The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS) is “a campus outreach that pursues college students with intentionality and love. We invite them into a growing relationship with Jesus and the Catholic faith, inspiring and equipping them for a lifetime of Christ-centered evangelization, discipleship and friendships in which they lead others to do the same.”
This year the Didde Center has a new FOCUS team. The missionaries are leading bible studies and are available to meet with students one on one. Each year students can also attend a national conference and this year the students will be attending the SEEK conference in San Antonio, Texas. For more information about FOCUS visit their website. To get involved with FOCUS at the Didde Center contact us
Monica Schulz is our team director. Her story: I experienced a powerful conversion to Jesus Christ and His Catholic Church the summer before my junior year of high school, and that encounter with Jesus has been the major turning point in my life. However, as I began college at Texas A&M University, I set my energies on pursuing my career goals of equine veterinary medicine, and those blinders I put on myself effectively blocked out God’s will from my mind and heart. I was not living a heroically Christian life. Then spring break 2013, I went to Honduras for a mission trip and I met people with authentic joy, love, and generosity, yet they had none of the stuff I take for granted in the United States. I was convicted by how these Hondurans lives were totally dictated by their Catholic faith, and Jesus Christ, and I wanted that. I came home asking myself, “What am I doing with my life?” Doing full-time mission work after college had always been on my heart, but I never considered it because it would interfere with my plans. Nonetheless, once I allowed The Lord to touch that missionary desire and bring it to fruition, I now couldn’t imagine doing anything else with my life!
His story: I grew up a good little boy. I was always first to raise my hand in Sunday school and in youth group. I thought I was always way farther ahead of my peers in my relationship with God. My problem was that I was not developing a personal relationship with him. My prayer life was dull at best. I allowed my pride to convince me that I knew everything I needed to for my salvation. Then my world was turned upside down when I began to research Jesus and his early Church. Seeing how fulfilled they were in receiving the body and blood of Christ brought me into a deeper personal relationship I didn’t believe was possible.
Her story: As I began college, my faith life consisted of knowing a lot about Christ and His Church, but distancing myself from knowing Him. It all began to change after an invitation – an invitation from a friend to join her in praying the Psalms in the Liturgy of the Hours. After encountering something different and beautiful in this prayer of the Church, I wondered what all had I been missing. This led me to start asking the hard questions and finding reasons behind all that I had been taught to believe, to test out my faith for myself. As amazing friendships with the students and missionaries I was praying with formed, I found the truth that I had been searching for as they totally lived out their faith with joy. Engaging in the activities at our Catholic student center, I came to deeply know Jesus and His life-changing love for me and I fell in love with Him! Amidst all the voices of this world, I encountered the love I was made for and that brought so much joy, peace, and freedom. I want to be that for others, one more voice to make an invitation to know Christ, so that women know love that transforms everything!
His story: When I was ten, I wanted to be an astronaut president. Today my dreams are much bigger–I want to spread the gospel of God! But I’m getting ahead of myself. After the astronaut thing didn’t pan out, I went from being a cradle Catholic to a distracted and disillusioned college student. In the summer of 2013, I was a missionary at a summer camp called Covecrest, but those missionary seeds were quickly choked out by the anxieties and selfishness of the modern world. I knew that Jesus was real, but I was torn between His call to greatness and the daily grip of mediocrity and pride. In the fall of my senior year, I met a team of FOCUS missionaries. Their personal virtue, zeal for the Gospel, and selfless love touched my heart in a radical way, and I remembered what it felt like when I’d first fallen in love with Jesus. God had built me a car and filled it up with fuel, but I’d been sitting in the parking lot–the missionaries finally turned the key. The missionary zeal planted in my heart by Christ finally moved from emotion to action. Now I want nothing more than to set fire to young people’s hearts in the same way.