RIP Joel Stigale: Youth Ministry Legend

Well done, good and faithful servant!

It was an honor to work with Joel for so many years with Miami Youth For Christ and to have the privilege of supporting his ministry. Joel was a Legend, He was Jesus in the flesh to so many.

The following is a social-media snapshot of what others are saying.

Mike Liebler: President of The Youth Culture Report

Joel David Stigale, born November 6, 1974, was called home and received ULTIMATE HEALING at 8:56pm on the Lords’ Day, Sunday, August 14th. He was surrounded by his family & friends and went into the arms of Christ peacefully as the warm afternoon sunlight streamed into his hospital room window. It truly was beautiful and God’s presence was felt powerfully.

Today is 9 months 1 day since Joel’s lung transplant and I feel like he was reborn in heaven today with a perfect body that will never get sick & will never die again.

It’s hard to find adequate words to express my gratitude to you all for being on this journey with us. Vivian Stigale

My heart is in anguish over the loss of my friend, Joel, but I mourn with hope for beyond what I see & feel. Joel did gang ministry back in the day & that led him to share that when it comes to trusting Christ… “It takes a minute to pray and a second to die.” Praying many kids… old & new… will take that minute to pray through the ripple effect of Joel’s life & physical death. Thank you for praying with me for him this last year. Now it’s time to#‎prayforCATALYST & his family.   April Lovins

My friend,my partner in ministry, Joel Stigale went home to be with his Savior! My heart is heavy for our loss. He has left behind a very special legacy and his impact on others is truly immeasurable! His life has influenced me, our Yfc family, and a whole culture of hip hop in south Florida for God’s glory! Joel was wise, a learner of life, hard working, a true servant of our most high God! He was honest, sometimes brutally honest. Lol he was an encourager. Joel’s presence on this earth will be missed. I thank God for the years I have known him. I remember the days when he would come to KIX and break dance and share the gospel! My favorite memory is when we were at camp and a fight broke out. I was trying to break it up and he grabbed me and pulled me out of the chaos and he yelled at me! “What are you doing? I got this!” And he pointed to my belly! ( I was 6 months pregnant). Joel was a complete gentleman, kind hearted and a lover of God and His word! My prayers are for God to comfort the 3 who loved him most -his wife Vivian Stigale, his daughter Havanna, and his mom Joanne! Please join me as we pray for them and celebrate his life on this earth! There are many Joel stories to be told! He was a unique and wonderful character! Stacy Hollister Morales

Don’t really know what to say, don’t really know how to say it. Under normal circumstances I could write and write about the impact Joel and Catalyst Hiphop had in the South Florida Hiphop Community over the last 15 years.

Joel Stigale: a friend, a brother, a mentor, a role model. For the last 15 years, every bboy/bgirl that has come out of South Florida has a direct connection to Joel. Joel provided us all with a place to call home. A safe haven for us to focus and develop our arts. Every out of state/country bboy/bgirl that visited South Florida looking for a “practice spot” visited Catalyst Hiphop.

When the idea of Outbreak Hiphop Festival came about the summer of 2003, it was Joel(along with the Catalyst staff) that donated the venue and their time 100% free of charge. Hundreds of events have taken place at Catalyst thanks to him. Thousands have been impacted by him. The South Florida Hiphop Community lost a legend. The world lost an amazing human being. LOVE YOU JOEL! Be at peace brotha.  (Website and Photo: )

Rest in peace Joel Stigale. You were such an inspiration to so many of us and blessed so many lives. I can’t believe you are gone. Del Portillo

Aside from all the jokes and quick comebacks, #‎jolestigale was a good hearted, and humbling man of God. I had the opportunity of seeing Joel, founder of @catalyst_hh, just before he was emitted back into the hospital, and got to see this side of him. I don’t know what kind of path I’d be on if Joel hadn’t followed his calling, and started Catalyst. I wonder where the majority of the scene in Miami would be? Because of this man of God, hip hop has had such a positive impact on people, but it was his love for Christ that brought the two together, #‎christfamilyhiphop. I’ll miss you man, but your name and your legacy will continue on. Peace brother!! See you on the other side Fresco Esco

I used to hang out at Catalyst in South Miami until 2 or 3am with Joel and the leaders there, just shoot the breeze, play Donkey Kong, talk about the Gospel and God. Because of this man, my life is forever changed. He impacted thousands of lives and I have the privilege to say I was able to know him for a while.

Joel Stigale, I will miss you, so much.

Thank you for your wisdom, leadership and friendship. Thank you for being obedient to the call of God in your life. Thank you, Vivian, for being a rock of faithfulness and trusting in the Lord in this last year. My deepest condolences and prayers for you and your family.

I’ll see you in heaven, Joel Monique Schmitt

The world loses another amazing person and super strong pillar in the hip hop and religious community, but his message was felt by many and he changed many peoples lives including my own. I will never forget all the countless hours spent talking about the world and beyond along with Joel helping guide me into either walking on the dark or light path in life in some of the hardest times in my youth. His conversations and advice made a direct impact on me to try and do my best and be a better person, and the reward of celebrating the light through break dancing and graffiti was always a key reminder that the journey was all more than worth it. I was fortunate enough to see Joel one last time at both the Catalyst Anniversary event and also right before his lung transplant. I believe strongly that he was other worldly and was indeed a special messenger sent from the heavens. He accomplished an amazing establishment in not one but 3 different places where the good in the world could reach out to the troubled youth through the 4 elements of true hip hop. I am super grateful that we crossed paths in life and will miss him and always love him like a brother in which he was. A special shout out goes to his wife Vivian Stigale for being by his side through thick and thin and for such a prolonged period of time; her strength and dedication is beyond measurable considering the circumstances and the whole situation is documented via her posts. Additional shout outs to Catalyst Hip Hop crew for holding down the fort and keeping things alive while Joel ventured on into his time of ascension. Nick A Lopes

Rest in Christ Joel…You will always be remembered in my family as the spiritual father I was blessed to have.. I remember this day Joel was running late for Catalyst Baptisms but he didn’t want to miss the chance to marry us so he rushed over and took his time with beautiful words and married us. Crystal Fuller

Cant believe this day came… You impacted so many lives including mine. You gave me a place to be myself. I had years of goodtimes and met some of the best people at catalyst. I met you 9 years ago sitting by myself watching the older writers in awe… U gave us a place to paint and kept the police and violence away from us that surrounds graffiti outside of catalyst. You were the first person that preached good that i could relate to.. The first preacher i met that didnt preach down to u rather conversate with u as an equal. A mentor. I had alot of late nights full of laughs with u. Even on ur hospital bed wen i went to see u u were full of conversation bout music and graff like nothing was wrong. Ive seen u diffuse many bad occasions including ones that involved me… After every piece i did you would walk down to the wall with me and critique what i did, but yet would praise my skill to any outsider that mentioned or met me. I couldnt do half of what you did in a lifetime 3 times as long as yours. Thank you for everything youve done!! Im going to mis you.

Breathe easy Joel.

Legends never die. Robbie Recta

Joel will definitely be missed. He was always kind and welcoming whenever we ran into each other. Could always see the love he had for people and how much he cared for the well being of others.

Could be months or even years that went by but whenever we crossed paths, it was like we had seen each other the day before. The love for Hip Hop and Christ connected us. Thankful for every conversation we had and every moment we shared.

As much as it hurts to know that he has passed on, I’m filled with joy knowing he is once again healthy and in a better place. No more suffering & no more pain. Prayers go out to his family & friends, his wife Vivian and his daughter.

His legacy will never be forgotten. Chris Perez

RIP to this guy. Such an amazing person. He gave everything he had to help others. He was like a brother to me. You will be missed Joel Stigale but I know your in heaven shinning down. Jeremy Moening

Our good friend Joel received eternal healing and went home to live in the place he was created for with Our Father in heaven. Great husband, father, son and brother in the Lord. He will be missed by many. Katie Wanless Jean-Rejouis

Sad day today, just heard that Joel passed away. I’m here in Cambodia now and can’t find word to describe how much you meant to us and all the love and admiration we have for you. Thank you for introducing me to Christ and changing our life’s forever. I will always remember introducing you to Cuban thanksgivings and noche buena at my house 18 years ago. Love you brother #‎RIPjoel Laz Mendez

You helped me through some really rough times and has always had my back and taught me a better way of life. For this I will never forget you.

Rest In Paradise Brother. Jay Franco

I just want to say Thank You. Thank you for opening the doors and letting me n my crew in. It was truly an honor knowing you. On behalf of all the Shorty Rockers we Thank you. Thank you for all the dope events @catalyst_hh and thank you for letting my crew SRc throw a dope event at catalyst. You will be miss but not forgotten your legacy will live on in the Hip Hop Community. Rest in Paradise Joel… Jose Just Calero

Dear Joel, I’m still in shock that you’re even gone.

My heart breaks for your sweet family: your wife, daughter, and Grace, as well as your extended Catalyst family – brothers and sisters, sons and daughters. I feel like your race was cut short, but I do strongly trust in the hope that you were met with your Master and Lord last night and that His words to you were, “Well done my good and faithful servant.” Amera Styles

I will miss you Joel. I do now, have always, and always will love and cherish you! You gave me the finest memories of my life! RIP my friend. We will see you again. Draconis Eridani

RIP Joel Stigale “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ Mat.25.21 Ana Gonzalez