Monica is best known as the host of the Christian Television Network’s daily television program, “Bridges.” Broadcast weekly in over 50 million homes across the U.S., “Bridges” has been on the air for more than 20 years. A talk show designed to showcase the hearts, struggles, and triumphs of Christians living everyday life, “Bridges” is a project that represents Monica’s childhood dreams of using television to make a difference in the world.
As a young girl, growing up in Detroit, Michigan, Monica regularly daydreamed about being on TV, but it was in high school when that vision began to take shape. In Monica’s senior year of college, she began to sense that television was not just a “desire,” but a part of God’s plan for her life.
“When I first considered studying television in college, I thought that God wanted me to be a news anchor,” Monica says. “It was not until I graduated from college that I realized Christian television was God’s plan for me.”
After graduating from college, Monica thought she would become a television news anchor. As Monica started to make those preparations, she sensed that God was telling her to go another direction. Monica obeyed and ended up letting the idea of television go completely. Buoyed by the support of her husband, Joe, Monica began looking for other opportunities that would fit with God’s will for her life.
A HEART TO SERVE
Monica’s first real job out of college was at the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries. Although Monica knew accepting that job would look odd to many people, she decided to ignore those comments and concerns. Instead, she began heading up the Rescue Mission volunteer recruitment program and writing copy for their radio ads.
“Working at the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries was a rewarding job,” Monica remembers. “I recruited volunteers from churches to serve in the Mission’s medical and dental clinics and to serve as prayer volunteers in the chapel. Writing the radio ads and doing voice-overs for the Mission was the ‘icing on the cake’ part of the job.”
RISING TO THE CHALLEGE
After a year at the Rescue Mission, the organization decided to launch a telethon. Remembering that Monica’s background was in television, Monica’s boss asked her to produce the telethon. Monica excitedly agreed.
“I had no idea how to produce a telethon,” Monica admits now. “But I knew God would help me do it.”
In one of the planning meetings for the telethon, Monica met the president of the local Christian television station in Detroit. After those telethon planning meetings, the president of the Christian television station offered Monica a full-time position.
After a lot of prayers, Monica accepted the position, but only after she completed the telethon assignment with the Detroit Rescue Mission. The Mission’s telethon was a tremendous success, and Monica’s boss at the Rescue Mission was very understanding and supportive of her job offer in Christian television.
“I loved my early years in Christian television,” Monica says. “I did on-air work, produced shows, and answered the phones. It was God’s training ground for my work in Christian television.”
A HEART FOR THE BROADCAST
After pushing pause on her ministry to be a stay-at-home mom after the birth of son, Joe, Monica felt God calling her back to Christian broadcasting. These days, you’ll find Monica serving as station manager at WHTN, Nashville’s Christian Television Network. Monica's son works alongside the ministry, overseeing the IT department at the station.
“I have served WHTN as a volunteer, camera operator, traffic manager, program host, and station manager,” Monica says. “I’ve worked 19 years at WHTN, and it is one of the biggest blessings of my life and career.”
Monica feels strongly that Christian media is even more important now than when she first sensed God’s call.
“The world is a dark place, and things are changing rapidly,” she says. “All people need the hope and truth that Christian television provides. We get calls and emails every single day from people whose lives are changed through Christian television.”
As WHTN’s station manager, Monica oversees all aspects of WHTN. It’s a responsibility she takes seriously and one that requires she relies entirely on the Lord.
I speak God’s Word with boldness because of His unconditional love for all people. He is good, and He desires that all people come to salvation through His Son Christ. I don’t let ministry or life get more complicated than that.”
Monica’s latest book, “Messy to Meaningful,” co-written by comedic mother-daughter duo Rhonda and Kaley Rhea, is to be released spring 2018 by Bold Vision Books.