Jody Thomae | Ashland, OH
200 RYT, R-YFT, YF-A, TSYF, SilverSneakers, YF-D
Congratulations Ambassador of the Year 2018-2019!
Director and Ambassador Jody Thomae is an author, worship leader, and teacher of embodied prayer and creative worship. She has been involved in worship arts ministries since 1997 and is the author of “God’s Creative Gift” and the forthcoming book, “The Creator’s Healing Power.”
Her passion is for the revelation of God to be made real through the prophetic and creative portrayal of the message of Christ’s unfailing love, in order to help sustain the hearts of the broken and weary. She is particularly interested in how God uses creativity and embodied movement (including yoga) in the formative and healing process. She is a graduate of Ashland Theological Seminary.
She has taught yoga for over 15 years and leads a gently challenging Vinyasa flow (or slow, energizing flow) yoga class that is ROOTED (grounded in form, alignment, intention) and REACHING (stretching towards personal goals, dreams, destiny). She is a Registered YogaFaith Trainer (R-YFT), a E-RYT with Yoga Alliance, a YogaFaith Ambassador, (YF-A), and a certified Silver Sneakers Yoga Instructor.
Monette Benjamin-George | London, Ontario Canada
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A, YF-D
Director and Ambassador Monette Benjamin’s yoga experience began as a way to have a study break and get some exercise, but as she continued to attend classes, she realized that the time on her mat was very meaningful; it became a great time to connect with God.
“I began to notice that so many principles of yoga reflect God and his desire for us to be whole in body, soul and spirit. Thus began my search for Christian Yoga, and I am so elated to be a part of the YogaFaith family!”
I believe this journey of connecting my Christian faith with yoga, is a piece of the puzzle of life, for which I have been searching for some time.
I have spent a number of years in YWAM (Youth With a Mission) serving in various capacities in missions. Currently, I work full time as an Addiction Counselor at a long term residential treatment center for alcohol and drugs. I also teach yoga classes at a local yoga studio. These two positions remind me daily that: life is sometimes so beautiful, and life is sometimes so brutal! Living with the tension of these realities, I desire to live being grateful for all that God has given me.
I am so thankful to be able to share this gift of YogaFaith; it is a precious treasure to share Jesus through the practice of yoga!
YogaFaith is truly honored to share the ability of spreading God’s light alongside this beautiful soul!
Abbie Hanson, Plainwell, MI
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
I grew up as a dancer although the overly-critical dance world made me seek out alternatives. I took my first yoga class at a local gym and instantly felt connected. I realized Yoga was about how you feel and not how you look. While living in Los Angeles in 2007 I went through a 200-hour Vinyasa Yoga Teacher Training and studied with various yoga teachers. I loved the practice of yoga and felt the presence of God many times. God was doing a major work in me that year as I was in my first year of sobriety. I was either at a yoga studio, church or AA.
In May of 2017 I completed my 200hr certification with Yoga Faith and am excited to be shining the light of Christ through Yoga Faith Ambassadorship. Yoga Faith is a gift and a way of God pulling all of my life’s experiences together walking out the good works he has placed before me. I had finally found my tribe! I will never despise my small beginnings of teaching donation based classes with little to no students to now owning my own yoga studio in Plainwell, MI.
My passion is people finding freedom in Christ to break chains of addiction, identify and move though anything that is preventing purpose and promise.
I am also a single mama raising a little warrior princess. Other joys include Acro yoga & kids yoga!
Amy Kuscsik, Perrysville, OH
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
CONGRATULATIONS 2018-2019 AMBASSADOR HONORABLE MENTION!
Amy resides just outside of Perrysville, OH with her husband and three children. Yoga has been in and our of her life for nearly 20 years. In 2010, the Lord had other plans for her and brought yoga to the forefront of Amy’s life and that is when she began to embrace it as a form of personal worship. When she found YogaFaith, Amy knew this ministry was a divine match to her hearts longing to be an ambassador for Christ to people in need of healing. In 2017, she completed her teacher training with YogaFaith (R-YFT) and is also a certified restorative yoga instructor(R-R). These faithful steps are leading her to others to find wholeness and oneness with Christ.
Since 2012 she has taught primarily yoga in communities that are enveloped in the Mohican State Park in Loudonville, Ohio. Her practice has evolved into one that focuses on healing the body and spirit though body work, primarily though a gently flow and restorative practice, and soon trauma informed yoga to compliment talk therapy. These modalities have forever shaped her testimony and personal ministry to help others get on a path of natural healing the way Christ intended.
Amy is also a YogaFaith Ambassador (YF-A), embodying Christ’s vision for this ministry and taking Jesus out into the world so others can find restoration in mind, body, spirit and soul.
Victoria Grace Nolen | Hiawassee, GA
RYT, R-TSYF, YF-A
Victoria’s love for teaching yoga stems from the joy of creating a safe, sacred, and relaxing space where people of all ages and backgrounds can come to move, breathe, connect, and belong. Along with yoga, she finds great delight in dancing, daffodils, the magic of fall, and gatherings of loved ones around coffee or a campfire.
Victoria currently teaches in Clarkesville, GA and lives in the mountain foothills of Toccoa, GA with her husband.
Barbara Campbell | Calgary, Alberta Canada
R-YFT, RYT, YF Meditation and Nidra Certified
I originally found my mat in the hot rooms of a Yoga studio at the invite of my Step Daughter. It was a means to heal and mend a tattered and fragile relationship. Immediately the sweat and the movement became embedded and I continued my quest for yoga as a physical workout by venturing into the rooms of a Bikram Studio. Feeling incredibly “accomplished” as a yogi having done 90 minutes, 90 times in 90 days, my body began to fail me. My relationships began to fail. Bankruptcy seemed inevitable. I was so very angry with my life and those in it. Life was unraveling quickly as my food addiction grew stronger.
Through my 12 step journey I was reunited with Jesus, my Saviour, my King. As my relationship with Christ grew, I felt more and more disconnected from the yoga rooms that beckoned a relationship with some form of new age belief system that gave me a sense of unease and so I began to practice yoga at home. Several years later, my youngest daughter suggested yoga in the “cutest little studio Mom, I think you will like it”. It was there that I had a profound encounter with God. It was indescribable and as I continued to flow and humble myself and not seek yoga as a work out but as a form of worship I felt called to seek a Christian yoga community. I actually did not believe such a yoga school existed but as the saying goes, “when the student is ready, the teacher appears”, I googled Christian Yoga and voila….YogaFaith appeared.
I believe that yoga can unify individuals, heal relationships and strengthen communities as people learn to worship and glorify God through their physical practice, their contemplative prayer and humble themselves. It is a privilege to work with an organization that puts God first in everything that is done.
Love my country, our continent, our world.
With Purpose, On Purpose and For a Purpose.
Fran Pritchard, San Diego, CA
R-YFT, RYT, R-YF Meditation and Nidra Trainer
Certified DoTerra Specialist
As of 2017 I am R-YFT200 and look forward to adding more Yogafaith certifications to my tool belt. I will be taking the Christian Meditation Guided Nidra Certification | Feb.4, 2018 I am also a Certified Aromatouch Technician with doTERRA Essential Oils. I love incorporating essential oils as well as other mediums such as art and journaling into my Yogafaith classes. I am available for individual or group sessions as well as retreats. I mainly teach Gentle Yoga while instructing for options of more challenging poses.
Suzanne Penn | Westminster, MD
R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
Suzanne has over 500 hours of Christian Yoga Training. She holds certificates in Yoga with weights, Chair/senior yoga, Yoga Touch, Yogalates, and Yin. She is also a Revelation Wellness Instructor, a facilitator for ‘The Wellness Revelation’ Wellness Program, and Trigger Point trained. Suzanne is a retired Registered Nurse Supervisor, whose specialty was Psychiatric Nursing.
Suzanne is legally blind, and wants her story to inspire and encourage others to never give up, while glorifying God always!
Suzanne has a heart for Outreach/Local Mission work , and ministering to women. Her desire is to encourage, inspire, and uplift adult women; helping them see their true identity and worth in Christ, and their God given purpose. Suzanne sees Christ Focused yoga as a tool to radiate God’s light and expand the Kingdom!
YogaFaith is honored to have such a radiant light as part of our ministry!
Sally Mcateer | YogaFaith Ambassador Monroe, NC
R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
YogaFaith is honored to have such a beautiful soul as part of our family!
Shauna Dragomir, Central Coast, CA
200 R-YFT, RYT, R-CYAT, R-YF12S, R-YFA
Shauna is a yoga instructor, YogaFaith 12-Step instructor, and YogaFaith Adaptive instructor (April 2019). Yoga had been taboo for Shauna growing up in a conservative Christian family. In 2016, the Lord had other plans for her and brought yoga to the forefront of her life where she embraced it as a form of spiritual comfort and a means to correct the physical and emotional havoc that 25 years in the corporate world had wreaked on her body and spirit. After a period of questioning whether she belonged in the yoga community, she found YogaFaith. In 2018, she completed her 200-hour teacher training with YogaFaith (R-YFT), is registered with Yoga Alliance (RYT 200) and the Christian Yoga Association (R-CYAT).
Shauna’s passion is to create sacred space of compassion, joy, peace, and wellness where everyone’s unique yoga journey is validated and free from judgment, to strengthen the whole person in body, mind, spirit, and soul. She holds a special place in her heart for the messy, as YogaFaith has strengthened and brought clarity to her own personal testimony and confirmed her mission to offer an avenue of hope and healing to those in need. God uses our hot messes for amazing purposes!
Shauna resides in the Central Coast of California with her husband and daughter, where she primarily teaches Adaptive Yoga for fuller bodies, Beginners Yoga, Gentle Yoga, Restorative Yoga, all aimed to create accessible and equitable space for students to build unshakable confidence and learn to live their truths in their God-given bodies without shame or apology.
We cannot wait for you to be blessed by Shauna at our San Diego, Summer of 2019 Teacher Training! If you have the opportunity to visit her breathtaking and beautiful studio, please do! See HERE
Stacy LeBrun, Edmonds, WA
200 R-YFT, RYT
Stacy lives her life rooted in love. Yoga has played an impactful role in expanding her worship time not only physically but mentally as well. She has found that meditating on the Word combined with movement has deepened her journey with Christ. From Meditation and Nidra, gentle movements in a restorative practice, creating space in Yin, gaining flexibility in Vinyasa to feeling powerful in heat, yoga rounds out so many aspects of our everyday lives and seasons of change.
With all gratitude to our merciful Father, Stacy feels blessed to share her love of yoga and its benefits with her students as they journey with Christ.
Jaclyn Fontaine, YogaFaith Ambassador | Massachusetts
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
Starting her fitness and wellness career in college, Jackie has over 15 years experience personal training, managing, and teaching group exercise. Holding numerous academic and fitness related degrees and certifications, she has been a certified yoga instructor since 2007.
Jackie began practicing yoga at a young age to keep her body and mind healthy. Recently, Jackie was looking to deepen her knowledge as a qualified yoga teacher, and went on to complete her 200 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with YogaFaith. Having a past in gymnastics, and fitness competitions, Jackie gets most excited about inversions, arm balances, and acro yoga.
It was a defining moment when Jackie realized she could combine her love, education, and purpose for teaching with her love for Jesus and spreading the Good News. It is her ministry to bring yoga and its endless health benefits to others.
Jackie is married to the most amazingly supportive man and has two beautiful daughters who love the Lord. She relaxes by spending time with her kids, taking walks with her husband (and their dog, Siren), reading, and enjoys coaching her daughters youth soccer teams.
-Master of Science in Kinesiology- University of Rhode Island
-Bachelor of Science in Health Education, minor in Nutrition- University of Massachusetts Lowell
-YogaFaith R-YFT, RYT
-American College of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer
-Les Mills Advanced Body Pump instructor, Les Mills RPM instructor, Les Mills GRIT
-Les Mills Born To Move trained
Come learn from this beautiful soul at our Chicago Teacher Training in May of 2019.
Kim Reinman, Tucson, AZ
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF12SR
Kim found yoga in her recovery journey in 2014. As she worked through a Christ Centered 12 step program at a local church she began the healing of her physical body in hot yoga. There she kept hearing from God that “He has plans to give her a hope and a future”, Jer 29:11. Finding a new habit of meditation, yoga and connection was life changing. Kim found the YogaFaith 12 Step and recovery training and dove in! This big step in faith led Kim to complete her 200 hour yoga teacher training with YogaFaith in Spring of 2018. Since then she has taught at her church, recovery centers, assisted in YF12S trainings, taught in yoga studios, high schools, fitness centers/gyms, parks and even at music festivals.
Carla Speer YogaFaith Ambassador | Mukilteo, WA
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
Carla began practicing yoga in 2010, checking out yoga DVDs from the library. At first, strong flows were what attracted her to the practice. Six years ago, she began a journey of living with a chronic illness. At that point, slow flows, yin, and restorative became daily tools to alleviate the pain in her body. That daily practice time became sacred; a time to worship, a time to experience the healing power of yoga, a time to be with the Lord. She recently graduated from YogaFaith’s Fall 2018 Teacher Training and now leads various styles of yoga classes in her community.
Carla’s personal practice is focused on uniting with God and moving with gratitude and devotion. Carla loves the playfulness of yoga, the beauty of the movement and the room to explore that yoga provides. She believes that yoga is for every body and is an advocate of modifications and prop use to help each individual truly enjoy and benefit from their practice. Yoga has been such a gift to Carla, and she wishes to pass on that gift to each person that comes to her classes.
Carla lives in Mukilteo, WA with her husband and two children. Passionate about discipleship, Carla and her husband have served at their church for the past 20 years. They love to lead life groups where people can connect with others, connect with God and grow into disciplining others.
We look forward to you being blessed by this extraordinary being!
Elizabeth Mixon Williams YogaFaith Ambassador | Wilmington, NC
200 R-YFT, RYT, YF-A
Elizabeth has always had a passion for yoga and enjoyed its additional benefits but it wasn’t until she began to incorporated it into her personal quiet time did her passion for yoga really take off. She immediately felt the need to share that passion and help others deepen their relationship with Christ through yoga.
Currently, Elizabeth is the program director for Christian Recovery Houses, a ministry that provides transitional housing for those that are struggling with substance use disorder. She has been able to bring YogaFaith to the residents of that program and has received tremendous response. She is a certified yoga instructor (R-YFT) and is also trained in 12 step recovery (R-YF12S).
Elizabeth lives in Wilmington, North Carolina with her husband and two children.
Yogafaith is extremely honored and proud to have Elizabeth a part of the YogaFaith ministry and family.