SOCA's Founding and Influences
Founder's Story: Kevin Roerty
My hometown is Fort Collins, CO. After a sinful start to high school, I had a deep conversion to the faith and was inspired by mysticism, as well as developed a zeal for evangelization. I proceeded to discern with friars in France, living there for two years. After determining I had a call to more front-line evangelization, I came back to the United States and became a FOCUS missionary. While in FOCUS, I blended my learning and experience of a rich and regimented spiritual life along with the dynamic apostolic outreach of FOCUS. This synthesis led to the founding of "Souls of the Christian Apostolate (SOCA)" in 2018, based on a book that was part of the formation reading for both the friars and FOCUS missionaries: The Soul of the Apostolate by Dom Chautard. Priests from Denver caught wind of this idea and invited me to implement SOCA. A few months into doing the ministry, I met Benjamin Hoyer--after receiving his Masters and a few months of assisting with events, he joined full-time as Vice President to help with SOCA's foundation.
The Soul of the Apostolate
This spiritual classic (Pope Saint Piux X's "bedside reading") proves that ministry must stem from personal holiness which is found in intimacy with Christ through daily meditative prayer (combating activism). Formation geared toward this intimacy builds zealous, competent, and grace-filled apostles. SOCA aims to utilize dynamic attraction (such as with FOCUS) to gain the attention of youths (and eventually all ages of Catholics), and then implement The Soul of the Apostolate in discipleship with a very practical plan of formation.
A Practical Mission
SOCA's mission is "to evangelize with apostles formed in doctrine, liturgy, culture, and especially the interior life." The cornerstone of SOCA's formation is a rule of life (daily meditation, rosary, and spiritual reading) and accountability (by tracking successes/failures). Our missionaries mentor our members (disciples) and provide accountability. We also believe the beautiful reverence of our Catholic heritage, as well as the eternal and supernatural truths it contains, is critical in the message to win the souls of today's youths who are desperate for roots and eternal meaning. Catholics have always evangelized organically through our culture and traditions--this is instrumental in our mission.
A Unique Approach
SOCA’s method combines relational discipleship (like FOCUS) with a rule-based living (like Exodus 90), allowing us to scale and expand efficiently with chapter coordinators (ex: ministry or parish leaders). SOCA’s universal simplicity, little time investment, and progressive involvement of the rule allows for smooth cooperation and mutual enrichment with other ministries. SOCA’s clear, progressive, and lifelong stages of formation assures in-depth and holistic discipleship in a unique way we do not see done elsewhere.
SOCA's main target currently is the Auraria campus in Denver which has over 50,000 students (the largest in Colorado) and no missionaries. We also work with young adults in Denver as well as multiple satellite chapters across the US. In 14 months (as of December 2019), SOCA has gained over 25+ disciples, hosted 140+ attendees at events, received 15,000+ online video views, developed a template of stages of formation (phone app in progress), hired a Vice President (our second full time missionary) with a Masters in Theology from the Augustine Institute, welcomed three priestly chaplains/advisors, and received Archbishop Aquila's endorsement.
The primary influences for SOCA include:
-The Soul of the Apostolate by Dom Chautard
-The Life of Saint Teresa of Avila by herself
-Three Ages of the Interior Life by Father Garrigou-LaGrange