For many years, the Christian Leadership Institute has brought high school students from across the Diocese of Owensboro to the Mount Saint Joseph Conference and Retreat Center to help develop their leadership potential.
In 2017, CLI also sewed some seeds of romance.
Jose’ Solorza and Emily Linn were volunteers in 2017 and fell in love. When Jose’ decided to propose to Emily in the summer of 2019, he knew there would be no better place to do so than at the Mount. He contacted Sister Mary Matthias Ward, director of the Retreat Center, to help carry out his plan.
“Jose’ had a plan in mind, and Sister Mary Matthias and Christina Barnard (Emily’s youth minister from Blessed Mother Church) helped him carry it out,” said Michele Linn, Emily’s mother. “Jose’ and Christina hatched a plan where Christina messaged Emily there would be a planning meeting at the Mount at 6 p.m. that Saturday to discuss some changes to CLI. Emily and Jose’ both loved working CLI so Emily was all in … hook, line and sinker!”
“Sister Mary Mathias was so gracious and accommodating allowing the families a place to hide and watch the proposal, and everyone ran out to surprise them right after it happened!” Michele Linn said. “She even allowed both families to celebrate together in the conference room with pizza and cake! It was a beautiful evening!” The happy couple will be married on June 20, 2020, at Blessed Mother.
Here are some pictures from the special weekend.