Mary’s Hope was inspired by a desire to help even just one child have a brighter future. Growing up on a small island in New England with a loving mom and dad and five siblings, I never had to worry about where my next meal came from or if I would go to school. It was always just assumed that these necessities were a part of mine and everyone else’s life. I was pretty sheltered to say the least. God has always been a constant throughout my life. I went to a small Catholic high school and graduated from Salve Regina University, with an education and special education degree. I have been blessed to have married the love of my life and have three children, who fill my heart and days with joy. I have two older sons in their twenties and my daughter, Mary, who is ten. I have spent half my life in Rhode Island and the other half in North Carolina, where I now reside with my family and four noisy dogs. (They are lucky, they’re cute!) Spending time with my family and participating in church activities are the pleasures of my life.To say that I am blessed would be an understatement. God sent me on a mission trip to Guatemala in 2016, and He opened my eyes and heart to the needs of the people, especially the children, in this beautiful country. I realized that God’s world extends far beyond my doors, and that with His Guidance, I could make a difference, one child at a time. So, my journey has just begun. I hope you join me on the next chapter, as we start a school in Guatemala. “May God, the source of hope, fill you with all joy and peace by means of your faith in him, so that your hope will continue to grow by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
Born and raised in Rhode Island, I am from a family of three children- an older sister and me and a twin brother. I graduated from Providence College in 1986 and started working for the Internal Revenue Service in 1987, where I am still employed. Julie and I married in 1989, and had two boys, CJ and Robbie, before moving to North Carolina in 2006. In 2009 we had a daughter- Mary- our Southern Princess. I am a member of the Knights of Columbus at Holy Family Church in Clemmons, NC, where I am involved in the Respect Life movement. My interests include reading, walking, rooting for my favorite sports teams, and spending time with my family.
I hold an Undergraduate and Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Georgia and Georgia State. I taught nine years in the public school system near Atlanta, Georgia, where I was born. In 1990, I left the Atlanta area to support my husband, Joe, in his decision to further his education and broaden his career. Moving to North Carolina, I served the roles of wife, mother, and volunteer. My largest commitment has been raising my three girls. I have been a lead Faith Formation teacher for twenty-five years, helped with the Light a Luminary-Ronald McDonald Project, and have been a member of the Evangelization Committee, helping to organize missions and small faith building programs. In the Fall of 2016, a mission trip to Guatemala City fueled my decision to join Mary’s Hope, Inc. I feel that a quality education is the right of each child. My aim is to help a few children at a time.
I am a retired physician, as well as a wife, mother, and grandmother. Several years ago, while trying to find ways to serve others, I saw a notice in our church bulletin about a mission trip to Guatamala and signed up. My time there, working with orphans, as well as families living near Guatamala City, awakened me to the needs of the people there, and in particular the children. One day, we visited a small community, where a school was being built. We had raised funds to help with the school, and we also took school supplies and uniforms for the students. It seemed that the entire community was there to welcome us. They were very friendly and thankful for our help and so thankful for the hope that this would bring to their children for a better life. For this reason, I am excited to be part of Mary’s Hope, Inc., a group devoted to using their time and talent to establish a Christian elementary school in Guatamala.
Born on a US Air Force Base in Germany, I spent my childhood homeschooling, moving and traveling around the USA with my 2 brothers, mom and dad. I studied Theology and English in college, and then married my childhood sweetheart, Bob, in 2001 in West Virginia. Between 2003 and 2005, God blessed us with 3 lovely daughters, Allison, Hannah and Katelyn. Our family moved to Winston-Salem, North Carolina in 2007, where we have homeschooled all 3 girls from Kindergarten on. We are parishioners at Holy Family Catholic Church in Clemmons, NC, where I sing in the choir, help run an American Heritage Girls Troop, and participate in several different Bible and Book studies. A few of my favorite things: reading, writing, taking walks on cool & sunny mornings, spending time with God in prayer and Scripture, camping in the mountains, beautiful music, and the great blessing of spending time with my wonderful family and my incredible and inspiring friends.
Claudia Maria Roncal Duque
Claudia María Roncal Duque, our new project manager in Guatemala. Claudia is a native of Guatemala and has a degree in Clinical Psychology and Language Therapy from the University of San Carlos of Guatemala. Her professional merits include working with Hope Renewed International, Believe Guatemala, and Mineduc. Claudia’s love for God and her devotion to the children of Guatemala has shown in the programs that she has developed throughout the years. Her relationship with the people in the different communities in Guatemala and her belief in the importance of educating the children is a driving force in her determination to help us establish a school in Guatemala. We feel so happy and blessed to welcome Claudia.