Aug 30

ជំរាបសួរ! Cześć! Hello!

Hello! Those were the three languages I was immersed in this summer; Khmer (official language of Cambodia), Polish, and of course, English. After the craziest summer, I am happy to report that I am finally back in Louisiana. This summer the Lord has worked on me, He has pulled me, stretched me, and has set my heart ablaze for the mission! I owe a great thanks to you all for making it possible for all that the Lord to shown me.


200 Students!

While I was in Poland I was surrounded by mercy, love, and the worldwide church that was fully alive and well! Being there, I often reflected on the great need to be alive, be loved, and to embrace mercy from God the Father! Unfortunately, all three of these things are severely lacking on our college campuses across the nation. With that being said, I want to share with you how these are slowly changing on UL’s campus! At our first Ragin’ Cajun Catholic event, we had over 200 people come for fellowship, for encouragement, and to praise and worship the Lord! I repeat over 200 college students!!! 

Thank you so much for your support and prayers! Please keep praying for the conversion of hearts and a turn to mercy! And if there is anything you need prayers for, please let me know either here, email, text, call, any and all ways!


With much love,

Brenna O’Hara


PS here is my contact info!

Brenna O’Hara


Jul 18

First Year Update

Presented to Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish on July 16 and 17, 2016

Good morning/evening! And thank you again Father Glenn for this opportunity. Well, it has been about a year since I last stood here and told you about my mission with Focus. I was excited and passionate about what I was about to start doing, but the biggest feeling I had was fear. I knew on paper what to do, but I was afraid to leave my parish, my home, and my comfort zone! In this fear the Lord showed me my weakness of wanting to control everything. I was afraid of asking for financial support, I was afraid of moving to a different state, and I was afraid I was going to fail. He showed me slowly and gently that it wasn’t my job to control my life, it was His. Because the people of IHM are willing to help financially, I could have a home away from home (where butter is one of the main food groups), and as long as I said yes to Him, every moment of every day, I would not, and could not, fail.

By His grace, I not only survived this past year, but His mission thrived. None of this would have been possible without the army I have standing behind me here, in my home parish. I could never thank you all enough for your prayers, your care packages, and your financial support. Here are just a few things that you all have done in Southern Louisiana:

You have brought 13 women to commit their lives to the Lord.
You have helped feed them countless times.
You sent a few to a leadership conference in Dallas this past January.
And you have sent one of my girls and myself across the Pacific to serve the poor in Cambodia.

Sometimes we have a hard time seeing the fruit that bears through our giving and hard work, but I stand before you today to tell you, you are changing a generation that will someday change the world. Of course, there is still work to be done. There are still young people out there looking for love in all the wrong places, they are still looking to find something that will fulfill them, and they are not finding it. We, FOCUS and you all, are still fighting the good fight for the souls of our young people. There is still hope for this world; I see it every day around these college students, around my teammates, and through you.

I encourage you, as I return to The University of Louisiana this next year, to not give up on any of these students, to keep praying for their hearts to be transformed, and for the spiritual poverty we have in this country to turn into spiritual abundance. Mother Teresa, said “There are many in the world who are dying for a piece of bread but there are many more dying for a little love. The poverty in the West is a different kind of poverty — it is not only a poverty of loneliness but also of spirituality. There’s a hunger for love, as there is a hunger for God.” Thank you again for all that you have done this past year, and all that you continue to do to alleviate this hunger.

Mar 16

Be Silent and Listen

Well, what an eventful week it has been since I last talk to you all. Me and my teammate, Allison (the redhead), and I took a group of 5 beautiful women on a retreat this weekend to Nashville with the Dominican Sister of Saint Cecilia. Each one needed this opportunity for growth, for silence, and a help in laying it all down for the Lord. For me, and what I really want to share with you is, the beauty of silence is something that is powerful and something we don’t ever realize we need (that’s what I learned this weekend). In the chaos and craziness of the world, we don’t stop and realize that the Lord is standing right by our side and patiently waits for us to turn to Him and just be with Him

This year has taught me so much about how much of a gentleman the Lord is. The Lord with never force Himself on us but, that doesn’t mean He doesn’t stop waiting for us. How perfect and beautiful is that; He waits for every single one of us to finally turn to Him and see Him. For this last week of Lent, I want to challenge all of you to be silent and listen. Turn off your phone, stop distracting yourself with noise and being “busy,” turn and see the Lord, even more so, listen to what he wants to tell you. He may want to tell you how much He joy you have when you look at your children, it could also be how incredibly loved you are by Him and your spouse, or how you have been blessed with a beautiful family even when things get hard. He has been waiting to tell you something but, you need to stop with the noise and just listen. I’m not asking for an entire day with no noise, no, 15 minutes. Don’t take your phone to prayer, don’t play music when you drive to work, don’t read; just be with Him, just sit in silence, and honestly it is going to be incredibly uncomfortable. Why?! Well, because we are use to being “busybodies,” be silent and listen. That’s all He wants. He is waiting for you, are you ready to meet Him?

Mar 09

Prayers Needed!

Hey y’all! Things down here have been busier than ever but, if amongst all the craziness the Lord has continued to just pour His grace upon me. I would ask that you keep a few things in your prayers over the next few weeks.


The first: This weekend I am taking a group of young women on a retreat to Nashville, TN with the Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia. Please pray for them that they may find clarity in what the Lord is calling them to.

Second: A few weeks ago I went to a gathering of Southern Plains (the region I am apart of) missionaries and I was able to spend incredible time with some wonderful leaders within FOCUS and also our CEO Curtis Martin. That weekend really open up my eyes to the mission that we are all called to. At this gathering those who have applied to be a Team Director for next year and have qualified were there. It was an absolute privilege to be one of 60 leaders in the Southern Plains. I would ask you to please pray for my fellow missionaries and our organization, that the best 130 missionaries will be selected to become Team Directors for next year.

Thank you all for your continued support and prayers. My heart, thoughts, and prayers are always with you! Please let me know if I can pray for you in anyways either here or via email or phone call.

Peace and blessings!

Jan 20

I’m Back in the South!

I’m finally getting back into the swing of things here in Lafayette and there is so much to share! On January 1-5 we took a group of about 41 Ragin’ Cajuns to Dallas for a Summit that is put on by FOCUS. It was such an amazing experience, there were a total of about 3,000 people who were eager to learn more about the Lord and our Great Commision. Hearts were radically changed over the course of these 5 days, whether that was from our Adoration to the speakers, or their small groups to their sessions where they learned how to present the gospel to others. It was wild but, I got the chance to talk with many of our students about the highlights of their experience, I also had time to catch up with fellow missionaries from training. We shared many “war stories” about our campuses, the hard times that we all have gone through but also how the Lord has blessed our campuses.  It was great to meet the students that have been blessed to have my friends on their campus.

There are so many stories to share! Here is an article that seems to capture the realness of what SLS:

While I was there I was able to lead a group of women, all but one was greek and the other was an athlete, and help them to teach others and learn different techniques that would help them to share the good word of the Lord! Through them, I was reminded of why I am doing this, to go out and spread the word to all nations. Needless to say, these women helped to spark my heart back up to go out.

FullSizeRender 8

One final thought y’all, in the words of Father Mike Schmidt who spoke at the Summit, he tells us as all Christians, “You have to go out, but you don’t have to come back.”

Thank you all for your love, prayers, and gifts. I can’t wait to share another semester with you!

With much love from Lafayette,


Nov 20


BIG, BIG, BIG NEWS! Announcing the Super Bowl, Super Getaway benefitting the Ragin’ Cajun Catholics. Your ticket is your chance to win an incredible trip to Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco. Prize package for 2 includes: Super Bowl tickets (lower level!), Air fare from a major US airport, 3-night stay at the luxurious Queen Anne Hotel San Francisco, $400 Gift Certificate to the spectacular Waterbar Restaurant, VIP travel to and from the game, Taste of the NFL & NFL experience.

The Super Bowl® Super Getaway incredible prize package for two includes:

2 lower level tickets to Super Bowl® 50;
Round trip flight for 2 to San Francisco
3-night Stay at Queen Anne Hotel
VIP Transportation to and from the game
$400 gift certificate to dine at Waterbar on the waterfront
Taste of the NFL®
and The NFL® Experience.

Buy your chance to win today!

Ticket sales close Sunday, January 10, 2016 at 11:00 PM. Need NOT be present to win.

Nov 17

Giving Thanks!

I often have a hard time being thankful. This is for numerous reasons, one huge reason is because, I can often times be selfish. It has taken me some time now to be aware of this (still something that I am struggling with!!). But what I want to say now is thank you! Thank you for all of your prayers, your support, and your yes to this mission! I would not be where I am personally, spiritually, or professionally, if it weren’t for you all. I hope that I can talk with all of you and tell you exactly how much you have done for me!  You have all helped me in my relationship with Christ. You have helped others grow in a relationship with Christ. And you have strengthened the future of the Church and the world. Thank you all so much! Only a few more weeks till I can tell you some transforming stories!

Nov 04

What Do I Do?

I’m not going to lie, I have one of the best jobs in the world. Back in July I got asked, nearly everyday, “What exactly are you going to be doing?” And I would have given you a very well versed answer that would have most certainly answered your question but it wouldn’t have been an authentic answer. Being here on campus, many people are confused and wonder, ‘if you don’t go to school at ULL, what do you do?’ Some students will say that, “The FOCUS missionaries are basically professional friends.” How incredibly wrong they are.

So, what do I do?
I am a soldier. I am at war. I am at war for souls. And my Commander is Christ Jesus. I fight next to all of the Saints in Heaven (canonized and those who aren’t), I pray for Mary to protect me, and I ask Jesus to use me daily as His soldier. This is a war that never sleeps, never rests, it is a war that is always raging on. I encounter souls everyday, some that I am familiar with and others that I have never met before. No matter the soul, stranger or not, I fall in love with. I pray for them. I pray that Christ opens their hearts up to His love. I pray that they see the Lord in others, but before that, I pray they see the Lord in themselves. I pray for open eyes, open hearts, and opportunity to act upon what students have seen and heard. I am a teacher. I teach others about how to equip themselves to enter into this war. I teach them what it means to have a true relationship with Christ (and other souls). I teach them how to dive deeper into the Word of God. I live a life that is totally centered around Christ Jesus. I have put myself and my selfishness aside so that he may work through me. I ask him to take over my heart, my thoughts, my words, and my actions.

I live with my students, I study when they study, I talk when they need to talk, I eat when they want to eat, I share my life with them and they share theirs. I love them. Not just one of them, but all of them.

Oct 28

Life with Him at the Center pt 1.

Hey y’all (that’s the extent to my Louisiana twang)! What a few weeks it has been! So many wonderfully beautiful things are happening down here on the Bayou! Recently, I have slowly realized the true struggles of young college students, more specifically though, young college women. I have been talking with a young woman who is really struggling with who she is, who she wants to be, and how she feels she should act in accordance to be accepted in society. Personally, my own story has a lot to do with what she is going through now, “who am I?” “I will be happy when…” “I want this because I see other happy people with it.” It is very hard to see a young woman not know who she is, not to see that she is a beloved daughter of Christ and she is beautiful.  It is hard to see who we truly are when we close ourselves off to our Father.

I can see how hard this can be for those who are leaving home for the first time, our young people need our help now. The world can be a lonely, empty, and a numbing place. We were never asked to live this life alone, though at many times we feel lonely. The world that we live in has so many empty promises, “If you do this, you will be happy…” And after some time, we become so use to falling into sin that doing the right thing doesn’t seem right because we fear not being accepted. So, you begin to live day to day for yourself, instead of living our gift of life for the Lord and our brothers and sisters.

Pray for the young women who are struggling with who they are and pray that they see how truly loved and valued they are!


Oct 06

Team Life!

Oh man! We have just gotten off fall break, and let me tell you, it was much needed! We have been going and going since early August, but I wouldn’t change a single thing about it. We have been on 2 missionary summits, held a fairly large retreat at the beginning of school, have helped put on 2 evening retreats, moved in freshman, signed people up for bible studies, started leading bible studies, and have invited people into discipleship…It has been such a wonderful experience so far. But today, I want to share with you the people that I met back in June, my team. There are 6 of us, Sean (far left), Julie (right side of Sean), Janna Clare (to the right of Julie), Allison (to the right of Janna Clare), Nathan (far right) and myself. The Lord has truly blessed me with each of them, through what the have taught me and how much joy they have brought me in this radical time of change!

Sean – Sean is our team director, which is really no surprise. Sean has such a great zeal for this mission and the University of Louisiana. As a team director, he has really helped me in understanding what the heck I am doing here. As a brother in Christ he is hilarious, he has some pretty sweet dance moves and always seems to have something witty to say. What really inspires me about Sean is how in love he is with Christ and the mission, he really does bring the mission into every aspect of his life and, even he, admits that picking up our cross is this mission is hard but it is worth it. Thank you Lord of the gift of my brother Sean.

Julie – Julie is a December grad (almost a ULL Alum!!), and sadly, she will be leaving us to go spread the word of God to another campus in January. Julie has been student teaching since school has started, she wakes up every morning but on her super cute teacher clothes and teaches an 8th grade English class at a local school. She often comes home and has some hilarious story about her students doing something crazy (oh middle school!). Julie has taught me that it is okay, and often times needed, to embrace ones emotions. Her and I have had some pretty great heart to hearts where one of us has cried (sometimes both). Lord, I am so thankful that you have put my dear sister Julie on my team!

Janna Clare – Or as we all call her JC!!! Janna Clare is like that little sister who is always excited and ready to go! She makes me laugh all the time and just brings the team up with her goofy facial expressions, the crazy things she says, and most importantly her wild dance moves! JC and I are extremely different when it comes to a lot of things, for example, she is very much a morning person…I, on the other hand, am not! But we have found so much common ground, and above all, her and I both love Jesus. She has done such a wonderful job here on campus and I am so happy that she has become like the little sister I always wanted (she even lets me wear her clothes!!) Oh Lord, thank you so much for the gift of my sister Janna Clare, she brings so much laughter to the team and brings me so much joy!

Allison – Allison is a part of Varsity Catholic (all of her disciples are competing athletes for ULL) and it very much shows. She is an athlete through and through. Allison is very driven when it comes to her girls and it is really always so fun to hear her stories and conversion for her soccer girls. Allison, is most definitely the mom of our group, she helps Sean in anything that he needs but she is also so available to us (mostly me and all my questions about things), but she is also such good friends with all of her disciples…which I mean is the goal here! She has taught me that as much as we have to be available to our students, we also have to be here for one another as a team, we have to help each other excel just as much as our students. Lord, thank you for the gift of your daughter, and my sister, Allison and all her words of encouragement.

And last, but most certainly not least, Nathan – Nathan is very much the silent but deadly type. Most of the time Nathan is somewhere out in space and we don’t know what happens on those little trips he takes during meetings, but when he comes back down to earth he has some hilarious to add or something super profound. Nathan and I have been in the same boat for a lot of the past 2 months, not knowing exactly why we are are here but loving every single minute of it. Nathan has such a passion to learn more about the faith and help others to want the same thing. The other day I took him to the airport and with a huge grin on his face he told me about how he asked one the guys here, Jo, into discipleship. The pure joy that came from him was so incredible to see. Thank you Lord for making Nathan apart of this team, for his humor and his heart.

Lord, I ask you to keep blessing team UL and helping us all learn and grow from one an other. Thank you so much for these beautiful, funny, passionate brothers and sisters! I could not do it without them.


Older posts «