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An SPO Farewell: Saying Goodbye to some of our long time SPO Missionaries

Updated: Aug 25, 2020

The missionaries of St Paul's Outreach (SPO) have not only been a gift to college campuses across the nation but also to us here in the People of Hope & Compass.

We are blessed to have so many of them participate in our community life while serving as campus missionaries at Seton Hall University and Rutgers with SPO. Please keep in your prayers two of our long time SPO NJ missionaries as they move forward with the next step of their journey with the Lord.

Monica Butler

Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I was born and raised in beautiful Arizona, the 6th of 8 kids.  I grew up in a covenant community much like the People of Hope. In college I studied Spanish and Italian, but tongues was my first language. I have always had a desire to share the Gospel, and when I encountered SPO, I knew it was something I wanted to commit myself to. I served as a Missionary at Arizona State, Ohio State, and a Chapter Leader at Rutgers these past two years. As for my next step, I am moving to the Twin Cities.

As you leave NJ, what is one thing you learned here that you will take with you in your next step?

If I toast my bagel while no one is looking, it doesn’t make it okay. Integrity matters.

What are you most excited about right now?

I love summer! Seriously, I love it. And I am a godmother for the first time to my nephew Matisse.

How has the People of Hope/Compass played a role in your time in NJ?

I have really enjoyed my small group. It has been a tremendous blessing to share my life with other women who are running the same race as me. Also, I love the intergenerational experience that I get in POH; there is so much wisdom!

What parting words or final message do you have for those you leave behind in NJ?

Thank you for your yeses, both big and small, especially the little daily “yes Lord’s” that no one sees but Christ. Thank you for opening your hearts and homes to me these past two years. Thank you for the witness of your lives!


Annie Michalica

I’m originally from the Chicago suburbs, I went to the University of Dayton, and then I became an SPO Missionary and was sent to the Garden State! I have spent the last five years in New Jersey working for SPO, from serving as a Missionary in the dorms on campus at Seton Hall to serving as the Regional Administrator for the Northeast Region (supporting SHU, RU, and NU in Boston). I will be moving to Columbus, OH, getting involved in the Cornerstone (the Sword of the Spirit community in Columbus) community, and working on a small organic farm, growing vegetables!

One of the biggest prayers on my heart throughout college was that the Lord would give me community and a people to be a part of. The Lord has outdone himself in generosity, for he has given me so many friendships, a rich community life, sisterhood, and a deeper knowledge of what it means to be part of a people through my time as a SPO Missionary and my time in the People of Hope. I am so thankful for the support the People of Hope provided me during my time in New Jersey - the pastoral leaders who’ve walked with me, the women in my share groups, and the families that have welcomed me into their family life.

I’ve loved going to families’ homes for Lord’s Days, laughing and being silly during women’s retreats, going to the Flea market with Norma and Regina, St. Patrick’s Day and Easter celebrations at the Buganskis, learning to make Lord’s Day Bread with Donna, having dinner and playing card games with the Hughes - just to name a few things I’ve been grateful for! You all have made an impact on me and I am grateful for the big and small ways we’ve been able to share life.

One scripture verse that resonates as I reflect on how the Lord has worked in the past five years is 1 Perter 2:9-10: “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were no people but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy but now you have received mercy.” I am grateful for the ways the Lord has worked in my heart, especially through deep relationship and community. I have been blessed to be part of the People of Hope. Please know that you have made an impact on me and the other Missionaries who have spent time in New Jersey and know of my gratitude for you!

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