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Staff Report – Florida Catholic


How can you follow Jesus’ plan for your life this year? The Called and Gifted Workshop can help you answer this question.

The workshop occurs over a two-day span at St. Agnes Parish, 7775 Vanderbilt Beach Rd., in Naples, on 7-9 p.m. Sept. 15, and, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sept. 16. The cost of the workshop is $25. Some workshop materials are in Spanish as well.

The workshop is a “gifts discernment” process developed by Sherry Waddell and Father Michael Sweeny, O.P., in partnership with the Catherine of Siena Institute located in Colorado Springs, Colo. Gifts discernment simply means that God has given each one of us special abilities which are to be used for the benefit of others. The participants will gain a solid understanding of their unique giftedness and how to take the next steps toward more purposeful Christian living.

St. Agnes Parish Director of Religious Education Ivy O’Malley had Sherry Waddell’s book, “Intentional Disciples,” on her shelf for many years with good intentions of reading and incorporating at the parish. Last year, O’Malley was able to attend this workshop at a parish in Fort Myers. Since attending the Called and Gifted Workshop, she explained that she was more inspired in her administrative role in the parish and her evangelism activities in the community. “I am hopeful about the ripple effect from the lives of those who come to this year’s workshop,” O’Malley noted.

Amanda Paez attended the Fort Myers workshop too, “I knew that I liked to help people. I knew I liked to write. I knew that people often asked me to pray for them. What I didn’t know was that these things I took for granted for years would shed light on God’s call in my life.”

Through a series of talks, inventories, and self-reflection, Paez realized that these are her gifts. As a result, she embraces the Lord’s call to intercede by asking others how she can pray for them.”

The ability to understand one’s gifts makes life more meaningful, changes the society in which we all live in and enables one to live the call God placed within in each of us. Because there will be a day in which each of us will stand in front of God and be asked to give an account of our discipleship, the Called and Gifted workshop is one practical way of evaluating, while on earth, how well we are answering the call that God places within our hearts.

To register, go to For more information please contact Ivy O’Malley 239-592-1949 or

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