Recognizing the dire need for Catholic campus outreach, and inspired by Pope John Paul II’s call to a “new evangelization”, Curtis Martin and his wife, Michaelann, founded FOCUS – the Fellowship of Catholic University Students – in 1998 at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas.
Later that year, Curtis had the rare opportunity to meet Pope John Paul II and express to him the hope and vision he had for FOCUS. The Pope listened carefully and simply told Curtis, “Be soldiers.” Since then, FOCUS has forged ahead in the battlefield of the United States, impacting the faith lives of tens of thousands of college students through on-campus outreach and large-scale national conferences.
Seventeen years since its launch, FOCUS has grown from four missionaries serving one campus to over 450 missionaries serving more than 100 campuses in 37 states across the nation. Today, FOCUS continues to encourage young men and women to develop and invest in their relationships with Jesus and to go out and share the Good News, transforming the culture for Christ.