Women's MInistry in the Diocese of Jefferson City


Coordinator of Women's Ministry
LeAnn Korsmeyer
573.635.9127, ext. 222

Alphonse J. Schwartze Catholic Center
2207 West Main St | PO Box 104900
Jefferson City, MO 65110-4900

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Spiritual Directors

This list of spiritual directors was generated by the Women's Ministry office in the Diocese of Jefferson City. You can click on the cities below to open the tab of spiritual directors in each area. In each tab we have included contact information and a short biography of each spiritual director for you so that you might learn a bit about these women and reach out to them for direction.

We will continue to update this list throughout the year, so feel free to share this resource with others or check back again in the future!

Columbia (2)

Sr. Karen Freund, OP

  • Parish: St. Thomas More Parish
  • Location: 602 Turner Ave., Columbia, MO 65201
  • Phone: (573) 449-5424
  • Email: srkaren@comonewman.org
  • Website: www.comonewman.org
  • Available: In-person or direction via Phone

I am Sr. Karen Freund, Pastoral Associate at St. Thomas More Newman Center Parish in Columbia, MO. In my work there I participate in a number of pastoral ministries, one of which is spiritual direction. I am a Domini- can Sister of Springfield, IL, where my initial formation took place. My formal study has been at DePaul University, the University of Notre Dame, St. Louis University, and Catholic Theological Union. My on-going formation, like yours, continues.

In my years in religious life I have taught middle and upper grades, high school English and Theology, and been parish director in several parishes with no resident priest. Within my religious community, I have served as Novice Director and a member of our Leadership Council. I love being a spiritual director because it allows me to draw not only on the formal preparation I have had for that ministry but on the experience of all my previous ministries as well.

I believe spiritual direction helps people claim a deepening relationship with God. As director, I listen and discuss prayer, faith, and everyday living—reflecting back what I hear. The desired end for both director and directee is awareness of grace, calling us to bring God’s compassionate love to fuller expression through our own right relationships. You have probably seen Picasso’s colorful painting of the hands and flowers. For me, it is an apt icon of this ministry. You can’t tell which hand is giving and which is receiving the bouquet. This relationship challenges me to practice what I preach.

Spiritual direction is about fidelity to the journey. It helps us see and talk about the signs along the way. It helps us recognize the Spirit’s promptings toward balance and wholeness. It nurtures deeper, more contemplative living. Growth is ultimately immeasurable, felt in relationships—with God, others, ourselves, creation. We grow better at giving of ourselves and being really present to others. I am happy to accompany those I meet along the way.

Lisa Rose, Spiritual Direction, Diocese of Jefferson City Women's Ministry Lisa Rose

My name is Lisa Rose. I’ve been a life-long Roman Catholic and am married with three adult children. I’ve worked in ministry for over 20 years, most of that time in areas that give me the opportunity to interact with people from many different faith backgrounds. When I felt called to pursue formation in spiritual direction, I was drawn to the “Souljourners” program at Mt. St. Scholastica in Atchison, Kansas.

Among other aspects, the ecumenical nature of the program attracted me and contributed to the wonderful experience of those three years.

Journeying with others in the ministry of spiritual companionship (also known as spiritual direction) affords me the privilege to witness and share the countless ways God enters our lives and communicates with us. We encounter The Divine not only through scripture and religious services, but also in nature, through other people, in our everyday activities, through dreams, and in the “God winks” we experience in our lives. I look forward to continuing to help others recognize and savor moments of Divine Encounter while concurrently growing in my own relationship with Christ on this spiritual journey we call life.

Lee's Summit (1)

Monica Galazara

  • Parish: Our Lady of the Presentation Catholic Parish
  • Location: Lee's Summit, MO 64081-1558
  • Phone: 573-465-3628
  • Email: mLL20047@hotmail.com
  • Available: In-person or via Zoom video conferencing

I am a Catholic laywoman, wife, mother, and grandmother, I have spent 20 years serving in retreat ministry and various adult faith formation roles.

I discerned a call to the ministry of spiritual direction through the encouragement of others in my community, formation at Aquinas Institute of Theology — a Dominican University in Saint Louis, Missouri, and the persistence of the Holy Spirit.

Having worshipped and served in the Jeffer- son City Diocese for 16 years, I recently relocated to the Kansas City area. I work full-time as an executive assistant which provides the means to both support my ministry financially and gives me an intimate understanding of the struggle of walking with God and living one’s faith in the busyness of everyday life.

I meet with women of all faiths or those still searching, members of the LGBTQ community, those suffering from addictions, and the friends and family who support them. I experience spiritual direction as a way to listen and discover how much we are loved by God. I am available to meet if you are seeking spiritual direction, want to know more about it, or aren’t quite sure.  Know that you are loved.

I am available to meet via Zoom video conferencing or in-person in the Kansas City area.

Jefferson City (3)

Alice Kuehn, PhD, RN Alice Kuehn, PhD, RN

Alice received her basic nursing education from St. John’s Hospital School of Nursing in St. Louis, a BSN from Catholic University, MSN from UCSF, and her doctorate from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She taught at MU from 1967-1980, then at Lincoln University from 1980 to 1987. She returned to MU in 1987 and was appointed in 1989 as coordinator of the Family Nurse Practitioner areas of study in the graduate nursing program at the MU Sinclair School of Nursing during which time she testified extensively before the Missouri House and Senate in support of the expanding role of Missouri's advanced practice nurses. She served as primary faculty for the GNP area of study for over ten years and maintained a primary care clinical practice focused on care of the older adult. During her last ten years at MU she developed an international exchange program supported by the U.S.Department of Education in which nurse faculty from six universities - two each from Canada, Mexico, and the United States - worked together to develop an online course in which students studied the history, culture, health care systems and nurse role in each of the three countries of North America. Over 96 undergraduate/graduate nurse students from the six partner sites participated in immersion exchange experiences in a host country as well as assisting in facilitating the immersion experiences of student guests in their country.

Although retired in 2010 she now works as a parish nurse for St. Peter Catholic Church in Jefferson City, being certified in 2003. In this role she offers health education, promotes healthy lifestyles through the parish bulletin and newsletter, and provides emotional and spiritual guidance to individuals and their families facing health-related situations and challenges. She completed a 3-year program for Pastoral Ministry, offered through the Diocese of Jefferson City in 2004 and also serves as a spiritual director, being certified since 2005. The formation received in both the pastoral ministry and spiritual direction programs helps immensely in her work as a parish nurse. She is married since 1967 to John Kuehn and they have four children and nine grandchildren. In addition to parish nursing, spiritual direction, and family activities, she enjoys travel, gardening, history, and music, most recently, playing the pipe organ at St. Peter’s.

Susen Renner

Following my completion of the Spiritual Direction formation course through the Diocese of Jefferson City about 10 years ago, I took some time to continue my own inner work. To be honest, I did not feel comfortable “marketing” myself, but I did tell God that I would happily see whomever He sent to me. God has been generous.

My areas of special interest are scripture (especially the psalms), using the enneagram in spirituality, Al-Anon and grief work. My favorite mystics and spiritual teachers are Julian of Norwich, Thomas Merton, and Franciscan Fr. Richard Rohr as well as 15th century Carmelite Brother Lawrence and his “The Practice of the Presence of God”.

My hope and prayer as a spiritual companion is to see God in the every-day, to recognize how deeply we are loved, and to share it.

Mary Jo Hitz

  • Parish: St. Peter’s Catholic Church
  • Location: Jefferson City, MO
  • Phone: (573) 230-3476 (home)
  • Email: Maryj52.Mary@aol.com

I am Mary Jo Hitz. I am the second oldest of six children. My youngest brother has special needs and I am his caregiver.

I was a registered dietitian in my early career, having worked for the Veteran’s Administration, MU Medical Center and St. Marys Health Center as a critical care dietitian and educator.

In 2000, I received my Master’s Degree in Pastoral Ministry with an emphasis in Spiritual Direction. I also completed a two-year course in spiritual direction offered by the Jefferson City Diocese and received my certification. I’ve had training in post-abortion care through Rachel’s Voice. I worked as an RCIA Director/Pastoral Minister at St. Peter Parish, Jefferson City, for 18 years. During this time, I accompanied several people on their faith journeys. I have also walked with other individuals as they sought a closer relationship with God. I retired in 2016 from my position at St. Peter Parish.

Spiritual Direction has been an important part of my spiritual journey. It is about a sacred, listening presence and I would enjoy walking with others as they search for a deeper spirituality and a more active prayer life.

Available by Skype or Video (1)

Monica Galazara

  • Parish: Our Lady of the Presentation Catholic Parish
  • Location: Lee's Summit, MO 64081-1558
  • Phone: 573-465-3628
  • Email: mLL20047@hotmail.com
  • Available: In-person or via Zoom video conferencing

If you have questions about this ministry or would like to learn more about spiritual direction or how to become a spiritual director, please contact LeAnn Korsmeyer.

Upcoming Events

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