in college. Jesus was my rock through it all, and it was through my sufferings that I was able to become more intimate with Him.
After graduating college, I began working as the Director of Catholic Campus Ministry for Murray State University, pursuing this mission of serving Christ and His Church. During this time, Nik and I dated, were engaged, and married! I am so pumped to now get to live this mission side by side my husband. It is very easy to say that the past three years the Lord has reminded me of how incredibly faithful He is as a good and loving Father.
By answering the call to serve with FOCUS, we entrust our mission to God’s providence through the financial and spiritual generosity of mission partners. We are humbled by the opportunity to invite you to be on mission with us, as we cannot do this without your support! If you are interested in partnering with us, we would love to chat more. Please email Nik at [email protected] so we can set up an appointment. It would be a great gift to share this journey with you!
“The world offers you comfort. But you were not made for comfort, you were made for greatness.” – Pope Benedict XVI