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Strengthening Your Body and Faith With the Founders of SoulCore

Some people focus on physical fitness during Lent, and Father Dave welcomes back Colleen Scariano and Deanne Miller, the founders of SoulCore, to discuss integrating soul and body in our Catholic faith. SoulCore began in 2012 as a Catholic fitness apostolate that combines the prayers of the Rosary with core strengthening, stretching, and other functional movements.

Brett Siddell rests after a SoulCore class in 2013

The group recalls the first time Colleen and Deanne joined the show in 2013, and remembers a funny picture of Brett looking exhausted following his first SoulCore class. Colleen jokes, “There’s a balance between effort and surrender, and [Brett] stayed in that surrender.”

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For new listeners, Colleen explains what a SoulCore class is all about. “It really tries to engage the whole person in a sacred experience of the Rosary,” she says. “This balance of effort and surrender also helps us reflect more deeply on the mysteries and the virtues of the Rosary.”

Deanne explains how part of SoulCore’s goal is to help people be “a fit instrument to do the will of God, and the instrument is going to look different for everybody. That doesn’t mean being able to do 50 pushups and 20 squats. We might invite you into those movements, but it’s really about an interior strengthening and not anything for vanity’s sake.” Colleen adds, “To live out whatever your vocation is to the fullest potential.” They note some specialized classes offered, including specific classes for pregnant and postpartum women.

Colleen and Deanne explain that the program is accessible for those of different skill levels and athletic abilities. “The movements can always be modified, whether it’s for a disability, a physical challenge, or whatever limitation that they might have,” Colleen says. “The prayer you’re always going to do; that will always be the primary heart of the mission. We can adjust the movements to whatever is needed.” 

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They reference a throwback Lent Homily from Father Dave where he notes how resisting temptation strengthens our faith like tearing and repairing muscles in exercise. “[The homily] felt very aligned with SoulCore because when you are strengthening your muscles, that experience takes us deeper into relationship with Christ,” Deanne says. “We come sinful, we come imperfect. Then we’re being perfected in Christ in that discipline of meditating on the mysteries, focusing on the virtues, and asking for the grace to grow in virtue; that’s where the repair happens.”

SoulCore recently launched a new website and app to share information about their virtual and in-person classes around the country. “Each month we’re adding new content [online], so that’s always changing and new things are coming…a lot of excitement,” Colleen says, “We’ve just been amazed by the growth, especially since 2013 when we were here with you all. It’s such a journey of joy and honestly healing, not only [from] what we found being transformed through the Rosary and through SoulCore, but [also from] all of the leaders and those participating. The testimonies and feedback have really been such an incredible part of this whole mission.”