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Episode 14 — Building Up Leaders in Foreign Lands

Mariel Conti (front row, centre) witnessed one of the lay missionaries based in Hong Kong renew her contract for another 10 years with the Quebec missionary organization in a church ceremony.

For Mariel Conti, studying business in university seemed like a sure path to success and a steady career. But once she met Jesus, she realized that there was much more to life than success. Her openness and faith helped her to fulfill her plans and dreams in other ways. One such example was her desire to travel in Asia. As God’s plan would have it, God called Mariel to serve in Hong Kong for three months in 2019. Now, she’s about to embark on a new mission: serving Catholic Christian Outreach as a full-time missionary.

All throughout Mariel’s journey, she was supported by a number of communities that helped her to grow and nourish her faith. When she was tasked with building up a community in Hong Kong for English speaking Catholics, she was challenged to deeper faith and trust, which she says ultimately helped her to grow in her missionary heart.

Take a listen to our conversation here:

"The very thing that I needed for my own spiritual growth was the thing that He wanted me to provide for the people." — Mariel Conti

Meet Mariel Conti

Mariel Conti studied Human Resources at the business school of Simon Fraser University. In the beginning of her university years, Mariel had dreamt of the “corporate life.” She attended numerous case competitions as an undergraduate and was involved in business clubs. However, the course of her life changed when she met a campus ministry called Catholic Christian Outreach (CCO). It was during this same time that she also became the head of a youth ministry. She first encountered Jesus then. As time went on, Mariel realized that she was filled with more joy serving in ministry as opposed to her extra-curriculars in business school. At this point, she knew that she was called to a life that is more than just corporate. In 2017, Mariel went on a 10-day mission to Mexico City and in 2019, she went on a mission in Hong Kong for over 3 months. In her final years of university, Mariel sought ways where she could serve her faith while practicing what she studied. Now, Mariel works as a full-time missionary with CCO; she will also be applying her business background by working in the CCO’s human resource department.


If you're interested in learning more about the St. Francis Xavier Lay Missionary Society and the work that they do, you can find them online at

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