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2-year school

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Learn to Live a Supernatural Lifestyle

2-Year Program: 

Drawing from the richness of our Catholic heritage, we seek to teach, equip and activate disciples to demonstrate the love of God through the power of the Holy Spirit in their sphere of influence.

 

TestimoniesStudent Dashboards

Upcoming Event:
Holy Spirit Night

Join the Encounter School of Ministry Gainesville Campus and St. Patrick’s Church February 2 for Holy Spirit Night: No More Orphans featuring Maria Vadia! She will speak on possessing your inheritance in Christ. We’ll begin with worship at 6:30 p.m. At 7:30 p.m. we will have Teaching and at 8:30 p.m. we’ll move into Prayer Ministry

A Message from our Bishop:
Consider the Encounter School of Ministry

Our bishop shares his excitement and invites the faithful to consider being a part of the Encounter School of Ministry.  You can join the 2-year certificate program or join us for our summer Intensive June 2-3!

Spotlight:
Why a 2-Year Ministry School?

This short video gives an overview of the Encounter School of Ministry (ESM) explained by co-founders, Fr. Mathias Thelen and Patrick Reis, along with members of Encounter Ministries. Our Satellite Campus follows the curriculum, core values and classroom environment explained in this video, but is led by a local team who receive ongoing training and formation from the Encounter Ministries and Encounter School of Ministry leadership team.

 

OUR CAMPUS

Location:

St. Patrick’s Catholic Church
500 NE 16th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32601

 

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The Gainesville Campus is a satellite school of the Encounter School of Ministry (ESM) founded by Fr. Mathias Thelen and Patrick Reis. Our leadership and instructors have been trained and equipped by ESM and receive ongoing formation through Encounter Ministries.

2023-2024 Class Schedule

 

General Info
All Classes Date/Time: WEDNESDAYS from 6:30-9:30PM

Typical Class Night Schedule:
6:30   Praise & Worship, Testimonies
7:15   Session 1
8:15   Break
8:30   Session 2
9:30   Dismissal

COURSES

2-Year Curriculum

Classroom Environment

Each class includes a time of worship, testimony, teaching sessions, activations and small group time.

When do we meet?

Faithful Teaching

Before approval, our curriculum undergoes a rigorous academic curriculum review with a team of respected Catholic theologians, including  Dr. Mary Healy, Dr. Alan Schreck, Dr. Daniel Keating, Rev. Peter F. Ryan, S.J., and Dr. Robert Fastiggi.

Not only did they work to guarantee that the curriculum is free from moral and doctrinal error and rooted deeply in Scripture, official Church teaching and the testimony of the early Church fathers, but they helped to provide greater precision and accuracy in the curriculum to diminish possible confusion and ensure full continuity with Church teaching.

This campus has been reviewed and approved by the bishop of this diocese.

 

TEAM MEMBERS

All satellite campus leaders and instructors are graduates of the Encounter School of Ministry and strive to live out the ESM Core Values.

Gwen Evans

Director

 

Bio
Gwen Evans is the Director of the Gainesville Campus of Encounter School of Ministry. A homeschooling mom turned empty nester, Gwen began praying for God to bring Encounter to Gainesville back in 2017 when she and her family moved to Florida from Virginia. After stepping away from serving in youth ministry in 2020, she began seeking God’s purposes and felt a tug to investigate Encounter’s School of Ministry Program. By the end of her first quarter of study, she discovered that the Mercedarian Sisters at UF and Fr. David Ruchinski were praying and discerning the launching of an Encounter Campus in Gainesville!! The rest, as they say, is history…. She is passionate about Encounter School of Ministry because it equips God’s people to live out their baptismal call to be authentic disciples of Jesus and make Him known. “I am more and more convinced that our inheritance in Christ is much greater than what we typically experience. The single most powerful thing that happens in Encounter is the renewal of the mind to the riches we have in Christ. The saints understood this!! This abundance is for regular people too. God has raised up Encounter School of Ministry to bring His people alive in Him so that they can give convincing evidence that Jesus is Lord because they walk like He walked.”

Fr. David Ruchinski

Bio
Fr. David Ruchinski is the Chaplain for ESM Campus in Gainesville. Fr. David entered the major seminary of the North American College in Rome and was awarded his Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Gregorian University. He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of St. Augustine on 23 June 2007 by Bishop Victor Galeone at the Cathedral Basilica. Since 2011 he has served as Pastor and Director of St. Augustine’s Parish and Catholic Student Center in Gainesville, Florida. His guidance and support have been essential to the establishing of ESM Gainesville Campus. “I’m excited to see the evangelizing power that God wants to release on the campus of the University of Florida and from there to the whole state.” Fun fact: When Fr. David is not nurturing souls, you can probably find him in his garden.

Chris Pampo

Bio
Christ is a homesteader, a scientist, and a mom of three who has a passion for helping others experience the love of God. She is excited about taking back territory for the Kingdom and claiming Gainesville for Christ by teaching, equipping, and activating others in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Fun Fact: Chris raises sheep, so the Good Shepherd parables especially resonate with her!

Jessica Bailes

Bio
Jessica is a fourth-year college student studying Pipe Organ and English at the University of Florida with a passion for Catholic LGBT ministry and campus ministry. She loves how Encounter uses Scripture to reveal the truth of Christ’s power to work miracles through us. Fun fact: Flower crowns are a part of Jessica’s everyday apparel.

Jennifer Hackett

Bio
Jennifer Hackett, Former Youth Director who since experiencing miraculous physical and inner healing has a passion for bringing the love of Christ and His healing touch others. Her dream for ESM Gainesville is be an instrument for the body of Christ to come together as one, share God’s love, and do ALL that HE tells us to do! Fun fact: Known to some as Jennifer Prayer Lady.

Alex Zukoski

Bio
Alex is an actor and a caretaker, doing his best to develop an intimate relationship with the Lord. Alex is passionate about ministry, and influencing people with the truth. His profound personal conversion has led him to reach people for Jesus in the most unlikely situations. He is excited to be part of bringing the power of God to His people and seeing lost sheep come alive in faith. Fun fact: He enjoys fermenting things.

Najwa Liscombe

Bio
Najwa is a happily retired nurse from the University of Florida / Shands conglomerate. With Encounter School of Ministry, she is excited to grow in her discipleship to help lead others to experience the love God has for them, not only in her parish, but throughout Gainesville, Florida and all over the US.. A fun fact about Najwa is that, as a child, she locked herself in the airplane bathroom and could not get out.

Sandy DeTeresa

Bio
Sandy is an adventurer who works in campus ministry, travels the world, loves dogs, and seeks Jesus in all things.
The Lord has drawn here to Encounter and has done so much in it and I’m excited to see how He transforms not only her, but those in Gainesville, through this ministry! Fun fact: She can read and write in 5 languages (2 of them are “dead” languages) and hope to learn at least 3 more!

Mercedarian Sisters

Bio
We are the Mercedarian Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament evangelizing with Mary in the light of the Eucharist desiring to spread the love of the Blessed Sacrament through the education of children and youth.
We love how Encounter wants the true freedom of every person in Jesus Christ walking in the Holy Spirit as sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father.
Fun Fact: We were founded in 1910 in Mexico City by Venerable María del Refugio Aguilar during the Mexican persecution. Viva Jesús Eucarístico! Nuestro Rey Eucarístico!

Gwen Evans

Director
Bio
Gwen Evans is the Director of the Gainesville Campus of Encounter School of Ministry. A homeschooling mom turned empty nester, Gwen began praying for God to bring Encounter to Gainesville back in 2017 when she and her family moved to Florida from Virginia. After stepping away from serving in youth ministry in 2020, she began seeking God’s purposes and felt a tug to investigate Encounter’s School of Ministry Program. By the end of her first quarter of study, she discovered that the Mercedarian Sisters at UF and Fr. David Ruchinski were praying and discerning the launching of an Encounter Campus in Gainesville!! The rest, as they say, is history…. She is passionate about Encounter School of Ministry because it equips God’s people to live out their baptismal call to be authentic disciples of Jesus and make Him known. “I am more and more convinced that our inheritance in Christ is much greater than what we typically experience. The single most powerful thing that happens in Encounter is the renewal of the mind to the riches we have in Christ. The saints understood this!! This abundance is for regular people too. God has raised up Encounter School of Ministry to bring His people alive in Him so that they can give convincing evidence that Jesus is Lord because they walk like He walked.”

Fr. David Ruchinski

Bio

Fr. David Ruchinski is the Chaplain for ESM Campus in Gainesville. Fr. David entered the major seminary of the North American College in Rome and was awarded his Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Gregorian University. He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of St. Augustine on 23 June 2007 by Bishop Victor Galeone at the Cathedral Basilica. Since 2011 he has served as Pastor and Director of St. Augustine’s Parish and Catholic Student Center in Gainesville, Florida. His guidance and support have been essential to the establishing of ESM Gainesville Campus. “I’m excited to see the evangelizing power that God wants to release on the campus of the University of Florida and from there to the whole state.” Fun fact: When Fr. David is not nurturing souls, you can probably find him in his garden.

Chris Pampo

Bio
Christ is a homesteader, a scientist, and a mom of three who has a passion for helping others experience the love of God. She is excited about taking back territory for the Kingdom and claiming Gainesville for Christ by teaching, equipping, and activating others in the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Fun Fact: Chris raises sheep, so the Good Shepherd parables especially resonate with her!

Jessica Bailes

Bio
Jessica is a fourth-year college student studying Pipe Organ and English at the University of Florida with a passion for Catholic LGBT ministry and campus ministry. She loves how Encounter uses Scripture to reveal the truth of Christ’s power to work miracles through us. Fun fact: Flower crowns are a part of Jessica’s everyday apparel.

Jennifer Hackett

Bio
Jennifer Hackett, Former Youth Director who since experiencing miraculous physical and inner healing has a passion for bringing the love of Christ and His healing touch others. Her dream for ESM Gainesville is be an instrument for the body of Christ to come together as one, share God’s love, and do ALL that HE tells us to do! Fun fact: Known to some as Jennifer Prayer Lady.

Sandy DeTeresa

Bio
Sandy is an adventurer who works in campus ministry, travels the world, loves dogs, and seeks Jesus in all things.
The Lord has drawn here to Encounter and has done so much in it and I’m excited to see how He transforms not only her, but those in Gainesville, through this ministry! Fun fact: She can read and write in 5 languages (2 of them are “dead” languages) and hope to learn at least 3 more!

Najwa Liscombe

Bio

Najwa is a happily retired nurse from the University of Florida / Shands conglomerate. With Encounter School of Ministry, she is excited to grow in her discipleship to help lead others to experience the love God has for them, not only in her parish, but throughout Gainesville, Florida and all over the US.. A fun fact about Najwa is that, as a child, she locked herself in the airplane bathroom and could not get out.

Alex Zukoski

Bio
Alex is an actor and a caretaker, doing his best to develop an intimate relationship with the Lord. Alex is passionate about ministry, and influencing people with the truth. His profound personal conversion has led him to reach people for Jesus in the most unlikely situations. He is excited to be part of bringing the power of God to His people and seeing lost sheep come alive in faith. Fun fact: He enjoys fermenting things.

Mercedarian Sisters

Bio
We are the Mercedarian Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament evangelizing with Mary in the light of the Eucharist desiring to spread the love of the Blessed Sacrament through the education of children and youth.
We love how Encounter wants the true freedom of every person in Jesus Christ walking in the Holy Spirit as sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father.
Fun Fact: We were founded in 1910 in Mexico City by Venerable María del Refugio Aguilar during the Mexican persecution. Viva Jesús Eucarístico! Nuestro Rey Eucarístico!

APPLY

Cost of Tuition

Satellite Campus

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 The tuition for the upcoming school year is $250 per quarter (with a discount if you pay by the year). Required books and Mission Trips cost extra.

Enrollment Period
Students enroll and pay tuition for one year at a time. Classes usually start mid-September and run through May. Official dates and class times vary per campus. Upon completion of the 2nd Year School of Ministry, students receive a graduation certificate.

Tuition includes Half Price Admission to the annual Encounter Conference (in-person or online ticket).

Related:

Application Process
Tuition & Financial Aid
Enrollment Requirements
Graduation & Curriculum

Course Materials

 

Additional Reading

In total, textbooks for Year 1 will cost approximately $75 – $100 (not including shipping): Quarter 1: Supernatural Saints by Patrick Reis | Quarter 2: The Spiritual Gifts Handbook by Dr. Mary Healy & Dr. Randy Clark |  Quarter 3: Healing: Bringing the Gift of God’s Mercy to the World by Dr. Mary Healy  |  Quarter 4: Be Healed by Dr. Bob Schuchts |  Deliverance Ministry by the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services Doctrinal Commission, Dr. Mary Healy

Application Process
The application is free. Applications are accepted until halfway through Q1. You will receive submission confirmation as we begin our discernment process. You should be notified within two weeks.

Basic Requirements
– A min. of 18 years of age or High School graduate
– You do not need to be Catholic to apply

EVENTS & NEWS

FULL CALENDAR

Holy Spirit Night

Join the Encounter School of Ministry Gainesville Campus and St. Patrick’s Church February 2 for Holy Spirit Night: No More Orphans featuring Maria Vadia! She will speak on possessing your inheritance in Christ. We’ll begin with worship at 6:30 p.m. At 7:30 p.m. we will have Teaching and at 8:30 p.m. we’ll move into Prayer Ministry.

 

Thank You to
Our Bishop

We are grateful to the bishops who have reviewed the work of Encounter Ministries and the Encounter School of Ministry, welcomed us to their diocese and have offered support and encouragement for this mission.

All Bishop Approvals >

 

Follow us on Social Media

Follow us on social media to stay updated about the Encounter School of Ministry Gainesville Satellite Campus!

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Encounter School
Testimonies

MEDIA

REVIVE | Fremont High School, NE

Encounter School of Ministry students join Patrick Reis and Fr. Walter Nolte at a Nebraska High School.

Encounter Conference | 2022

Flagship Event | We seek to gather leaders of revival in the Church to encounter God’s refreshment, encouragement and impartation of greater anointing for ministry. Tickets >

 

FEARLESS Documentary

Veteran filmmaker Maura Smith takes us on a compelling journey of discovery into the world of supernatural divine power. Following the journey of Encounter Ministries, we see miracles of God through the hands of ordinary people.

Why a 2-Year School of Ministry?

Designed and established from the heart of Encounter Ministries, this school draws from the richness of our Catholic heritage as we seek to teach, equip, and activate disciples to demonstrate the love of God through the power of the Holy Spirit in their spheres of influence.

Theology FAQ

Is it licit for lay people to lay hands on the sick?

What if I "lost" my healing?

Are "charisms" part of an optional spirituality?

Do you need the "gift" of healing or prophecy to minister in these gifts?

Did Jesus really reject signs and wonders?

STUDENT TESTIMONIES

Send A Message

 

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