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Cottage Grove prayer breakfast speaker recounts personal journey

Steve Tourek, a Woodbury resident and Marvin Windows executive, speaks during the Cottage Grove Area Prayer Breakfast Nov. 14 at Mississippi Dunes Golf Course. (Bulletin photo by Scott Wente)

For the first several decades of his life, Steve Tourek said, he racked up successes, post-graduate degrees, high-profile achievements and lucrative work.

A champion college rower and quick-rising attorney, Tourek said he won awards, races and cases.

But as he approached age 50, his professional “upward trajectory” was unsustainable and, as aspects of his personal life unraveled, he realized he had pursued so much but lacked purpose. It was “motion without meaning,” he said.

That revelation came after a brief encounter with a stranger in an elevator, Tourek recalled during his speech Nov. 14 at the Cottage Grove Area Prayer Breakfast.

Tourek said the woman riding an elevator with him told him Jesus loves him, a simple message that jolted him.

“I was struck dumb,” he said.

The exchange, Tourek said, was the start of a roughly 15-year journey in which he rediscovered his faith and reprioritized his life.

Now a Marvin Windows corporate executive, Tourek, of Woodbury, also teaches law at the University of St. Thomas Law School and mentors law students about living with purpose.

“I see now that God is far more concerned with the person he’s making me than anywhere he’s taking me,” Tourek said.

The prayer breakfast, patterned after the annual National Prayer Breakfast, drew about 150 people to Mississippi Dunes Golf Course. This year’s event, the eighth in Cottage Grove, was led by Michael and Paula Bushilla, owners of Hope Glen Farm.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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