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Catholic News Herald

Serving Christ and Connecting Catholics in Western North Carolina

112417 Virginia Lieto bookGASTONIA — RCIA coordinator, children’s book author, theology professor at St. Joseph’s College of Maine, communications liaison for the N.C. Catholic Writers Guild, Catholic blogger, and now, national Catholic speaker.

Virginia Lieto is spending more and more of her time evangelizing and communicating with Catholics, including a recent presentation on the theological virtues in Gastonia that is being taped for her work with a national Catholic speakers bureau.

St. Michael the Archangel Church hosted a mini-retreat last month featuring a segment of Lieto’s popular full-day retreat called “Living a Virtuous Life.” Lieto delivered a thought-provoking performance encouraging all to “love your enemies, do good to those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:27). She engaged the crowd in discovering the true meaning of “charitable self-giving love,” with compelling stories from her life.

However, unlike her usual presentations, Lieto was illuminated by six huge spotlights during her talk in Gastonia. Local videographer Zac Brakefield, from Maximilian Media LLC, with about five video cameras rotating around Lieto, turning the parish’s Family Life Center into Lieto’s first videotaped event.

“This is no different than giving a presentation without being filmed. My focus is on the participants, with the goal of making sure that each person leaves feeling like they learned something new,” Lieto said. “Zac’s process of filming is very non-invasive. He is a true pro. It is very easy to work with him.”

“Ginny is going to knock their socks off,” said Brakefield, referencing Lieto’s new connection with www.cmgbooking.com, a top resource worldwide for Catholic speakers.

After a lengthy process of submitting writing samples, references and her resume, Lieto received an invitation to join an elite fleet of 300 highly recommended national Catholic motivational speakers. Maximilian Media LLC filmed the event to give Lieto the demo tape needed for her profile page with the booking agency.

Lieto said she felt extremely fortunate to work with Brakefield, as he is known throughout the Diocese of Charlotte for providing quality videos for weddings and other events, as well as testimonials, marketing and corporate videos.

Overall, Lieto reminds people that she has a very simple philosophy: “If you want to learn how to be a good Catholic, embrace the virtues.”

With God’s help, she said she hopes to evangelize Catholics all over the world through her award-winning blog, www.virginialieto.com, children’s book and speaking engagements.
Where does she go from here? She replies, “I have no idea where the Holy Spirit is taking me. I wake up every day and see what happens. I know God will take care of everything.”
— Lisa Geraci, correspondent