96. Make a Mess and Make Excuses: Jacob King, Megan Mastroianni, and Liz Reckart

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In this breakout session from CC Summit 2018, Jacob King, Megan Mastroianni, and Liz Reckart share how they disrupt the status quo and lead revolutions from within their dioceses.

Jacob, the Director of Anthem Philly, and Megan, the Associate Director, draw from their experiences transforming the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s youth and young adults ministry (formerly known as YYAM (like the root vegetable)) into an authentic, dynamic brand that won the Catholic Creatives project of the year award. They discuss the internal revolution that must happen before we set out to transform the world.

Liz Reckart brought her expertise in marketing management for entertainment, technology, and CPGs to the Communications Office at the Archdiocese of LA, where she is the Managing Director of their in-house creative agency. She shares a counterintuitive approach to changing the world by making excuses, an approach that turns competitiveness into compassion and judgment into understanding.

Together, these talks create a practical guide for revolutionary change.

Thank you to all of our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

95. Christian Movies (Usually) Suck: Laina Barakat


Independent film director, writer, and producer Laina Barakat knew from an early age that “Christian movies” just weren’t cutting it. She shares her journey of making films that actually move hearts. Laina tells the story of starting her own production studio, Wayward Ark Productions, as well as her experiences of collaboration while creating her 8beats film. She discusses with Anthony the four hour Russian film that changed her life, the boarding school that somehow didn’t crush her spirit, and her approach to embracing controversial topics while staying grounded in truth.

Thank you to all our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible!

Resources mentioned in this episode: Tribe by Sebastian Junger, Sufjan Stevens, Werckmesiter Harmonies by Béla Tarr

94. My Mangled Tinfoil Grapefruit Heart: Matt Maher

Photo by    Cat Seiwert

Photo by Cat Seiwert

World Youth Day. The Grammys. Every parish retreat you’ve ever attended. Matt Maher’s music has found its way into Catholic and Christian circles — and beyond. On this episode, the singer / songwriter and worship leader discusses his journey with Anthony. He dives especially into the moments that deepened his interior life, including a cheesy retreat skit and the daily devotions that slowly but surely formed his character. Matt offers plenty of life lessons from his time as an unnoticed (and underpaid) parish musician, and he shares how he’s learned to weave truth with transcendence in his music.

Thank you to all our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

Check out what’s happening at the Catholic Creatives New Renaissance Festival!

Resources mentioned in this episode: The Lamb’s Supper by Scott Hahn, Make Your Bed by Admiral William H. McRaven, The Wild Man’s Journey by Richard Rohr

93. Let Your Voice Ring Out: Ike Ndolo

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Singer, songwriter, and worship leader Ike Ndolo released his third album, “Shine,” in 2018. He and Marcellino discuss what makes this album different — both in sound and in story. Ike shares how he’s rewritten his self-image to better reflect God’s view of him, sharing stories of his father’s love and his own recent marriage. He also dives into what it’s like to buck stereotypes, lament injustice in the pursuit of equality, and remain hopeful through it all.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

Check out what’s happening at the Catholic Creatives New Renaissance Festival!

92. JPII Fought Nazis with Theater: Cole Matson

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Cole Matson, PhD, is the programming associate for the Sheen Center in NYC, and serves New York Catholic artists through retreats and community initiatives. He and Marcellino discuss his story: captivated by narratives, Cole pursued theater, but kept finding that his convictions didn’t match the culture of the acting community. Cole shares how his conversion to Catholicism fueled a new outlook on art, and he dives into the potential for vulnerability and communion in theater.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

Resources mentioned in this episode: Bring Him Home, Colm Wilkinson, Les Miserables; The Rhapsodic Theater

91. Resurrection Happens Everywhere: Santonio Hill

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Santonio Hill coordinates urban outreach for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, and on this episode, he shares his big dreams for creating spaces where everyone belongs. Santonio tells Marcellino his wild journey — including the gang fight that shook him from apathy, his stint in seminary (or, in his words, “Catholic rehab”), and the fearlessness he gained as a FOCUS missionary. He also shares his reignited passion for music and rap, and he and Marcellino discuss the opportunities he has to carve a new path to Church unity.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

90. The Purpose of Profit: Chris Pesigan

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Christopher Pesigan didn’t initially consider himself a “creative,” but as the Chief Operating Officer of Player’s Health, a sports risk management platform, he has learned that creative ideas need accounting and operations as much as they need art. He and Anthony explore the paradigm shift that changed Chris’s life — and the friend-turned-CEO who continues to challenge Chris in faith and career. They also discuss trusting God in daily decisions and leading with purpose rather than profit.

As always, thank you to our Patreon sponsors who make the show possible.

Resources mentioned in this episode:
For Goodness’ Sake: Satisfy the Hunger for Meaningful Business

89. A Rebel Heart's Wrecked Plans: Jill Simons

Jill Simons is the founder and creative director of Pink Salt Riot, a Catholic women’s lifestyle brand that definitely wasn’t part of “the plan.” On this episode, she and Marcellino discuss the plans God wrecked to make way for even better gifts, like her life as a wife, mother, and business owner. She tells stories from her days as a theater kid and shares vulnerable, powerful moments of trust as she navigates being a creative and rebel-at-heart.

As always, thanks to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

88. Write the Unspoken: Amanda Vernon and Fr. Matt Fase


Amanda Vernon and Fr. Matt Fase, CSC, co-authored When God Wrecks Your Romance, the unlikely story of two people who fall in love but are (spoiler alert) ultimately called to different vocations. Their conversation with Anthony covers the vulnerable places their writing took them to, and how their work — as a recording artist and a college chaplain, respectively — sheds light on their roles as authors. Amanda and Fr. Matt also share practical wisdom on discernment, not only for vocations, but also for creating art.

Thanks as always to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

87. The Why of Our Lives: Wesley Bancroft


Wesley Bancroft believes that everyone deserves to know what they believe. On a mission to help companies discover their beliefs and operate more authentically, he shares the philosophy behind his work: knowing our “why” halts purposeless action and gives us radical direction. He and Marcellino dive into the experiences that shaped Wesley’s ideas, including his time at a Socratic high school, his conversion to Catholicism, and his work as a designer. He also lays out practical ways for listeners to start finding their central beliefs.

As always, thank you to our Patreon sponsors who made this podcast possible.

86. Lessons from a Megachurch: Jake Brown

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Freelance filmmaker Jake Brown joins Anthony on the podcast to explain how college party marketing and megachurch video production led him to where he is today. As he tells his story, Jake shares the lessons he learned from Protestant churches that use their services to make every second meaningful. He also reflects on the process of deciding to enter RCIA—while still allowing for the room to doubt, change, and keep learning.

As always, thank you to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

85. Love, the Master Communicator: David Calavitta


This week, David Calavitta shares his thoughts on creativity and communication. As Life Teen’s Director of Design and Marketing, he has learned how to take every opportunity to communicate a message and make it extraordinary. David tells the story of his encounter with excellent design that taught him the value of intentionality in messaging. He and Marcellino also discuss what makes parish communication effective, which is the main subject of Life Teen’s upcoming Horizon conference. And, bonus, podcast listeners can get $30 off their registration for Horizon by using the code CCPodcast at checkout!

Thanks as always to our Patreon sponsors who make this podcast possible.

84. Bringing Humanity Back to Marketing: Dave Plisky


This week we chat with Dave Plisky, the Director of Marketing and Digital at DeSales Media Group who thought marketing was kind of bogus back in college. Along with stories of his forays into Quidditch and flute playing, he tells us how a good mentor, authenticity, and a little bit of Seth Godin helped him see how meaningful marketing can be. The same principles that altered his professional life have impacted his faith, too; he shares the way authentic relationships brought him to a deeper relationship with Christ.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

83. A Beautiful Rebellion: Dr. Johannes Hartl

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Dr. Johannes Hartl, founder of the 24/7 prayer house Gebetshaus, breaks all the stereotypes: he grew up as a hippie/punk who admired the Church’s beauty; he’s a Catholic creating prayer experiences in ecumenical spaces; and he makes a German accent sound really nice. In this episode, he tells Marcellino about his first personal experience of God, which forever shaped his approach to religion, trust in providence, and prayer (he’s written two books about it!). He offers powerful insight into the role art plays in drawing people to God, as well as the way Gebetshaus has fostered unity among Christians through beautiful prayer.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

82. Catholic Indiana Jones: Ryan Thomas

Meet the guy who recorded a ten-minute voice memo describing his work for his mom. And, despite his best efforts, she’s still a little confused. Ryan Thomas describes the basketball camp conversion that set him on his life’s course, which included being inspired by St. Ignatius of Loyola to discern religious life and having Archbishop Chaput as his spiritual director (nbd). These experiences created the foundation he works from—mentorship, interiority, and letting his faith permeate his work. Ryan is now working on a Blockchain-based payment and donation system and has a book about Our Lady of Guadalupe in the works.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

81. Living Undivided: Jeff Schiefelbein


Jeff Schiefelbein and Marcellino talk about Jeff’s life of business building, risk taking, and culture shaping. His life is story-worthy: not only is he currently the Chief Culture Officer of 5, an energy advisory firm, but he’s also started a few bands, danced off-Broadway without formal training, and founded a safe ride initiative at Texas A&M. As he shares these and many other stories, Jeff delves into the guiding principles behind his life, most especially the fearlessness to embrace awkwardness and create a life worth living.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

80. Live in the Light: Anna Carter

Anna Carter, co-founder of the Eden Invitation, talks with Marcellino about the sense of adventure and community that defined her childhood—through books, family life, and her home parish—and has accompanied her throughout her journey. This “pilgrim faith” set Anna on a course of continual discovery; she tells the story of coming to understand her gender and sexuality, and how vulnerability about her same-sex attraction created even deeper relationships. She offers wisdom on everything from creating Trinitarian communities to living like you’re in Narnia.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

79. Business as Ministry: Tony Vasinda

In this episode, Tony Vasinda of Project YM tells Anthony the origin stories of Catholic Beard Balm and his up-and-coming card game Brandstanding. Tony explores the common threads uniting all of his projects and work: doing God’s will—and having fun doing it—while creating opportunities for people to be together. He shares his thoughts on supporting fellow artists (do it), meganspeaks.com (visit it), and detachment from finances (it’s the only way to live).

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

78. Unleash the Edmundo: Edmundo Reyes

This week, Anthony sits down with Edmundo Reyes, the Director of Communications for the Archdiocese of Detroit, and (with some fancy microphones) they chat about Edmundo’s missionary enthusiasm. They talk about the retreat during his time in college that set Edmundo on a path to God and solidified the calling on his heart to be a missionary in whatever capacity the Lord wanted. This call guides his life; he discusses how God’s will fuels him as he pioneers the Unleash the Gospel campaign in his archdiocese, encourages the Church to be innovative and collaborative, and brings revival to Detroit. All of this, he explains, because he has “Christian FOMO”—he fears missing out on any part of God’s plan.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.

77. From Costco to The Convo: Ian Cabrera

In this episode, Ian Cabrera shares how he went from A/V club dweeb to communications freelancer and host of The Convo podcast...so, like, still kind of an A/V club dweeb. Ian and Marcellino talk about the great and terrifying switch to freelance work—how it is freeing, exciting, scary, and kind of weird at times. They also delve into the time in Ian’s life when he was working at Costco and engaging in a nine-month Ignatian formation, a trying time that taught him to trust, wait, and beg God for help. Ian pulls back the curtain on why The Convo is a narrative-driven podcast, and shares his favorite stories from his time producing it.

Thank you to our Patreon sponsors for making this podcast possible.