Karol Meynard was born and raised in Lafayette, LA by loving parents whose values included God, Catholic faith and morals, family, and community service. She attended twelve years of Catholic education at Mount Carmel Academy; obtained a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Southwestern Louisiana; and earned a Masters in Pastoral Studies from Loyola University of New Orleans. She is a Secular Discalced Carmelite, a Master Catechist, and a Certified Director of Religious Education. For the past twenty three years, Karol has been employed by the Diocese of Lafayette, Louisiana; the first ten years as Court Instructor for the Office of the Tribunal and the past thirteen years as Director of the Office of Pro Life Apostolate. Karol is the widow of Deacon Leonard Meynard and together they have 7 married children and 15 grandchildren.
After attending the Women of Grace Conference on October 15, 2011 at the Lafayette Cajun Conference Center, Karol knew in the depths of her heart that it was just a matter of time before the Holy Spirit would bring Women of Grace to the women of Acadiana. For three years she absorbed the Women of Grace message, mission, and vision as she prayed, trusted, and listened to Johnnette’s 2011 conference tapes, until January 2014 when a flyer appeared at the diocesan bulletin board announcing a “Women of Grace Facilitator Training” to be held at Our Lady of Fatima Church.
After attending the Women of Grace Facilitator Training, where she met Regional Coordinator, Brenda Dooley, she participated in the first Women of Grace Study in Lafayette in February of 2014. She also met with her pastor, Fr. Mark Le Doux for approval to offer the Full of Grace: Women and the Abundant Life Foundational Series to the women of St. Peter Roman Catholic Church in Carencro, Louisiana. Fr. Le Doux said this was “answer to prayer” and has supported this endeavor from the onset through promoting the registration process, altar talks, parish bulletin inserts, and Women of Grace announcements on Christ the King KLFT 90.5 FM Catholic Radio for Acadiana.
As a result, Karol is currently facilitating two (morning and evening) study groups with 80 women participating in the 18 week program from September 2014 through May 2015.
Following the guidance of the Holy Spirit and direction of Regional Coordinator, Brenda Dooley, Karol then submitted a request to Bishop Michael Jarrell to offer the Full of Grace: Women and the Abundant Life Foundational Study Series to the women of the Diocese of Lafayette. With Bishop Jarrell’s approval, Karol presented Women of Grace to the diocesan Pro Life Coordinators at the Respect Life Workshop on Sept. 13th, 2014. Brenda Dooley, Regional Coordinator, gave a 30 minute presentation about Women of Grace for this pro life event.
Also, to jump start Women of Grace across the diocese, Bishop Jarrell gave his approval for the Office of Pro Life Apostolate to offer “Facilitator Training” workshops to diocesan parish representatives and pro life coordinators for one year. Afterwards, the Women of Grace progress will be assessed to determine the effects of the Women of Grace “movement” at the parish and home study levels. While the Office of Pro Life Apostolate promotes and supports “Women of Grace” and its mission and purpose, it doesn’t want individual Church Parishes to feel like they are in competition with any program sponsored at the diocesan level..
As Director of the Office of Pro Life Apostolate, Karol asserts that her role is twofold: (1) to “assist” by training the pro life coordinators and/or parish representatives, who would actually facilitate the Women of Grace Foundational Study in their respective parishes; and (2) to “promote” awareness of Women of Grace’s mission and purpose.
Karol’s says, “I am so grateful to have Bishop Michael Jarrell‘s blessing and I look forward to carrying out the Women of Grace mission of healing hearts, changing lives, and saving souls in an effort to renew the culture of life. Thanks to our Blessed Mother and all 16 women saints featured in the Women of Grace study. Of all the things I’ve ever done, Women of Grace is the best, the greatest and most effective means of empowering women to embrace their authentic femininity, for such a time as this — in their endeavor to aid humanity from falling.”