Rev. Melissa Hill Greenbaum
I am a proud mother of two boys (ages 11 and 17). I am an honored wife to be married for 21 years to Mr. David Marc Greenbaum. Our pets are Dan the Euromastyx, Dakota, the cherry headed tortoise and a goldfish named Blueie. We have lived in Fort Myers the past 7 years.
I hold a B.S. Degree from Florida State University in the field of Social Work and a Certificate of Ordination from One Spirit Interfaith Seminary in NYC, USA.
Currently I serve as a chaplain at Unity of Naples in Naples, Florida and prepare and facilitate Christian worship services at Brookdale North senior living facility once a month in north Naples. I have my own part-time officiant business called Interfaith Expressions.
Born in Charlotte, North Carolina, I spent my youth living in both South and North Carolina. I believe my life experiences have lead me to where I am today: serving humanity with a spiritual focus on living consciously every day!
Building and Grounds Maintenance
Buck is the Coordinator of Building and Grounds Maintenance. His work is central to all aspects of landscaping, and general maintenance for the House of Prayer Retreat Center. Buck loves to spend time with his loving wife Cheryl.
Board of Directors
House of Prayer is governed by an active Board of Directors who serve two-year renewable term. The Board consists of committed Christian men and women who have themselves benefited from the ministry of the House of Prayer. They attend board meetings and make decisions with hearts attentive to the House of Prayer mission, as well as hearts shaped by their own skills and talents in the business world.
Jim Green- is a real estate broker and developer residing in the local area. Raised in Butler, Pennsylvania, he spent time in Annapolis Maryland, Munich Germany and the Caribbean. He received a Bachelor and Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame. Jim is a member of Saint Vincent DePaul Community Parish and Knights of Columbus Council 9618. He is active in local government affairs and serves as a Commissioner of the Lee County Housing Authority and Member of the Lee County Local Planning Agency.
Judith Hartner-Giandelone- is a retired physician. She was the health officer for Lee County for over twenty years. Judith was introduced to House of Prayer by Joan Cabai, former Board member. She has served on a number of boards and committees during her career including the American Red Cross, Salus Care, and Healthy Start data committee. Judith and her husband John live in Gateway.
Joyce Kessel- started coming to the Richard Rohr series at HOP three years ago. The purity and beauty of the retreat center’s environment, and the depth and variety of its many programs called her back again and again. She became a board member last year because she saw an opportunity to support and promote this special place of peace. Joyce is a retired college instructor and Learning Center Manager. She has served on a number of boards and committees during her career and in her community. Presently she volunteers for three non-profit organizations and tutors teen mothers at LAMP. A daughter and four grandchildren live in California while Joyce and her husband Tom Clark live in Cape Coral.
Don Ruane- is a former full-time journalist who now splits his time between reporting and community service projects. Don and his wife Laura are former presenters for Worldwide Marriage Encounter and past coordinators of the marriage preparation days in Lee County for the Catholic Diocese of Venice. Don also is a volunteer at St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church’s pantry and newsletter editor for the Alva Inc. community planning group. He and Laura have three children, four grandchildren and a furry dog affectionately known as Mindy LaBelle. Don and Laura live in Alva.
Maria Loffredo Roca, PhD- is a retired college teacher who has studied at the Jung Institute in Switzerland and is certified in Contemplative Spiritual Companioning.
Barbara Darling – lifetime professional focus was accompanying small Christian communities locally, nationally and internationally in her work with Buena Vista, with the Latin American/North American Church Concerns at the University of Notre Dame’s Kellogg Center, and with the Center for Mission Research and Study at Maryknoll. She is the author of Getting a Grip on Your Group and, with Jack Ventura, SM, Creating Small Christian Communities: Minimum Structure, Maximum Life (Good Ground Press).
Now retired, Barb and her husband, Rusty, live on Pine Island. Besides spending lots of time at House of Prayer Retreat Center, she creates pottery and continues with various writing projects.
Katharine O’Connor of Cape Coral, Florida has recently joined the Board of Directors at the House of Prayer in Alva, Florida. Katharine attended Florida Gulf Coast University and received her bachelor’s degree in Communication, followed by attending Monmouth University for her Master’s in Communication with a certification in Public Service. Katharine is currently enrolled in the PhD for Leadership and Change Program at Antioch University. Katharine is passionate about spirituality, social justice, and civic engagement as leadership development. Katharine is currently employed at Florida Gulf Coast University where she is a Coordinator for the Office of Service-Learning and Civic Engagement and an instructor within the College of Arts and Sciences. Katharine brings a wealth of knowledge regarding communication to the House of Prayer as well as a proven record of community engagement.