RECongress 2015

RECongress Dates
March 12 (Youth Day) &
March 13-15, 2015

2015 Congress Theme
"See" / "Ver"

2015 Youth Day Theme
"Talk Jesus with Me"

Youth Day »

2015 Theme Reflection
Read Sr. Prendergast's reflection on the 2015 (and prior) Congress themes.

Read more »

Did you know?
Fr. Christopher Bazyouros will become the next Director of the Office of Religious Education. Fr. Bazyouros  served at several different churches in the archdiocese before coming to the ORE to help in Adult Ministry.

Congress Advertiser:

RECongress is just weeks away!

Ash Wednesday means RECongress is LESS than a month away. And our 2015 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress literally could not function without the hundreds of volunteers who give of their time. This month we hold a Volunteer meeting for Youth Day and Congress volunteers. Find out about the Congress Choir and learn about opportunities for Eucharistic Ministers  If you have attended Congress in the past and would like to find out more about becoming a volunteer, please consider this your "personal invitation."

Are you receiving our Congress Emailngs in your inbox? Pass along this emailing or our link – – to receive the latest information about Congress 2015 and encourage your friends to sign up for our Congress Emailing at 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 2015 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress dates are:
• March 12, 2015 (Youth Day)
• March 13-15, 2015

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 »

Online Registration
Online registration is available for both Congress and Youth Day. Register online by credit card. You can register as individual or a "group" (2 or more people, all just paying with one credit card).
Register Online »

Need the Guidebook in Print?
The Guidebook is available online in a variety of ways – downloadable as a PDF or viewable online in iPaper format, and as web pages. If you haven't already been mailed a Registration Guidebook, you may order one here. (Guidebooks are mailed out weekly on Wednesdays.)
Order a Guidebook »

Volunteer Meeting
All registered Volunteers should plan to attend the Volunteer Meeting on Tuesday, February 24, 2015 at 7:30 pm (7:15 hospitality) at Bishop Bishop Conaty-Our Lady of Loretto High School, 2900 West Pico Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90006 in the gym. Not sure if you are a registered Volunteer? English Volunteers can check with Ana Gomez at; Spanish Volunteers should email Ramona Meza at
See the Volunteer page »


Extraordinary Ministers at Congress
Are you a trained Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion? We invite you to sign up to be a floor Minister of the Cup for any one, two, three, or all the Arena liturgies at Religious Education Congress. Floor Ministers are Ministers of the Cup on the "floor" of the Arena. (There is separate training during the Religious Education Congress on Friday at noon for any Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion for the upper levels of the Arena.)

If you haven't signed up, you must attend one of the three remaining mandatory trainings to serve as a FLOOR Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. See the Volunteer page for more information, training locations, and the link to sign up.
See the Volunteer page »


The 200-voice Congress Choir
John Flahery, the Congress Musical Director, extends an invitation to those who are interested in singing at the Closing Liturgies at Congress (Sunday at 8:00 am and 3:30 pm). Volunteer musicians are required to attend two scheduled rehearsals offered in different regions of the Los Angeles Archdiocese prior to Congress. There are usually 3 or 4 primary rehearsal dates and locations for Congress Choir, and additional rehearsals are usually planned for the Inland Empire, San Diego, Northern California areas as well as Reno, Nev., and Phoenix, Ariz. See the Musical Director's Invitation
See the Volunteer page »


New Saturday Lunchtime Session Added
Saturday, Convention Ballroom AB – 11:45 - 12:30 pm
Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez
“Church and the Future”
A special lunchtime session will be offered and facilitated by Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, currently chair of the Council of Cardinals appointed by Pope Francis to advise him on reform of the Roman Curia. This presentation will include opportunity for input, discussion and dialogue.
See Other Congress Updates »


Youth Day T-Shirts
Today! (February 16) is the last day you can pre-order your Youth Day 2015 T-shirts – with the theme “Talk Jesus with Me.” Customize your Youth Day shirt with your youth group or parish name on the back for only $2 additional. Pre-order discount rate:
T-shirts: $13; V-Neck: $16; Sweatshirts: $25: $25
Adult sizes: S, M, L, XL, 2XL, 3XL, 4XL
(2XL - 4XL sizes are $2 extra for T-shirts and $5 extra for hoodies.)
Order online at or by email
Go to the Youth Day page »


Youth Day Speaker Feature: Mary Bielski
Both Tracks at Youth Day are set to see the Youth Day Arena speaker and one additional workshop, including this one and 11 others whose sessions are held in the Convention Center meeting rooms.

Born in Indianapolis, Mary Bielski lived her passion through youth ministry. In 2006 she founded ALL4HIM Ministries and three years later left her pharmaceutical sales job to immerse herself in full-time ministry. With 15 years of experience in youth ministry and 12 years as a national speaker, Bielski has spoken to over 75,000 teens and adults around the nation at high schools and young adult retreats, from major national youth conferences to parish and diocesan rallies.

Session C - "The Truth About Love, Sex and Relationships"
Youth Day, Thursday, March 12, 2015
This session presents the two hottest topics on the planet for teens: God and sex. Focusing on the virtue of chastity as being more than just “no sex,” this talk exposes the lies the world offers regarding relationships and sex, and points to a deeper truth of authentic love found in Christ. Through funny stories and compelling witness, Mary Bielski presents a message of hope for purity and freedom found in the power of Jesus.
See the Youth Day Workshops »


RECongress Spotlight: Archbishop Video Chat
Friday, March 13, 10:15-11:00 am – Tech Center @ Hall A
Join us Friday morning at the Tech Center as Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez conducts a live online chat session with students from St. Finbar Elementary School in Burbank. This will be the Archbishop's fourth annual live, online chat from Congress with school students.
See past Congress Chats
See other 2015 RECongress Spotlights »


Congress Liturgy Feature: Australian Liturgy
Congress annually offers a variety of liturgies and prayer services. We will be featuring some of our 17 Eucharistic Liturgies and 4 Prayer Services from the Congress weekend here in our Emailings.

Friday, March 13, 2015, 5:15 pm
Convention Arena
Rev. Richard Leonard, presider
Music by Michael Mangan, John Burland and Andrew Chinn
The Australian Culture Mass is new to Congress in 2015! Come and celebrate the universal Church with Aboriginal dance, the haunting sounds of the didgeridoo, and Aussie musicians Michael Mangan, John Burland and Andrew Chinn. Fr Richard Leonard and Fr Rob Galea will lead us in a liturgy steeped in both the ancient and modern Church from "the land down under."

Jesuit priest Fr. Richard Leonard is Director of the Catholic Office for Film & Broadcasting, based in Melbourne, Australia. He is a Visiting Professor at the Gregorian University in Rome and has been a Visiting Scholar at the University of California, Los Angeles. Fr. Leonard, a popular speaker at the RECongress, is author of eight books, including “What Are We Doing on Earth for Christ’s Sake?” and “Where the Hell is God?”
View the 2015 RECongress Liturgies »


Speaker Feature: GIA Workshop
Over the three days, Congress 2015 will offer 309 workshops presented by 202 speakers. Topics range from personal growth to music to spiritual topics – in English, Spanish and Vietnamese. Each Emailing we spotlight one of those speakers:

The Old Gravel Road: Storytelling and Song from the Heartland (*)
Session 5-07, Saturday, March 14, 2015 - 1:00 - 2:30 pm - Arena
Telling our stories is a healing practice. And when we heal ourselves, we have the potential to restore one another. Jeanne Cotter, known for her vivid musical storytelling, and her uncle Michael Cotter, a Minnesota farmer and national award-winning storyteller, invite you to experience the value of your own life, through song, musical prayer and the mirror of storytelling. Joined by Liam Lawton, Tony Alonso and Betsey Beckman, this event will leave you transformed, ready to share your own story and be wholly present to another’s. This is where healing begins.
Jeanne Cotter is a liturgical composer, author, parish mission director and active singer-songwriter. For over a decade she has performed her original piano works and songs throughout the United States and Canada. Jeanne shares her heart­warming and humorous stories of growing up in an Irish Catholic family in southern Minnesota and what she calls “the authority of experience.” Her latest work, “The Old Gravel Road,” is due in 2015.

National award-winning storyteller Michael Cotter (and uncle to Jeanne Cotter) has performed throughout the United States, including the Smithsonian Folk Festival, National Storytelling Festival, television and radio broadcasts, schools, retreats, fairs and festivals. Michael starred in a healing stories film used by the Mayo Clinic. At 83, he still spends his days farming outside of Austin, Minn.

Liam Lawton is a priest of the Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin, Ireland, where he serves as Director of Music. He has recorded 15 collections of music and has written two books; his most recent is “Where God Hides.” Fr. Lawton’s music has been translated into many languages and he has recorded two PBS specials. He has presented at conferences in Europe and across the United States and regularly presents at the L.A. Congress.

Tony Alonso’s contemporary liturgical music appears in numerous compilations and hymnals, and he has presented at liturgy, music and theology conferences throughout the world. Alonso is currently a doctoral candidate in the Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University in Atlanta. Formerly, he served as Director of Music for Campus Ministry at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.

Based in Seattle, Betsey Beckman is a liturgical movement artist, storyteller, spiritual director, author and InterPlay leader. She regularly appears as artist/presenter at national conventions, online retreats and international pilgrimages. Beckman is Director of Movement Ministry at St. Patrick Church in Seattle and Director of The Dancing Word, her company that produces DVDs celebrating women’s arts and spirituality.

See other Congress Speakers »

Disney Tickets Offer
Religious Education Congress attendees can purchase specially priced Disneyland resort tickets prior to your arrival. There are discounted rates for Twilight Convention tickets (after 4 pm), 1-day 1-park, multi-day and park hopper tickets. This offer is only available online at and not available at the Park. Tickets are valid Tuesday, March 10 through Sunday, March 22, 2015. The online ticket store closes 9:00 PM PST on Tuesday, March 10, 2015.
Check online for restrictions and bulk ticket orders.

See the Updates page »


Special Hotel Rates
Don't forget to make your travel arrangements now. 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 contracted rates.

See the Listing of Hotels »


Just for Southern Californians
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 just began last month. If you were part of the program last year, we thank you and encourage you to re-enroll again for this year's term.

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: 90658

Find step-by-step instructions and information online and

Read about the Ralphs program »
You can always find the latest Congress information and updates online. Though our Congress Emailings feature some of our Congress Speakers, Spotlights, Entertainment and Liturgies, you can find the complete listing online at www.RECongress. And check our updates pages updates and announcements.
See the 2015 Updates page »age »


RECongress Emailing
Be sure to sign-up for this twice-a-month Emailing about the latest Congress updates and information. You may opt out from our Congress Emailing at any time from the "Manage Your Subscription" link below.

See past Emailings »


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