Ann’s passion for serving the Church flows from a deep personal encounter with Jesus Christ. In spite of her background in education, this encounter occurred, interestingly enough, while she was serving as a tennis teaching professional, and she realized that the Lord was waiting for a response from her – indeed, the ball was in her court.
After taking time to learn how to pray, she became involved in the faith formation of 9th graders. One of the first challenges was the complete lack of textbooks. In teaching the young people what she was learning through personal prayer, the thirst to lead others to Christ began to grow. After a year as a full-time youth minister, Ann received a graduate degree in Theology and Christian Ministry with a specialization in Catechetics. Her undergraduate degree is in French and Education.
Following four years as a DRE for two parishes in Nebraska, Ann began serving the Diocese of La Crosse, WI as the Director for Catechesis and Evangelization. In her thirteen years of service since, she has assisted catechetical leaders, catechists, Catholic school administrators, teachers, and priests with the implementation and building up of religious education programs, adult faith formation, and evangelization efforts for parish renewal. Her experience has included providing priests and catechetical leaders with consultation on a wide variety of challenging situations.
At heart, Ann is a “people person.” Developing resources is for her and those she works with an endeavor that must always be truly practical, personally relevant and life giving. One such resource is the Virtue Program for young people and their parents. She has also composed written resources to accompany popular Catholic DVD’s. Helping children, young people, and adults to fall in love with Jesus Christ and to be more fully committed to Him in every area of their lives gives her great joy.
Ann Lankford is a faith-filled and enthusiastic presenter who is passionate about helping parishes form healthy leadership teams. With several recent additions to my parish staff, the two-day leadership training led by Ann, together with Chris Ruff, has helped to make our team better communicators and united in purpose. We continue to benefit from that intentional time together in our enlivened, dynamic weekly staff meetings and daily through our cohesive team unity.
– Rev. Msgr. Richard M. Colletti, Vicar General/Chancellor, Diocese of Winona, MN, Rector of the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Pastor St. Casimir; Chaplain of Newman Center
Our Parish School has benefited from the outstanding work of Evangelium’s Ann Lankford and Christopher Ruff. Their expertise in team-building dynamics, together with their fidelity to the Catholic Church, is a rare combination. Our School Staff, like so many today, is in need of renewal in its Catholic identity and mission. I am grateful to Ann and Christopher for their crucial assistance in this renewal.
– Fr. William Baer, Pastor, Transfiguration Catholic Church, Oakdale, MN
Ann helped provide a training for the new shared leadership team that now assists me in pastoring my two parishes. It was enormously helpful and proved to be an energizing two days. By the end of it, all nine of us were super-excited to be working together as a cohesive team. Now, four months later, the enthusiasm and positive energy has endured among the members. In addition to coaching us on how to work through conflicts and build greater accountability, she also helped us to see the strengths within our parishes and to become passionate about a shared vision. We are very grateful.
– Fr. Derek Sakowski, Pastor, St. Mary Parish, Altoona, and St. Raymond Parish, Fall Creek, WI
Evangelium is a terrific apostolate and I felt so incredibly inspired and empowered after the training. I have always felt very close to my coworkers, but you managed to build that bond even more. Evangelium has built a solid, professional, knowledgeable team that truly knows how to work with Cathholic groups. I felt very honored to be among all of you.
– Susan Chabot, Wood Rose Academy, Concord, CA