Speakers named for Faith-Based Leadership Seminar on March 28

Photo Caption: In addition to presentations by Andy Meister and Becky Shimp, the morning seminar will include a Mass celebrated by Bishop Jenky.

While all could benefit from the Mass with Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, and a morning discussing how to better integrate their faith and work life, there are two groups that Jeannine McAllister especially hopes to see well represented at the Diocese of Peoria’s 2015 Faith-Based Leadership Seminar on March 28.

One group is younger professionals just starting or planning their careers. To that end, event planners such as McAllister point out that one of two featured speakers at the Spalding Pastoral Center in Peoria will be Andy Meister, 26, an engineer with Caterpillar who is also the CEO and co-founder of a residential home cleaning and maid service. He was raised in St. Edward Parish, Chillicothe.

Now realize that the other featured speaker — Becky Shimp, the Diocese of Peoria’s 2014 Distinguished Teacher of the Year — has taught for 25 years at St. Edward School in Chillicothe, and you might guess the second group
McAllister, also a St. Edward parishioner, hopes has a significant presence at this year’s seminar.

“How awesome for our little town of Chillicothe to have our diocesan teacher of the year, who is just a wonderful person, and to have a young professional from a wonderful family who are both going to have such inspiring stories to tell about their faith,” said McAllister. “I’m hoping the school and parish is out to show them how proud they are of what they’ve done.”

This is the sixth annual seminar discussing what it means to be a Catholic in the workplace. The 2015 Faith-Based Leadership Seminar opens with registration at 8 a.m. Bishop Jenky will celebrate Mass with the group at 8:30, followed by a catered breakfast.

In addition to the presentations by Meister and Shimp, the morning program will include table discussion and a rosary led by Deacon Greg Serangeli.
McAllister, executive director of Advocates for Access, was among the presenters at last year’s seminar and described it as “a very moving morning.”

Planning the talk led to “soul-searching” about how she uses and shows her faith throughout the day.

“Our whole table said, “We’re coming back next year,” she recalled. Later, moderator Jack Desatnick asked her to be part of the planning committee.

This year’s speakers will draw from rich faith, family and career backgrounds. Meister has eight years of experience in the U.S. Army and currently serves as the executive officer for a company in the Illinois National Guard Infantry. He spent two years as a full-time missionary with the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. He and his wife Tricia have a daughter, Maria.

Shimp resides in rural Sparland with her husband Ted on a grain and livestock farm. They have two sons, Robert and Thomas. She currently teaches math and science to junior high students at St. Edward School. She has also taught at school districts in Dunlap and Keokuk, Iowa.

Registration and further information is available online at faithbasedleadership.org. Cost to attend is $20 for registrations before March 23, or $25 after that date until the deadline of March 25. The student rate is $10, while clergy and religious are admitted free.

SPALDING PASTORAL CENTER | 419 NE MADISON AVENUE | PEORIA, IL 61603 | PHONE (309) 671-1550 | FAX (309) 671-1595
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