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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

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. Elizabeth Seton Parish Social Hall
10655 Haverstick Rd.
Carmel, IN 46033

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The Indianapolis 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.

 

2021-22 Class Schedule

All September classes are free & open to those discerning applying to the school.

General Info
Application Deadline: Oct. 10, 2022
All Classes Start: Sept. 12
All Classes Date/Time: MONDAYS from 6-9PM

Typical Class Night Schedule:
6:00   Praise & Worship, Testimonies
6:45   Session 1
7:45   Break
8:00   Session 2
9:00   Dismissal

The single most dramatic area of growth I have experienced has been in hearing God. The instruction on the voice of God…opened me to receive in a way that I have not experienced before. God is present and wants to speak not just through me but to me.

– ESM Indianapolis Student

What students are saying about the Encounter School of Ministry – Indianapolis Campus

Encounter has reawakened my spiritual ears and eyes, and ignited my fire once again to stand on the Promises of His Word! Jesus had come to establish His Kingdom here on earth and His Power is here with us!!

– ESM Indianapolis Student

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.

TOM PONCHAK

Campus Director
Bio

Tom Ponchak is a passionate disciple of Jesus. He studied theology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Asbury Theological Seminary. After several years in Catholic ministry, Tom and his wife, Lisa, left the Catholic Church and joined the Association of Vineyard Churches, a non-denominational, evangelical faith community. He was the founding pastor of Matthew’s House Vineyard Church in central Florida. Longing for the Eucharist and sacraments led them back into full communion with the Catholic Church.  

LISA PONCHAK

Co-Director
Bio

Lisa has been deeply captivated by God’s love and his desire to make himself known to us in a deeply personal way. She lives to hear God speak and it has become her passion to help others hear and discern his voice. She is a graduate of Franciscan University and has been involved in ministry for over 20 years. Lisa and Tom have been married for 28 years and have six children.

CRAIG NOVAK

Worship Leader
Bio

Craig is a spirit-filled disciple who has a heart for leading others to encounter the Holy Spirit through praise and worship. He spent four years as a full-time campus missionary with The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS), and an additional three years as a Director of Philanthropy with FOCUS. He has been married to his wife Maria for 10 years, and is blessed with three children.

FR. SEAN DANDA

Instructor
Bio

Father Danda is a priest of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis who desires to help people experience the love of the heart of the Father.  He was formed for the priesthood at St. John Vianney College Seminary in St. Paul, MN, and the North American College in Rome, Italy.  Ordained in 2009, he has served in various roles throughout the Archdiocese and is currently pastor of St. Malachy in Brownsburg.

NATHANAEL REA

Instructor
Bio

Nathanael Rea is the Director of Evangelization and Adult Faith Formation at St. Malachy Catholic Church in Brownsburg. He is passionate about helping people return to fullness of life through the power of the Holy Spirit. He is a graduate of Hillsdale College, BA, and the University of Dallas, ME. He and his wife, Geralyn, have been married eleven years and are blessed with three children.

TOM PONCAK

Director
Bio

Tom Ponchak is a passionate disciple of Jesus. He studied theology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville and Asbury Theological Seminary. After several years in Catholic ministry, Tom and his wife, Lisa, left the Catholic Church and joined the Association of Vineyard Churches, a non-denominational, evangelical faith community. He was the founding pastor of Matthew’s House Vineyard Church in central Florida. Longing for the Eucharist and sacraments led them back into full communion with the Catholic Church.  

LISA PONCAK

Co-Director
Bio

Lisa has been deeply captivated by God’s love and his desire to make himself known to us in a deeply personal way. She lives to hear God speak and it has become her passion to help others hear and discern his voice. She is a graduate of Franciscan University and has been involved in ministry for over 20 years. Lisa and Tom have been married for 28 years and have six children.

CRAIG NOVAK

Worship Leader
Bio

Craig is a spirit-filled disciple who has a heart for leading others to encounter the Holy Spirit through praise and worship. He spent four years as a full-time campus missionary with The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS), and an additional three years as a Director of Philanthropy with FOCUS. He has been married to his wife Maria for 10 years, and is blessed with three children.

Fr. Sean Danda

Instructor
Bio

Father Danda is a priest of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis who desires to help people experience the love of the heart of the Father.  He was formed for the priesthood at St. John Vianney College Seminary in St. Paul, MN, and the North American College in Rome, Italy.  Ordained in 2009, he has served in various roles throughout the Archdiocese and is currently pastor of St. Malachy in Brownsburg.

NATHANAEL REA

Instructor
Bio

Craig is a spirit-filled disciple who has a heart for leading others to encounter the Holy Spirit through praise and worship. He spent four years as a full-time campus missionary with The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS), and an additional three years as a Director of Philanthropy with FOCUS. He has been married to his wife Maria for 10 years, and is blessed with three children.

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 Free 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: 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 2: Lord, Renew Your Wonders by Damian Stayne  |  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

Thank You to
Our Archbishop

Read Bishop Doherty’s
Letter of Welcome

Letter of Welcome >

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 >

 

Classes Free & Open
September Only

Encounter Conference
Registration Open

Transformation 
Night

Healing
Service

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?