A Night of Hope 2019
Thursday, December 12, 2019
7:00 p.m. Speakers
St. Robert Bellarmine
119010 Pacific St.
Omaha, NE 68154
Mainelli Parish Center
Watch our A Night of Hope 2019 Video Replay
“Finding Joy & Gladness While Living with Metastatic Cancer”
My story is like so many others’ stories! I was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer in September 2013; cancer had already spread to my liver. With advances in medicine, I, and many people like me, are living with metastatic cancer for long periods of time. As my oncologist reminds me, I’ve beaten the statistics – meaning I’ve lived way beyond my expected expiration date!
Throughout the last six years, with the exception of a few months in 2014, I’ve received chemotherapy treatments. I’ve been accused of not complaining about my illness and treatment, which is not true; just ask my husband and two grown children. I will admit that I have been blessed with an optimistic attitude about the future that is firmly rooted in my faith. That optimism is a direct result of hope, as demonstrated to me through the power, love and promises of God.
During the Night of Hope, I will share what gets me through the tough days, and how I find joy and gladness in all days. I’ll share with you how I got to this hope-filled place. My faith was planted and nurtured by my parents, Bob and Mary O’Leary, and the rest of my family, primarily as we sat around the kitchen table and talked. My faith has grown through the ordinary and extraordinary experiences of life: being a spouse, a mother, an employee, a member of St. Robert Bellarmine parish community, and a person now living with metastatic cancer.
“Recovering from Childhood Grievances”
I attended St. Robert’s for school, and still continue to go there for mass each week. At the age of three, my Mom passed away from cancer, I never understood the steps of grieving. The confusion with my Dad getting remarried when I was thirteen years old, and having a stepmom, along with another sibling and stepsiblings.
During high school, I started spiraling down by abusing drugs and alcohol. After high school came my worst days when I was drinking and doing drugs daily. All that led up to April 13th when I got arrested for an armed robbery that I committed with my then roommate. After I was released from jail, I struggled with depression and staying clean. Over time, my faith improved and my family relationships changed for the better.
Mickey Manley II
“And Then I Could See” Recovering from Family Suicide”
My name is Mick Manley, a name I proudly share with my late father. I have been married to my wife, Mandy, for five years and we have two daughters, Raylan and Parker.
I will be sharing the story of moving out of the darkness after losing my dad at age 47 to suicide to seeing the world I once knew to be black and white in an astonishing sea of color. I am excited to take you all through the journey of my family from tragedy to triumph as well as shine some light on the community efforts to destigmatize suicide and bring awareness to mental health. I want more lives to be saved than lost as we move closer to a world where no one is blind to all the love and light they leave behind.
“God’s Protection on my Family as our Farm Burned to the Ground”
My wife, Melissa and I have been married for 16 years. We are blessed with seven children. We attend Citylight Church in Council Bluffs, Ia.
I will be sharing how God protected our family as our farm burnt to the ground, His love as our family rebuilds after loss, and His gift of community as we hope in Him.
Of one thing I am perfectly sure: God’s story never ends with ‘ashes. – Elisabeth Elliot
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