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Justin Fatica and 42 Hard as Nails Inc. missionaries have traveled the globe since 2002 bringing the Gospel of Jesus Christ to others.

Now Fatica will bring his passion and message of faith, hope and love to youth and families in Pleasant Prairie on Oct. 1-2 as a guest of St. Anne Catholic Church.

Accompanying Fatica will be the Rev. Peter John Cameron, director of formation of Hard as Nails Ministries.

They will be featured during a two-day local “You’re Amazing” Family Parish Mission. It is designed to provide a special encounter with Jesus Christ, reaching every segment of the parish community, from grammar school children through high school, college, parents and the senior community.

The theme of the mission is “Living Passion/Passion Living.”

Hard as Nails Ministries is a national Catholic evangelization apostolate with a special outreach to youth.

Fatica, its executive director, was the star of the HBO documentary “Hard as Nails” and is the author of two best-selling books. He and a team of 18-25- year-old, volunteer missionaries utilize different types of “Hard as Nails” events, all in the promotion of its mission: “To awaken the world to the power of God’s love.”

Special programs

According to Richard Sosa, director of music and youth ministry at St. Anne’s, the mission will include presentations on Oct. 1 for adults.

Fatica and two missionaries will lead high school students with talks on living the baptismal call, being a witness and more.

“These students will face their challenges, encourage one another and learn the meaning of suffering and the importance of a relationship with Christ and the community,” Sosa explained. “Two missionaries will lead middle school students in a similar way, but the material is lessened in intensity and depth, as well as the way they interact with students.

“This presentation allows for students to be reached at a young age to provide a base of faith, hope and love that guide them to a more secure future,” he said.

Missionaries will lead children from kindergarten through grade 5 in learning worship songs, Bible reflections and other activities. Fatica will also read his children’s book, “You’re Amazing,” to the children.

On Oct. 2, the event will feature a program for the entire family, encouraging parental leadership, forgiveness, love and family unity.

“Families and communities unite with each other with Christ as the focus in a new, vital and impactful way,” said Sosa. “Father Peter John Cameron will join the mission and speak, as well as Justin.”

A fortunate meeting

Ordained in 1986, Cameron is a Dominican priest who served as the chairman of the Department of Homiletics at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie, N.Y. He is an author and the founding editor-in-chief of Magnificat, where he worked from 1998-2018. Cameron assists Fatica in his spiritual decisions as well as the “You’re Amazing” missions.

“Getting Justin Fatica and the ‘Hard as Nails’ missionaries to come to our church and our area, I believe, was Divine Providence. We had hosted Justin several years ago for dinner at our parish. He was in the area to speak at Holy Hill at a youth conference and we reached out to their team to see if they would want to stop for dinner. It was a beautiful night of fellowship, prayer, food and friendship,” explained Sosa. “I believe it was that initial meeting that planted the seed to bring Justin and his team back for a full parish mission.”

St. Anne parishioners volunteered to bring food for evening meals and offered to host missionaries in their homes.

Spread to area parishes

Sosa spread the word among all the parishes in Kenosha and many are planning to come to the St. Anne Mission. Additionally, Fatica will be coming to St. Lucy Catholic Church and St. Catherine High School in Racine on Sept. 30.

“It really is an area-wide mission that can have far-reaching impact on the entire communities of Racine and Kenosha,” explained Sosa. “The ‘You’re Amazing’ Family Parish Mission has a very important purpose for individuals and families, for this parish and any parish, for that matter. Its simple purpose is to transform lives, families and parishes. The purpose of this mission is simple: to awaken us and to awaken families to the power of God’s love.”

A spark to family life

Mary Mowry, director of religious education, faith formation and sacramental preparation at St. Anne Catholic Church, hopes the Holy Spirit ignites the parents within the parish community.

“I want them to joyfully, steadfastly teach their children to live in the truths of our faith, and that they come to understand how freeing such a life can truly be,” she said. “I pray our families are inspired to develop a life of prayer and service within their homes and that all who attend this mission be filled with a profound sense of who they are and whose they are, beloved children of the Father and his disciples.”

Thanks to a local Catholic donor, the event is free and open to the public.

“Hard as Nails” focuses on caring for all people by accompanying them in their suffering. Sosa said he prays that many will take time to attend the mission.

“I can promise, you will not regret it,” he said. “Imagine, if everyone we knew, including ourselves, was living an authentic life in Christ. Imagine what that would look like. Imagine what parishes would look like. Imagine what the Catholic Church would look like.”If you go

What: “You’re Amazing” Family Parish Mission

Where: St. Anne Catholic Church, 9091 Prairie Ridge Blvd., Pleasant Prairie

When: 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, Oct. 1-2

Cost: Free and open to the public

All ages welcome. A free community meal will be served at 6 p.m. both evenings.

In addition:

Sunday, Sept. 29: The team will speak at the 9:15 and 11:30 a.m. Sunday Masses. Justin Fatica, the Rev. Peter John Cameron and missionaries will split up among the different Mass locations.

Monday, Sept. 30: At St. Lucy Catholic Church, 3101 Drexel Ave., Racine, from 6 to 8 p.m. Justin Fatica will give a free presentation that is open to the public.

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