She came to this country a skeptic.
At twenty-two years of age, Maria came to Chicago from Moskow. She received an MBA from DePaul University in 2016. She is a data analyst for the analytics company Networked Insights located in downtown Chicago. Not growing up in a Christian environment she came to this country a skeptic. However, someone gave her a copy of Lee Strobel’s book The Case for Christ. She considered its claims because they were presented logically. Connecting with a pastor, and after dealing with intellectual doubts, she began to realize that Christ is the only person that could really give the love and affection that she was seeking. God is with us. She has been fortunate to have an amazing mentor, Jody Sawyer, at Moody Church.
Maria has been a TBG partner since the spring of this year. She came to her first TBG meeting in the fall of last year, having had met several people that had a connection to TBG. Rick Kroner from the Metropolitan Club, and connections with K. J. Johnson and Art Holton from the CS Lewis Fellowship Program, a one-year Christian discipleship program that she was involved in. She had also talked with Mary Potter who was very welcoming to her.
She said that the importance of the TBG partnership at this time is critical as we are called to build the Kingdom.
Being a young professional, she is passionate about using her skills to build the Kingdom and bringing positive change. Regarding someone considering becoming a TBG partner, she said that it is a great opportunity for those who are called to and want to work with ministries. She gave these three reasons. First, partners have great experience in many industries to help. Second, there are a diverse set of ministries that come to make presentations. Third, TBG is very hands on.
She has a heart towards women’s issues.
Maria’s passions involve helping people who are diminished or do not have opportunities for chances to thrive, disadvantaged people who are not being heard or not considered valuable. Specifically, she has a heart towards women’s issues such as teen pregnancy, abortion, and domestic violence.
In answering, “ How does the story of Nehemiah building the wall apply to you and your life?”, she said that Nehemiah relied on God. God was the source of his energy. When those who started to interrupt him, he knew how not to be disrupted or distracted from what he was doing. So like Nehemiah, She knows that God is her source and that God will help her during challenges, keep her from distractions and disruptions, to be brave and courageous, to take risks, and trusting and being lead by God.