RECongress Email Updates #10 Dec 16, 2013 (REC 2014-10)

RECongress 2014
March 13 (Youth Day) & March 14-16, 2014

2014 Theme
"Hope: A World Afire" / "Esperanza que Enciende al Mundo"

Youth Day Theme
"Never Alone, Forever Accepted"

 What is Congress?


 • ORE Announcement

 • YD Deadlines

 • YD T-Shirts

 • YD Speaker Feature

 • Congress Speakers

 • Registration

 • Speaker Update

 • Hotel Specials

 • Disney Ticket Offer

 • For So. Cal Only


 • Emailing

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Office of Religious Education - Archdiocese of Los Angeles

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   Register for RECongress 2014

Watch our new promotional video for the 2014 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress. Register online now, and choose from our 205 speakers presenting 310 workshops (216 in English, 61 in Spanish, 7 in Vietnamese and 26 presented on Youth Day). And the benefit of online registration is you can see if the workshop you want is available "real time" — you'll know right away which tickets you will receive!

Are you receiving this Congress Emailng in your inbox? Pass along this emailing or our link — archive.recongress.orgg — to receive the latest information about Congress 2014 and encourage your friends to sign up for our Congress Emailing for updates. If you do not care to receive future updates, you can find removal information at the bottom of this message.

¡Para información en español, clic aquí!

The Religious Education Congress, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Office of Religious Education, is the nation's largest annual gathering of Roman Catholics! Our last RECongress, held in March, brought together nearly 40,000 people during the four-day weekend! We had registrants from across the country and as far away as Ireland and Australia.

See 2013 Congress Statistics

The 2014 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress dates are:
March 13, 2014 (Youth Day)
March 14-16, 2014

Congress is held annually at the Anaheim Convention Center, located at 800 West Katella Ave. in Anaheim, Calif. (just south of Disneyland and Disney California Adventure). See a Yahoo Map

The registration fee for Youth Day 2014, March 13 is
$30 per person. The adult days have a separate registration and fee, which is $70 per person. Fees increase after the late registration date (postmarked after January 22, 2014). There is a $30 processing fee for refunds. There are NO REFUNDS AFTER JANUARY 22, 2014.

You can register for Congress by check (mailing in your registration) or online by credit card. And with
(both online and mailed) registrations, be sure to provide your email address. EVERYONE with an email will receive confirmation of registration along with your ticket assignments. Want to switch a session? Want to change a workshop to attend with a friend? No problem. Go online and make your changes. Changes can be made up until the time tickets are printed.

Register for Congress

Sr. Edith Prendergast, Director of the Office of Religious Education (ORE), has announced two new Associate Directors for the department. Paulette Smith (on left), Congress Event Coordinator, and Christina Lamas (on right) have both been named an Associate Director for the Office of Religious Education. In addition, Christina will be taking over Mike Norman's position of leading the Youth Ministry Team, working closely with Katie Zeigler and Heather MacDonald to direct the Youth Ministry efforts of our archdiocese. These two have served ORE for many years and bring much expertise and wisdom to their positions. Congratulations to both Christina and Paulette!

See the 2014 Youth Day page

JANUARY 3 - Youth Day Emcees
Friday, Jan. 3 is the deadline to apply to be a Youth Day MC to introduce the speakers and MC other parts of the day. Youth must be registered for Youth Day to attend the training, which will be held on January 11, 2014. For more information, download the form.

JANUARY 8 - Youth Day Choir & Instrumentalists
Wednesday, Jan. 8 is the deadline for all high school youth (grades 9-12) who would like to be part of the Youth Day liturgy by joining the Youth Day Choir or Band. Participants must also register for Youth Day through their parish or school. For information, please download the form.

FEBRUARY 14 - Youth Day Ault Volunteers
Friday, February 14 is the deadline for any adults who are NOT chaperone young people and would like to volunteer to help with Youth Day crowd control, room directing, bus unloading, and so much more. For further information, download the form.

ASAP - Youth Day Group Volunteers
We are looking for a parish or school ministry group to entertain those waiting in line for the Arena, for both the morning and afternoon sessions. There would be some meetings required for the coordinator prior to Youth Day. For more details, please contact Christina Lamas at

See the 2014 Youth Day page

Official Youth Day T-shirts are available for custom and group pre-orders. Customize your Youth Day shirt with your youth group or parish name on the back for only $2.50 additional. Custom orders with payment must be received by February 17, 2014 for direct shipping.

The special pre-order discount pricing (valid thru February 24, 2014) is :
     T-shirts: $12.50 ($15 at Youth Day)
     Sweatshirts: $25 ($30, limited quantity at Youth Day)
     Adult sizes: S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL

On Youth Day, merchandise will be available at the Seraph7 booth in the main lobby of the Convention Center Arena. Pre-order to ensure you get yours at  or email

See the Youth Day Schedule

Everyone gets to hear this workshop presented in the Arena for both Track 1 and Track 2 attendees.
Thomas Awiapo
Orphaned before the age of 10, Thomas Awiapo survived bleak poverty and hunger in his small village in Ghana, Africa. The loss of two younger siblings to malnutrition and his search for food at age 12 led him to school, where he eventually won scholarships to attend college. Today, he works for Catholic Relief Services as an international speaker and trainer for community leaders throughout Ghana, where he lives with his wife and four children.
ValLimar Jansen
ValLimar serves the Church as a composer, singer, storyteller, inspirational speaker and evangelizer. She received critical acclaim for her solo albums “You Gotta Move” and “Anointing,” winning UNITY Awards recognition in 2008 and 2010. She was Emcee for the 2011 National Catholic Youth Conference held in Indianapolis, and she performed with her husband, Frank, at the Loreto/Angora International Papal Event in Italy, which was broadcast on EWTN and across the world.

Thursday, March 13, 2014
Arena Session: "Disciples in Our Own Families"

Meet and listen to Thomas Awiapo, as he is joined by the dynamic presenter and singer ValLimar Jansen. Together, these two powerful speakers share their stories of survival and success: Thomas in Ghana, West Africa, and ValLimar in the United States. Through their presence and their personal stories of hunger and hope, Thomas and ValLimar bring to life God’s invitation to live as one human family. Through storytelling, reflection, prayer, music and movement, Thomas and Val­Limar inspire us to embrace the knowledge that we are truly “Never Alone and Forever Accepted!”

See the Youth Day Workshops

Fr. Bryan Massingale, a priest of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, is Professor of Moral Theology at Marquette University. A former President of the Catholic Theological Society of America and the Black Catholic Theological Symposium, he is a noted expert on Catholic social thought and a speaker on social justice issues. A former Congress keynote, he has addressed most major Catholic social justice conferences in the country and is a consultant to many faith-based leadership groups nationally and internationally.

Friday, March 14, 2014
10:00 - 11:30 am — Session 3-14
The Social Teaching of Pope Francis" (*)
Pope Francis has captivated those both within and outside of the Catholic Church with his sense of open engagement. For many, he represents a new beginning and thus has created a renewed interest in Catholicism. This session will explore Pope Francis’ teachings on social justice issues. We will discover how he is deeply rooted in the long history of prior Catholic social teaching, and consider the new emphases and challenges he offers to people of faith living in an unjust world.

, March 15, 2014
10:00 - 11:30 am — Session 4-18
How Religion Both Makes and Unmakes Racial Prejudice and Fear" (*)
It is a disturbing paradox that religious people of all faiths are among the most intolerant persons, and yet people of faith are also at the forefront of justice movements. This session explores how religion has been — and still is — used to justify injustice and exclusion, and how religious faith can also lead to a deeper commitment to human equality and justice for all.

See the Congress 2014 Speakers Page

With our new online registration system,
did you know that:
— You should choose all your workshops BEFORE you begin the online process, especially to avoid any timeout problems with your browser.
— You can register online using a Visa, Mastercard, American Express or Discover credit card.
— If you register online, you will immediately see if your workshop is available and know if you get your "first choice." If you mail in your registration, you will have to make first and second choices.
— You can register first and pay later (OR you can even pay first and choose your workshops later).
— Your email address is your key to registration. Sign on and review (or change) your workshops. All info how to do this comes to your email inbox.
— Even people who register by mail will receive an email confirmation of their registration, showing all their workshops. BE SURE to include your email address with your registration.
— You can make changes in your workshop selections at any time (UNTIL tickets are printed).

See Register online

As reported by the National Center for Evangelization Newsletter on Saturday, November 30: "It is with profound sadness, but also immense gratitude that we share with you that Fr. Pat Brennan has gone home to heaven to be with God. We will be forever grateful for the many gifts that he has shared with people around the country and other places in the world. Our deepest prayer is that as Fr. Pat rests gently in the loving embrace of God, he hears the words of his Master today: "Well done good and faithful servant. You were faithful in small matters, I will now give you great responsibilities. Come and share your Master's joy."

Fr. Brennan was to present two workshops at Congress. His scheduled sessions:
Session 1-02: The New Evangelization (*) will be presented by Fr. David Loftus
Session 5-06: Communio (*) will be presented by Bill Huebsch

Go to the Congress Speakers page

Don't forget to make your travel arrangements now for the 2014 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress. We have secured special rates for Congress attendees at a number of hotels with pricing to meet everyone's needs. Make sure when making your reservations you mention the Religious Education Congress so that you receive our special rate.

See the RECongress Hotels Page

Congress attendees are able to pre-order specially priced Disneyland Resort Tickets. Find specials on tickets to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, with special pricing on evening passes and on single- and multi-day passes for both Disneyland Resort parks. This offer is only available online, beginning Tuesday, January 7, 2014, at Tickets are valid March 7-18, 2014. See information and notes on our Updates page.

Go to our RECongress Channel on Youtube

Ralphs Grocery Company, a major supermarket chain in the Southern California area, supports schools, churches and other non-profit organizations with annual contributions. The Los Angeles Religious Education Congress is a member of Ralphs Community Contributions Program. Simply by using your Ralphs rewards Card a portion of eligible purchases are contributed to the RECongress. This is an annual program that must be renewed each year. The current term runs from September 1, 2013 through August 31, 2014!

If you were part of the program last year, we thank you, but everyone needs to re-enroll each year. We encourage all Ralphs shoppers to sign up for the free Ralphs rewards Card and register their card with the Community Contributions Program. It’s easy! Every time you shop for groceries and scan your card at Ralphs, RECongress will automatically earn up to 5% of all eligible purchases per enrolled card. Sign up now! It’s never been easier to contribute to the RECongress.

Organization Name: Archdiocese of Los Angeles - Religious Education
Organization Number:

Find step-by-step instructions and information online.

See the RECongress Ralphs page

You can find all Congress information and updates online. We have posted all the speakers and workshops, along with ways to find workshops by topic. Check our site for updates and announcements.

Be sure to sign-up for this twice-a-month Emailing about Congress updates and events. You may opt out from the Congress Emailing at any time from the link below. Our Emailings for Congress 2014 are scheduled only through April 2014.

© 2013