Matthew Leonard is an international speaker, author, podcaster, and founder of Next Level Catholic Academy, an online membership community focused on teaching Catholic spirituality. An accomplished filmmaker, he has written, produced, directed, and hosted multiple best-selling Catholic video series such as the Bible and the Virgin Mary and Genesis to Jesus, which have been translated into almost a dozen languages.
A convert to Catholicism and former missionary to Latin America, Matthew is a frequent guest on radio and television programs across the country. His podcast “The Art of Catholic”, is heard in more than 170 countries around the world. Matthew holds a Masters in Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville and is the author of two books, Louder Than Words: The Art of Living as a Catholic and Prayer Works! Getting A Grip On Catholic Spirituality.He lives in Ohio with his wife Veronica and their six children.
“We all need help to grow spiritually...Matt Leonard shows us the way.” -Scott Hahn, Best selling author, speaker, & professor of Theology
"I'm not exaggerating. Not since Fulton Sheen have I heard a speaker so effective at motivating ordinary Catholics to step up their prayer lives and take their faith more seriously." - Mike Aquilina, EWTN Personality & author of more than 30 books
"When Matt Leonard talks, I'm all ears because he's all heart. If there's one thing I know it's rock 'n roll, and this guy knows how to rock a bunch of Catholics. His words change hearts." - Dion Dimucci, Rock-n-Roll Hall of Famer
Below are a list of Matthew's most requested keynote presentations, which can be combined when multiple talks are requested. Matthew is also available to craft custom presentations upon request.
Pray Like a Saint: Wisdom for Growing Closer to God
According to Scripture, every one of us is called to “be perfect” and to “pray without ceasing.” Prayer is the path to God and we’ve been doing it all our lives. But are we really praying? Are we really progressing toward holiness, perfection, and a deep relationship with God? In this talk we’ll define and discuss the three traditional stages of prayer as taught by spiritual greats like St. John of the Cross, St. Teresa of Avila, and St. Francis de Sales. We won’t just talk theory, but lay out the practical steps to achieve union with God through deep prayer even in the midst of this busy, distracting world. Because if you’re not praying, you’re not living.
No Regrets: The Art of Living as a Catholic
"If only I'd done this!" "If only I'd done that!" These are not statements we want to make at the end of our lives, especially when we face our Maker. But in a world that presents us with an almost infinite number of options, what are the things that make up a "Catholic" life? What makes us different? How are we supposed to live? This talk provides the answers. While our paths can certainly go in any number of directions, God provides foundations upon which we can build and enjoy a full, purposeful, adventurous life that is both satisfying now and prepares us for eternity. There's no reason to settle for less and every reason to perfect our "art of living".
Divine Destiny: Your Place in the Family of God
Scripture is chalk full of family imagery. God is our Father. Jesus is his Son. Mary is his Mother. To really understand what the Bible is all about and how we are supposed to live, we have to understand the origin and essence of the family. This talk focuses on the Fatherhood of God and shows how from the beginning of time He has been stooping down to the level of his children so as to raise us up to his. And his level is way beyond what you've probably heard. Discover your divine destiny!
Fighting for Glory: The 3 Stages of the Spiritual Life
Many spiritual writers refer to the “science of sainthood”. It’s the defined process by which we achieve union with God, our ultimate destiny - a mode of life beyond what you can imagine. This talk explains the three traditional stages of the Catholic spiritual life as discussed by spiritual greats like Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Thomas Aquinas, and so many others. We’ll also reveal how to achieve a life of true peace and happiness in the craziness of this world as move through the stages of our spiritual journey. This is what life is all about...now and forever.
What's Love Got To Do With It?
This talk focuses on the new idea of love proclaimed by Christ and how it relates to, and gives meaning to human suffering, penance, and ultimately, death. Sounds a bit dark, doesn't it? But it's not! By looking at these issues we'll discover the secret to how we can "rejoice in the Lord always" just like St. Paul, no matter what happens. After all, there is absolutely no reason Catholics shouldn't be the most joyful people on earth.
Our Beautiful End: Exploring the Timeless Mystery of Heaven
It doesn't do any good to tell people they must die to themselves to be good Catholics if we don't also tell them what they're dying for, namely, a heaven that is beyond our wildest imaginations. True, Scripture tells us straight up that we can't know, or even imagine the depth of the joy and pleasure of eternity spent with God. That being said, divine revelation and human experience do provide us with some clues that can help motivate us to achieve the Beatific Vision. We'll discuss the nature and role of beauty in this life, particularly how it sheds light on the nature of God and assists us in achieving our glorious, beautiful end.
Why the Cross: How the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Actually Saves You
Have you ever wondered why it is that Jesus died on the Cross? Why did the Second Person of the Trinity become man to suffer, die, and rise again? How does that actually get us to heaven? We’ll examine how it is that the sacrifice of Christ actually saves us, and investigate the true meaning of sacrifice...including all those seemingly strange animal sacrifices we read about in the Old Testament.