February 1, 2016

RECongress 2016 (#14)

RECongress 2016 is this Month!
If you haven't already done so, be sure to make your hotel reservations now for the 2016 Religious Education Congress. Some of our contracted hotel rates are only good through this week. Haven't received your tickets yet? Find some ways you can check on your tickets. Anyone who hasn't received their tickets in time for Congress can request a barcode by email to print out their tickets on site in Anaheim.


Check our YouTube Channel at www.youtube.com/RECongress for the new Congress 2016 promotional video and the just-released video interview with Meredith Augustin, composer of the 2016 Congress Theme Song.


Celebrating the 60 years of RECongress, we are giving away 60 FREE registrations to Congress 2017. Be sure to visit the Office of Religious Education Booth in Hall A and enter your name on one of the iPads. Names will be randomly selected from those entered. You do not need to be present at the booth when your name is chosen. You will be notified if you are selected.

Are you receiving this Congress Emailng in your inbox? We have over 40,000 who have asked to be on the list. Pass along this emailing or our link — archive.recongress.org — to receive the latest information about Congress 2016 and encourage your friends to sign up for our Congress Emailing at archive.recongress.org/optin.htm. 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

Special Hotel Rates

NOTE: Most of the special hotel rates are only good through this Thursday, February 4. 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 Hotels listing »

Sneak a Peek at the Program Book
Be ready for Congress: We will soon be announcing the online version of the Program Book that attendees receive when they arrive at Congress 2016. Get a little extra time to plan out your weekend by downloading the Program Book for workshop and restaurant locations. Available in PDF and iPaper formats.
  — Spotlight on events at Congress
  — Workshop locations and maps
  — Tech Center schedule
  — Speaker Signing schedule
  — Exhibitor listing and Categories listing
  — Restaurant guide and map
  — Audio Recording Form

Preview the Program Book »

"Where are my Congress tickets?"
That is the most often-asked question that comes up. If you haven't received your tickets, check our Updates page for information about mailing dates and the Help page for general questions.
Jan 6 was the first mailing of Congress tickets (for registrations processed by Dec. 28)
Jan 22 was the second mailing of Congress tickets (for registrations processed by Jan. 19)
Jan 29 - Beginning February 1, all registrants will receive an  email  to print their tickets on site in Anaheim.
Check your email confirmation for additional information.


Youth Day packets

Completed Youth Day registrations are mailed a packet with name badges, Chaperone lanyards and information about their Track and their Youth Day schedule. Please check your packet when it arrives, verifying that each Chaperone/adult and each youth has their own name badge. All Youth Day packets will be mailed by February 12, 2016. If you have further inquiries, please call the Congress Registration Desk at 213-637-7348. The fee for reprinting badges onsite is $50. Note: There is NO registration on Youth Day.

Check the Updates page »

Youth Day Feature: Fr. Joe Espaillat

Both Youth Day tracks get to see the Youth Day Arena keynote and two chosen workshops, including this one and others whose sessions are held in the Convention Center meeting rooms.

Rev. Joseph A. Espaillat II is Pastor at St. Anthony of Padua Church in the Bronx, N.Y., as well as Director of Hispanic Charismatic Renewal for the New York Archdiocese and of the Hispanic Charismatic Catholic Center in the Bronx. Before this, he was assigned by Cardinal Timothy Dolan to open up an Office for Youth Ministry, where he became Director and is now Spiritual Advisor. Growing up in Manhattan, he speaks three languages: English, Spanish and Street! Fr. Espaillat is also founder of the ministry, “Messengers of Christ.”

Session L - "GOD IS MY H.E.R.O."
Youth Day - February 25, 2016 - Convention 207
Come to this workshop if you want to find out why God is the greatest of all superheroes. He is omnipotent and omniscient. (If you do not know what these two words mean you need to be at this workshop!) Come and find out why God is my Hero and why He can be yours as well. He gave us four reasons and they will be revealed only to those who want to receive His super powers!
See the Youth Day page »

Youth Day has an App...
Download the Youth Day app for iPhone and iPod Touch at AppStore.com/YouthDay2016! With this app you can stay up-to-date with all Youth Day speakers, musicians and performers by following them on Twitter, viewing their Web sites or "like-ing" their Facebook pages.


... and Youth Day is Social
Stay up-to-date on the latest updates about Youth Day by connecting with us on social media. The hashtags for all Youth Day activity are #LAYouthDay and #hopebound.
   Facebook: LAYouthDay
   Twitter: @LAYouthDay
   Vine: #LAYouthDay
   Instagram: #LAYouthDay

See the Youth Day page »

RECongress 2016 Statistics

We are nearing capacity (15,000) for Youth Day and approaching 15,500 people registered for Congress. You can find statistics about registration — registration numbers by country and state — on our Stats page. Congress 2016 has registered attendees from Argentina, Australia, Belize, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, Ireland, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Panama, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, Vatican and Vietnam as well as the top five states by registration: California, Nevada, Arizona, Washington and Texas.
See the 2016 Statistics page »

Archbishop Gomez Video Chat

Friday, February 26, 10:15-11:00 am – Tech Center in 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. Mary Magdalen School in Camarillo. This year will be the Archbishop's sixth annual live chat from Congress with school students.
See other Congress Spotlights »

Did You Know?

The Anaheim Convention Center is currently undergoing construction? In a few years, RECongress participants will experience the benefit of the current expansion taking place at the Anaheim Convention Center. The expansion will include additional state-of-the-art meeting space as well as improved parking, and so much more. What does this mean for Congress 2016 participants? It means parking locations have shifted a bit. See the Parking Map showing parking locations for 2016. Please note that the Convention Center is providing shuttle service to and from both the Disney Toy Story Lot just across Harbor and the Anaheim GardenWalk parking structure. For your convenience, the shuttle runs from 7 am to 10 pm. Parking is $15 — the same rate as at the Convention Center.


Watch a video about the expansion here. You can find complete information about the construction and view photos online at www.accexpansion.com.

See other Congress Spotlights »

Show Your Badge & Save Program

Congress attendees can receive promotional offers and discounts during Congress with the "Show Your Badge & Save" program. Discounts are available online for participating attractions and restaurants, including Bubba Gump Shrimp Co., La Brea Bakery Cafe, Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament, Oggi's, Rainforest Cafe, The Pizza Press, Tony Roma's, and many more!
Find out more online »

Liturgy Feature: Indonesian Liturgy

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2016 - 5:15 pm
Convention 303
Bishop Oscar Solis, presider
Music by Soerini Kheung

Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Solis was born in San Jose, Nueva Ecija, Philippines, and ordained a priest in 1979. In the Philippines, he served in the archdiocese of Manila and Cabanatuan. He also served as associate pastor at St. Rocco’s Church in Union City, N.J. and at St. Joseph Co-Cathedral in Thibodaux, LA. In 2004 he was ordained auxiliary bishop and was named Episcopal Vicar for the San Pedro Region in 2009.
See the Congress Liturgies »

Sunday English Address: Fr. James Heft, SM

Over the three days, Congress 2016 will offer 300 workshops presented by 199 speakers. Topics range from personal growth to music to spiritual topics — in English, Spanish and Vietnamese. Each Emailing we spotlight one of our presenters:


Fr. James L. Heft, a Marianist priest, is Professor and President of the Institute for Advanced Catholic Studies at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Previously, Fr. Heft spent many years at the University of Dayton in Ohio, as Chair of the Theology Department as well as Provost and Chancellor. He is author and editor of 12 books and 190 articles, and in 2011, the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities honored him with the Theodore M. Hesburgh Award for his service to Catholic higher education.

"Pope Francis, the Environment and U.S. Politics" (*)

Sunday, February 28, 2016, 8:30 am

Is Pope Francis overstepping the boundary between Church and state? Is he smart in endorsing the current scientific consensus on climate change? Is his criticism of capitalism fair? Is he polarizing rather than uniting Catholics? Join Fr. James Heft as he leads us in a examination of these issues in our Church today.
Go to the Speakers Page »

Discount Disney Tickets

Religious Education Congress attendees can purchase specially priced Disneyland resort eTickets, including Twilight Convention tickets (after 4 pm), 1-day 1-park, multi-day and park hopper tickets. The offer is only available online and is not available at the Park. Order online at  disneytickets.disney.go.com/store/ZMRB16A. Orders must be made by Wednesday, February 24, 2016 by 9:00 pm PST.
Note: eTickets are valid from Thursday, February 18, 2016 to Monday, February 29, 2016.
Read about the Disney Ticket offer »

Your Cooperation is Appreciated
Those of you who are returning Congress participants are aware that over the past few years several groups of protesters have been present, not only at our event but at many events that take place at the Anaheim Convention Center. If there are protesters at Congress, please do not engage in conversation with them, no matter what is being said. It is a fact that ignoring them is the best way of responding. We have developed a plan with Convention Center staff to handle any potential protests. Thank you for your cooperation.
See the Congress Updates page »

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. Here is an easy way to help the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, who 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. The current term runs through August 2016.

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.

Name: Archdiocese of Los Angeles - Religious Education
Organization Number: 90658

Find step-by-step instructions and information online and

Read about the Ralphs program »

Our Web Site RECongress.org

You can find all Congress information and updates online. Our upcoming RECongress Emailings feature some Congress Spotlights, and up-to-date information about Congress 2016. Check our site for updates and announcements.

RECongress Emailing

Be sure to sign-up for our twice-a-month Emailings about the latest updates and information about Congress 2016. You may opt out from our Congress Emailing at any time from the "Manage Your Subscription" link below.

Find past Emailings at archive.recongress.org/emailing.htm

© 2016  Los Angeles Religious Education Congress

RECongress 2016

RECongress Dates
February 25 (Youth Day) &
February 26-28, 2016

2016 Congress Theme
"Boundless Mercy" / "Misericordia Inagotable"

2016 Youth Day Theme

Youth Day page »

2016 Theme Reflection
See a reflection on the 2016 Congress logo by ORE Director Fr. Chris Bazyouros.

Read the Reflection »

Anaheim Convention Center
800 West Katella Ave.
Anaheim, Calif. 92802
(just south of Disneyland and Disney California Adventure).
See a Yahoo Map »

Hotel Information
See our listing of contracted hotels with special rates for Congress attendees.
See the Hotel page »

View the Guidebook
The Guidebook is your key to registration and contains all workshop and speaker descriptions, entertainment and liturgy options, and all events during Congress.
View the Guidebook »

The key to registration is the Registration Guidebook. If you attended RECongress 2015, you will automatically be mailed a Guidebook (available in late-October). If you need one, you may order one here.
Order a Guidebook »

Congress Milestones
1956 - first two-day CCD Institute (500 teachers in attendance)
1967 - first three-day “Southern California Confraternity Congress ” (7,000 in attendance)
1973 - first "Religious Education Congress" as CCD office renamed to Office of Religious Education
See the REC Milestones »

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