About Me ... Family & Faith:
Picture your typical New Jersey Italian family… loud, crazy, with an endless supply of love & lasagna. Born and raised in Bayonne, NJ, I grew up in a multigenerational household surrounded (and protected) by my immediate and extended family members. We were Catholic by tradition. I grew up going to CCD, made my sacraments, but after my confirmation, I found myself growing distant from the church, and my faith.
From a very early age, I was involved in music and have always known it was something I needed in my life. Growing up, I sang mostly pop music but went on to study Jazz Performance at William Paterson University of NJ. During that time, I made many friends who happened to be church musicians. They were passionate about their faith and using their musical skills to express it. Because of my religious experiences many years earlier and the Holy Spirit calling me back, I began to feel a desire to be part of something like that. The idea came and went...
...until Christmas of 2015.
In the holiday spirit, I recorded and posted a short cover video of myself singing “Silent Night” to Facebook for friends and family to enjoy. It’s incredibly fitting that this simple song about the night of our savior’s birth would give birth to me rediscovering my faith in ways that I never thought possible. Through a friend who shared my video, it attracted the attention of someone who would also change my life forever. Now my manager and songwriting partner, Fred Golz reached out to me several times with an invitation to sing at his church where he had just become the music director. After scheduling conflicts and cancelling several times, on Sunday, January 3rd, 2016 I found myself sitting in the choir section of St. Helen’s Church in Westfield, NJ singing for the 6:30pm service. Little did I know that this was the beginning of a beautiful journey that would affect my life in so many ways.
Putting it all together...
As I became more involved in the music ministry, St. Helen’s slowly became my home away from home. It became a place where I could share my gift of music, comfort people, and lead them to the Lord. It was what the Holy Spirit was calling me to do for so long.
Within weeks of becoming involved in St. Helen’s music ministry and listening to the weekly messages, melodies and lyrics started flooding into my head. I had written songs in the past, but never with the confidence, conviction and ease as when I began to write songs of faith. These songs started to pour out of me- Songs of praise, worship, trust, and love. I felt the Lord so clearly saying, “Do as I say, write them, and share them, people need to hear this.”
Through relationships I've built with the people at St. Helen’s, the encouragement of my small group, and the amazing leadership of Fr. Michael, I've discovered what it truly means to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ,- something that ironically was not emphasized in my traditional Catholic religious education. Each week at St. Helen’s, I am challenged to go deeper in my spiritual journey, to become more strongly connected to Christ, and to be open to His plans for my life. This has had a profound impact on not only the way I live, but the way I pray, sing, and think about music.
I know the feeling of being lost. I know the feeling of being at a distance, or even at war with your faith. I also know the feeling of coming home and allowing the Spirit to change things in your life. If at the end of each day, I can say that I’ve helped even one person feel the incredible reconciliation and rebirth in Christ that I’ve felt, I will know that I’ve fulfilled my purpose. Let’s build His kingdom together.
Where are your donations going? Here is a quick breakout of what we expect for project expenses:
Every dollar you can give to the project before (and after) we have reached our initial goal means the world to us.
All money raised donated via Go Fund Me will go directly into my album! Thank you for your prayers and support!!
- Denise Scalvino
- Leslie Keeney
- Martin DeBenedetto
- Katherine Dulan
- Peter & Silvia Mosca
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