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Our team

Fr. Nilson Leal de sa

Hello, I am Fr. Nilson! After 21 years in France, 4 in Italy, 2 in Africa, and a few months in Vietnam I am now in Denver, CO discovering the beauty of America! I never thought I would be so involved in this mission, but It is wonderful to see that Christ unites us despite our differences. Finally, the Community of the Beatitudes in the Church is like a family, where I feel at home everywhere. Beatitudes Missions offers the possibility to “taste” the universality of our Faith. In times past when I have left for a new country with fears and my limits, the Lord has always sustained me with his grace and given me his peace. So, I continually surrender myself to Him.

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Sr. Helene Bodman

Assistant Director

I am a French member of the Community of the Beatitudes and have lived in Denver for 5 years. Before Denver, I had a rich missionary experience in various countries, and I'm eager to share my faith with as many people as I can. I feel in many people a great thirst for God that they try to fill with the wrong things, and I want to help people drink from the living water Jesus offers us. I'm happy to be part of the Beatitudes Mission team, bearing fruit together through this ministry. I pray that the Holy Spirit opens doors for people who need to encounter the joy of Jesus.

Sr. sarah Mercier

Intern Coordinator

Hi! My name is Sister Sarah of the Annunciation. I am from France and have been in the community of the Beatitudes since 2008!  I moved to the Denver, CO house at the end of November 2021 and I am happy to serve and follow Jesus here in America! My task in Beatitudes Missions is to help form the daily life of the interns. My goal is to help them serve Jesus every day with joy, to grow in a spirit of faith, freedom, fraternity, and to serve Christ in their daily life.

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fr. anthony
Executive Director

Born and raised in Colorado, my formation path included the University of Notre Dame, diocesan seminary in Denver,  Jewish Studies in Jerusalem, a Pontifical License in Theological Anthropology at the University of St. Teresa of Avila in Rome, and Byzantine bi-ritual faculties. I helped found the chaplaincy at the Colorado School of Mines as well as Beatitudes Missions. I have guided over 15 student/young pilgrimages to Israel, and 8 to Europe! I have spent the last six years residing in Israel and Lebanon, but for 2022-23, I live at our center for retreat and mission south of Paris, serving on the Community's international team for student and young adult outreach, preparing for World Youth Day in Lisbon. 

mckenna foley

Missionary Intern

Shalom! I am so excited to be serving this year with Beatitudes Missions! Originally from Michigan, I recently graduated from Benedictine College in Kansas. I enjoy reading and writing poetry, having conversations about philosophy, and spending time outdoors.  I will be assisting in planning upcoming pilgrimages to Lebanon and World Youth Day, running Beatitudes Missions' social media, and building community within Beatitudes Missions as a whole. Beatitudes Missions has shown me how to live the Christian life as a great adventure, and has been such a powerful witness of true community to me! I am overjoyed to be a part of the Beatitudes Missions community, and am looking forward to witnessing to the faith through the work we do. 

maria gonzalez di tillio
Missionary Intern

My name is Maria and I am so thankful to be working at Beatitudes Missions as an intern this year. I was born in Venezuela to a loving family of four (mom, dad and sister), lived in NY and OH as a child, and recently graduated from Harvard in 2022. During my time in college, I experienced profound conversion -- Jesus revealed to me that I am the Beloved Daughter of God, that He is the Living Water that "wells up to eternity" (Jn 4), and that He has “prepared a place” for each of us to take us “to Himself” in His Father’s House (Jn 14). I'm so excited to share this through Beatitudes Missions by facilitating pilgrimage/mission, social media and experiences for young adults, as well as receiving and sharing the joy of this beautiful ministry!

jackie minton
Missionary Intern

Hi! My name is Jackie and I am excited to serve with Beatitudes Missions this summer in Israel and France, leading up to World Youth Day in Portugal. I was born and raised in Arlington, Texas, and have bopped around the U.S. over the past decade through school and other mission opportunities. I graduated from Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee in 2020, where I studied songwriting and minored in philosophy.  I love words in any form– writing, reading, or singing! Living in Texas, I teach private music lessons, perform on the weekends, and release original music. In addition to a passion for music, I enjoy drinking tea, swing dancing, and hiking. Since the Lord put France on my heart three years ago, I’ve been studying French with joy. Je parle un peu le français et j’attends avec impatience d’en apprendre davantage!

kathryn pluta
Missionary Intern

Hello! My name is Kathryn and I am a junior at Benedictine College studying Journalism/Mass Communications & International Studies. I call Chicago home and am the oldest of five children. In my free time, I enjoy reading, creative writing, spending time outdoors, and enjoying a cup of coffee over conversation with a friend. I am beyond excited for the opportunity to learn, explore, and grow in friendship with the Lord this summer! 

emmanuel arias
Missionary Intern

Ayee, Christ peace be with all! My name is Emmanuel I am 23 years old from Charlotte, North Carolina. I grew up in Florida near the Tampa area and my Mother and Father are from Venezuela and the Dominican Republic. After graduating I coached highschool football while studying Psychology for two years at Belmont Abbey College, and then took a year off to do missionary work across the US. I'm currently still working towards my bachelors, and discovering my vocation.  Being an intern for this summer in France is a hype I've never had before! I'm excited to be a part of and a witness to how the Lord will work in many lives this summer, including my own. The Lord is my shepherd, his faithfulness endures forever. Shalom, Shalom!

abigail rose
Missionary Intern

Howdy! My name is Abigail Rose. I grew up in Greensboro, North Carolina with my parents and 4 siblings. Currently I attend college at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where I am a junior civil engineering student. I am ecstatic to have the opportunity to serve as a missionary intern in France with Beatitudes Missions for the summer of 2023, and to experience World Youth Day in Lisbon, Portugal! I cannot wait to encounter Our Lord and to surrender to Him as He guides me on my journey with Beatitudes Missions.

ivanna archila 
Missionary Intern

Hi! I am so grateful  for this opportunity to grow and serve with Beatitudes Missions. I grew up in Belize and now live in Magnolia, Texas. I am currently a clinical psychology major at Franciscan University of Steubenville. I find joy in relational ministry, conversations and long walks/hikes, spiritual readings, laughing, food, and quality time with friends. God is truly working in me in this invitation, and I am so excited to respond to it by being open to all the ways He wants to give Himself to me. Totus tuuus Maria! 

deirdre cullen
Missionary Intern

Hi! I grew up in Ann Arbor, MI, and I am currently attending Hillsdale College. Along with studying philosophy and English, I am continuing my training in violin performance. I love Dickens’ novels, Pope Saint John Paul II’s philosophies, the romantic classical period of music, and the Abiding Together podcast. While I grew up in a vibrant Catholic community, it was during college that I more profoundly encountered God as the fulfillment of my desires. I am excited to come into deeper intimacy with Christ as I take the next step in my life with the Beatitudes community!

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sarah beth richthammer
Missionary Intern

Hey y'all! I am so excited to begin this adventure with the Community of the Beatitudes. I was born in West Virginia and grew up in Pittsburgh.  I am the second oldest of eight, and just graduated with my Masters degree in Mental Health Counseling from Franciscan University of Steubenville. I love being outside whether it be hiking, camping, hammocking, canoeing, etc. I also love reading and one of my favorite books is Man's Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl. I have a lot of favorite saints including JPII, St. Therese, St. Elizabeth of Hungary, St. Anthony of Padua, and Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati. (Fun fact about me is that I hope to write a memoir of awkward encounters to bless those who happen to read it.)

christine henjum
Missionary Intern

Sweet Jesus’ invitation to be a missionary with Him in this Beatitudes Community is a continuation of blessings in Abba’s surprising Love! Our Momma Mary’s gracious guidance to living in simple obedience, trust and faithfulness to God’s Holy Will has taught me the power of His Word & Light in my life! She & Jesú have brought me to discern with various religious orders & beautiful families of God to grow in my consecration to be possessed by Sanctus Spiritus! Most recent international adventure of growth was becoming an oblate of the Benedictine Daughters of Divine Will in Italy! Filled with joy, gratitude, hope & peace for what the Most Holy Trinity is inspiring for His beloved children! Fiat!

fernando rivera
Missionary Intern

Hey everyone! I’ve grown up in Kansas most of my life and attended a small community college in Hays Kansas where I first met Fr. Anthony and the Community. I now live in Manhattan Kansas and attend the St. Isidore’s Catholic Student Center where I first learned about the summer internship to France. I can say I have never been more excited to be on fire for my faith and to grow in virtue. I live in a Catholic Fraternity called Chi-Rho at Kansas State University, and I have also started a podcast to talk about the lives of the saints and  the theology of our beautiful Catholic faith.

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