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Dr. Chris Stravitsch is Co-founder of the St. John Paul II Foundation and Chairman of the Board. He has a passion for creating new ministries that meet today's most pressing needs, especially the pastoral needs of couples and families. Dr. Stravitsch earned a Doctor of Ministry from The Catholic University of America, Washington DC, where he focused his research on the spiritual formation of spouses and families. He earned a dual degree in Pastoral Counseling from St. Mary’s University, San Antonio, Texas, which consisted of an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy and M.A. in Pastoral Ministry, and he earned a B.A. in Psychology from Texas A&M University. Dr. Stravitsch is the President and Founder of Rejoice Counseling Apostolate, an apostolate which serves parishes by providing onsite Catholic counseling services. He is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Dr. Stravitsch and his wife, Sarah, reside in Katy, Texas, with their five children.
Married 27 years, Damon and Melanie Owens are founders of Joyful Ever After and hosts of The Catholic Marriage Summit 2020. Since 1993, Melanie, full-time homeschooling mother of eight, and Damon, first executive director of the Theology of the Body Institute, have trained over 20,000 couples in marriage, NFP, and Theology of the Body. Melanie earned her BA in Sociology at the University of California at Santa Barbara, and her MSW at the University of California at Berkeley. Presenters at the 2015 World Meeting of Families and the 2017 USCCB Convocation of Catholic Leaders, Damon and Melanie keep a full international speaking schedule at conferences, seminars, universities, high schools, seminaries, and parishes on the good news of marriage, sexuality, Theology of the Body, Theology of the Family, adoption, and NFP. Damon has published numerous articles, appears regularly on many radio and television programs (EWTN, Catholic Answers, Ave Maria, Relevant Radio, Immaculate Heart Radio, ABC World News Tonight, CBS News, NPR), and has hosted and produced three 13-part television series for EWTN. He is also an accomplished gospel singer honored with a solo during the 1995 NJ Papal Mass at Giants Stadium presided by Pope St. John Paul II. In 2018, Pope Francis honored Damon with the papal Benemerenti Medal in recognition for his service to the Church in support of marriage and family. Damon and Melanie are the parents of eight and live outside of Philadelphia.
Most Reverend Bishop Frank J. Dewane serves as the spiritual leader of more than 227,000 Catholics in the Diocese of Venice in Florida. Bishop Dewane was named Coadjutor Bishop of the Diocese of Venice by Pope Benedict XVI on April 25, 2006, and on January 19, 2007, he was installed in his current role as Bishop of the Diocese. In addition to holding a degree from the University of Wisconsin, Bishop Dewane also completed studies at The American University in Washington DC, as well as from Pontifical Gregorian University and Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas, both in Rome. Bishop Dewane currently serves on several committees at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops including the Committee for Domestic Justice and Integral Human Development (past Chair), Committee for International Justice and Peace, Ad Hoc Committee against Racism, Subcommittee for the Pastoral Care of Migrants, Refugees and Travelers. Further, Bishop Dewane is a member of the Board of Directors of the Franciscan Foundation for the Holy Land.
Charlotte Sacco is a wife to Jason for 25 years, mother of three girls and grandmother of five. She serves as a Spiritual Director in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston and has a heart on fire for bringing people and families to a deeper understanding of their mission and purpose in Christ. Charlotte supports the St. John Paul II Foundation as a speaker and emcee for the Together in Holiness initiative. Knowing well the challenges and beauty of marriage and raising children - along with the importance of prayer, the Sacraments and counting on God‘s grace - she strives to help married couples not just survive, but thrive in their marriage!
Fr. Shawn Monahan, OMV is a native of Boston MA, he graduated from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 1995 and was ordained a priest for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary in 2002. Since then he has enjoyed a variety of apostolic ministries including parish life, giving parish missions, retreat ministry and in seminary formation as Novice Master. He also serves on the board for Support After Abortion, which seeks to end the demand for abortion by healing those impacted by abortion. Working both in seminary formation and retreat ministry Fr. Shawn has developed a deeper understanding of the dynamics of growth and maturity in the Christian life and how to overcome and heal the wounds that hold us back from experiencing Jesus’ deepest desire for each of us: “I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.” His podcast, “Homilies to Heal the Heart and Soul” are accessible on a variety of platforms, including Spotify and iTunes.
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