Michelle Aucoin

Campus Leader, Carleton University
michelle.aucoin@cco.ca
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I am the baby of my family with an older sister, Kim, and older brother, Shawn. Our family of five is from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, but right now we are all spread out in different places in North America. Despite our distance, we always prioritize visits to each other.

Growing up, my family didn’t regularly go to Mass or practice our faith together. It wasn’t until high school that I found myself at a Catholic youth retreat, and for the first time I heard about how much God loved me and that Jesus died on the cross for me. Everything I learned there was new to me. I came home and I was so in love with Jesus! But, I came home from those short three days and went back into my normal high school life. I went back into the party lifestyle because that is what I knew. Eventually though, a few months later, I had become more and more unhappy and unfulfilled. One night, I ran into a friend I knew through the youth retreat, and it was in talking to them that I realized – whatever it was that they had, I wanted it. They had such a deep joy and sense of peace about them, so I went home and decided that something had to change. And it did. This is when I chose God. It was through a continued friendship with that person that made me question my faith, it challenged me in my faith, and it allowed me to see the great potential that I had. As I have been growing in my relationship with God ever since, and learning more about His love for me, I am continuing to fall more in love with Him. My greatest desire is to watch others encounter this love with the Father, and that is exactly what I get to do with CCO.

I am now the Campus Leader at Carleton University. I love my job. Journeying with other young women in their walk with Christ is an incredible blessing. The Lord has given me so many opportunities to witness young women put Jesus at the centre of their lives. There is nothing that compares to the joy that I have when I witness someone authentically choosing Christ. I am blown away every time that I am able to watch people recognize how God is working in their lives, when they encounter Him in a new way, and being in it with them when God opens their heart to share His love with others.

Leading Discovery faith studies has been the most wonderful gift I have had in my time with CCO. I led 26 young women in Discovery in my first year on campus, and my walk with each of these girls has been very unique.

One young woman that I met in September was a first year student at Carleton, and although she grew up in a Catholic family, she was not living in a dynamic relationship with the Lord. I knew the Lord was putting this woman on my heart, and I was excited to be journeying with her as she began growing in her faith throughout Discovery. I quickly witnessed God transforming her heart and giving her the desire to share His love with others. Because of this, I challenged her to co-lead a Discovery faith study with me in the second semester. I was able to watch her grow into a wonderful leader over the next four months, caring for the souls of others so beautifully. Completing this, she went on to lead her own Discovery in the summer. I am still witnessing her reach personal goals in her spiritual life, and witnessing how God is forming her into an amazing leader in His Church!

I cannot find words to describe how much being on staff has allowed me to grow. I am continually being challenged in obedience and in my trust in the Lord. I have recognized the beauty in relying on Him and being confident in His plan. I am so thankful for all of the growth that I have been able to experience in just one year, and for all of the amazing staff that have helped shape me into the missionary, and woman, I am now.

ONGOING PRAYER REQUESTS

Please pray for all CCO missionaries, for the students who have been touched by CCO, and for my family.

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