2017 RECongress Period 4

Religious Education Congress
Saturday, February 25, 2017

10:00 - 11:30 am



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4-01  The Bridge to a New America    Arena

America was founded by the near-genocide of one people and the enslavement of another. Since that foundation, the United States has now confronted the realized structures and systems put in place at the outset. Soon, in only a few decades from now, the United States will be – for the first time in history – a majority of minorities. This fact underlies much of the political rhetoric and discourse we now see. This session will look at that reality and how “white Christians” need to become more Christian than white.

Jim Wallis

A theologian and frequent speaker, Jim Wallis is author of 10 books, including the New York Times best-seller “God’s Politics” and his most recent, “On God’s Side: What Religion Forgets and Politics Hasn’t Learned about Serving the Common Good.” Wallis is founder and President of Sojourners and Editor-in-Chief of Sojourners magazine. His columns appear in major newspapers and blogs, and he regularly appears as a television and radio commentator. He has taught at Harvard University in Massachusetts and currently teaches a course on faith and social justice at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

4-02  the Re-energizing of Children’s Catechesis Through Song   

John Burland (bio 1-04)

Have you noticed that children respond with added enthusiasm whenever music and gesture are incorporated into catechesis? Are you looking for practical, engaging and energizing songs that deepen understanding of our Catholic faith? Then this workshop is for you! Composer and educator John Burland will share a variety of songs and activities that will energize elementary-age learners. Come ready to raise your voice as we deepen our understanding of Scripture, sacraments and Church teaching. Sing the prayers of our faith and honor Mary, as together we experience the oneness of heart that music creates.

4-03  The Bully, the Bullied and the Not-So-Innocent Bystander   

Barbara Coloroso (bio 2-09)

Breaking the cycle of violence in our homes, schools and communities involves more than merely identifying and stopping the bully. It requires that we examine the why and the how a child becomes a bully, the target of a bully and the role that bystanders play. A deadly combination is a bully who gets what he wants from his target, a bullied child who is afraid to tell, bystanders who look away, and adults who see bullying as teasing, not the predatory aggression that it is. If this combination of relationships is not radically transformed, we have enough incidences in our recent past to convince us that it is not only the bully who can terrorize our community.

4-04  The Now and the Quest

Fr. Michael Fish, OSB Cam (bio 1-07)

In this session, we will delve into looking for a spirituality and a way of praying that works for our lives today.

4-05  It’s All About Baptism: The Sacrament That Endures   

Dr. Jerry Galipeau (bio 1-12)

Discovering the power and potential of our baptism creates a key foundational element to our ministry. Too often, baptism is seen as a compartmentalized moment, “something that happened to me.” Recapture anew the sacramental moment when everything changed, when the apostles danced: the day of your baptism.

4-06  When I Am Weak, I Am Strong: Singing, Praying and Walking Amid the Mystery of Suffering

There is one common thread for all of us on the pilgrim journey: Suffering is inescapable and part and parcel of our human journey and in the many turns and tumbles that occur in our pilgrimage of faith. This session will be an opportunity to sing, pray, reach out, ache, lament, rejoice and restore. Come ready to sing, pray, reflect and ponder on what this suffering means and holds for us.

David Haas

David Haas is a member of the Campus Ministry team at Cretin-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul, Minn., where he is also founder and Executive Director of “Music and Ministry Alive!” – a formation program for high school and college-age youth. Haas has composed over 50 original collections and recordings of liturgical music with GIA Publications and has been active as a conference and workshop speaker, concert performer and recording artist for over 30 years. He has spoken internationally and has authored more than 20 books.

4-07  The Transforming Power of Authentic Love   

Have you ever longed for “more” in life? Do you ache to live the abundant life that Jesus speaks of us John 10:10? In this workshop, we will delve into what holds us back, how authentic love sets us free, and the daily encounter with Jesus Christ who powerfully transforms us into the saints we are called to be!

Sr. Miriam James Heidland, SOLT

Sr. Miriam Heidland, a member of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity, currently serves as Assistant to the SOLT Sisters American Region Superior. Originally a Division I athlete who wanted to work for ESPN, Sr. Heidland has been speaking at various conferences and retreats for over 10 years. She now speaks extensively across the United States and internationally as well on the topics of authentic love, healing, personal conversion (and sports!). She tweets and authored her first book, titled “Loved As I Am,” released in 2014.

4-08  Born to Dance: Living from the Inside Out   

Rev. Terry Hershey (bio 1-14)

In our hearts, we are all dancers. God wants us to be our true selves – joyous, aware and living each moment with arms wide open, responding to the love of the Beloved. So why do we choose to live guarded and afraid, our days filled with hurry and noise? Fear labels and dismisses and restricts. The voice of Grace tells us that we are more than our labels. More than our fear. The Hopi Native Americans say, “To watch us dance is to hear our heart speak.” So, in this workshop, let’s dance. Terry Hershey will help us learn what it means to dance free from our limitations of fear, insecurity or pain, and how, in the eyes of the Beloved, we are free to love and serve.

4-09  Our Faith Matters: A Candid Discussion About Race   

Most people do not understand social movements such as “Black Lives Matter.” What do our Roman Catholic bishops have to say regarding race relations in the United States? How do the social teachings of the Roman Catholic Church tell us to respond to the current sociopolitical and racial issues of our day? Come and experience a candid conversation with some of the most honored and nationally recognized Roman Catholic, African-American advocates for solidarity and social justice. With music, Scripture, prayer, preaching and reflection, this panel of renowned speakers will skillfully lead us in examining thorny issues. This session will conclude with a Q&A session, open mic sharing and honest discussion.

ValLimar Jansen

Traveling to over 80 events annually, ValLimar Jansen serves the Church as a composer, singer, storyteller, 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 the MC for the National Catholic Youth Conference in 2011 held in Indianapolis. ValLimar and her husband, Frank, performed for over 300,000 people at the Loreto/Angora international papal event in Italy, broadcast on EWTN and across the world.

Msgr. Raymond G. East

The grandson of Baptist Missionaries to South Africa, Msgr. Ray East was born in Newark, N.J., raised in San Diego, Calif., and is a priest of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., where he is Pastor of St. Teresa of Avila Church. He is former Director of the Office of Black Catholics and Vicar for Evangelization for the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. Msgr. East is a regular and popular speaker at the Los Angeles Congress and continues to present workshops, facilitations and keynote addresses at major national events.

Fr. Bryan N. Massingale, STD

Fr. Bryan Massingale, a priest of the Milwaukee Archdiocese, is Professor of Theology at Fordham University in New York. A noted authority on Catholic moral theology and social ethics, he has lectured extensively on ethical and racial justice issues throughout the United States and internationally. A previous Religious Education Congress Keynoter, Fr. Massingale is a former President of the Catholic Theological Society of America and has been a leader of the Black Catholic Theological Symposium.

Dr. C. Vanessa White

Dr. Vanessa White is Assistant Professor of Spirituality and Ministry and Director of the Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies and Main Specialized Ministry at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. She is Coordinator of the Elder’s Retreat in the Institute for Black Catholic Studies at Xavier University of Louisiana as well as advisor to the U.S. bishops’ Subcommittee on Certification for Ecclesial Ministry and Service. Dr. White has numerous published articles and is an experienced workshop presenter, retreat facilitator, spiritual director.

4-10  “On Earth as It Is In Heaven”   

Fr. Satish Antony Joseph (bio 1-15)

At the heart of a Christian disciple is the Kingdom (Reign) of God. In fact, the Kingdom of God is at the heart of Jesus’ proclamation. Yet, this is the most under-proclaimed message in contemporary Catholic circles. This session will survey Scripture to understand the Kingdom of God as the primary message of Jesus and the Gospels, and as the focus of the prayer that Jesus taught: “Thy kingdom come, on earth as it is in heaven.” What does it mean to “seek first the Kingdom of God” (Mt 6:33)? How can we make the Kingdom of God a reality “on earth as it is in heaven”? This session will reflect on these questions in depth and in very practical ways.

4-11  Do Not Be Afraid: Faith as Trust in the Lord!   

In the biblical foundations of Christianity, the concepts of “faith” and “trust” are essentially the same. Having faith in God does not mean that everything in life will always be smooth and easy, but that we can trust God to be with us always, to help us in our needs and never to abandon us. That, in turn, is the reason the Bible so often tells us, “Do not be afraid!” This workshop will explore some biblical stories that give us inspiring role models for trusting, faithful, fearless discipleship!

Fr. Felix Just, SJ, PhD

Fr. Felix Just is Executive Director of the Loyola Institute for Spirituality in Orange, Calif. He has taught as a Theology Professor at three Jesuit universities in California: Loyola Marymount University, the University of San Francisco and Santa Clara University. Fr. Just conducts adult faith-formation programs for parishes and dioceses, and leads biblically based days of prayer, parish missions and retreats. He has produced seven audio-CD programs with Now You Know Media and also maintains a large internationally recognized website of “Catholic resources.”

4-12  What a Global Catholic Church Looks Like: A Resource for Religious Educators   

Catholics often experience faith through the lens of their own cultural context. Yet people all around the world imagine it in an amazing range of ways. Drawing from research on the new Catholics & Cultures website, founder and scholar Tom Landy will illustrate practices and contexts that shape Catholic life for millions of people in different parts of the world, yet largely unknown to Americans. Even those participants who imagine they already know all that is interesting about Catholicism will leave this multimedia presentation with resources and ideas for exploring with their students the rich and varied expressions of faith lived by Catholics around the world.

Thomas M. Landy

Sociologist Tom Landy is Director of the Rev. Michael C. McFarland, S.J. Center for Religion, Ethics and Culture at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass., where he also is a lecturer in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. With his primary research in global Catholicism, he founded and leads research for the web-based initiative Catholics & Cultures. Landy also founded in 1992 the Collegium, a consortium of 65 Catholic colleges and universities in the United States and Canada.

4-13  A Woman’s Place, A Woman’s Work, A Woman’s Call to Ministry   

What does it really mean to be a woman serving in ministry in the Catholic Church today? Through Scripture, storytelling and song, in hard questions that seek complex but hopeful answers, let us explore the unique gifts and blessings that women bring. Come be inspired by the example of disciples who have embraced trust in their baptism, giving new meaning to leadership, authority and ministry. With them and for all women and men of faith, let us renew our claim to our rightful place, our indispensable work, and our prophetic call to serve God’s people in the Church.

Diana Macalintal

Diana Macalintal is Director of Worship for the Diocese of San Jose, Calif. She has been keynote at several gatherings, including the Mid-Atlantic Congress and the College­ville Conference on Music, Liturgy and the Arts, in addition to her appearances at the L.A. Congress as prayer leader. Macalintal is author of four books. Her latest, “Joined by the Church, Sealed by a Blessing,” to help parishes prepare engaged couples for discipleship, she co-authored with her husband, Nick Wagner, with whom she co-founded Team­RCIA.

4-14  A New President: In Conflict or Harmony with the Gospels?   

A new U.S. President and a new Congress mean changes in vision, mission and priorities for our country. What are the implications for us as disciples of Jesus? As Catholics? As leaders in the ministry and service of our parish communities? For the next four years, who will be the most needy in our communities? This workshop will explore some of those possibilities, and help us fashion a way forward that continues to be prophetic and faithful to our mission to serve others after the example of Jesus.

Fr. Allan Figueroa Deck, SJ, PhD, STD (originally scheduled with Cardinal Roger Mahony)

Rev. Allan Deck, a Jesuit priest, is Professor of Catholic Social Values and Professor of Theology at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. Recognized nationally and internationally as an expert in Hispanic pastoral care in the United States, he has spent almost 40 years serving the Church as administrator of a Latin parish, diocesan director of Hispanic pastoral care in Orange County, Calif., and as advisor to the California Bishops and the U.S. Catholic Bishops conferences. Father Deck is founder of the Hispanic Institute at the Jesuit School of Teleology in Berkeley, Calif., and of the Loyola Institute for Spirituality in Orange, Calif; and co-founder of the Hispanic Theology Academy.

4-15  You Can Call Us? Understanding the Up and Coming Post-Millennial Generation of Children and Adolescents   

For years all of the talk has been about the Millennial Generation, but in our families, classrooms and churches, another generation of young people are growing up and graduating, who are very different from the millennials. What will be the impact of this next generation? Regardless of what you call them – Generation Z, the Plurals, Digitals, Posts or iGen – each name sheds a light on how we are coming to understand this new generation. This workshop will share what we know about them, what we don’t know and the implications for those who parent, teach and minister to them.

Charlotte McCorquodale, PhD

Louisiana-native Dr. Charlotte McCorquodale is currently President of Ministry Training Source. Dr. McCorquodale’s professional career in Catholic youth ministry and lay ecclesial ministry has spanned three decades, serving in parish, school, diocesan and university ministry settings. She serves as an international educator, researcher and consultant for the fields of lay ecclesial ministry, certification standards and processes, youth ministry and e-learning. Her recognitions include receiving the 2002 National Youth Ministry Award from the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry.

4-16  Embrace Trust with Both Arms and Heart   

Megan McKenna (bio 2-18)

“Hope” and “trust” are like two arms. “Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage,” says St. Augustine. We are given both to live life with others and embrace the vast world and all our brothers and sisters. Who do you grasp and hold onto for a dearer truer life? How do you take courage and grab ahold of life with both arms? Come, seek to both embrace and entrust your life and others to the fullness of God’s way – as God embraces and trusts us.

4-17  Reading the Scriptures with the Mind, Eyes and Heart of a Woman   

This is a presentation on feminist biblical interpretation that will explain what it is, when it began, how to do it, and why it is important not only for women believers but for men as well. Examples will be shared of how feminist liberative biblical interpretations springing from circles of grassroots women and biblical scholars have transformed families and faith communities in Latin America and the United States.

Sr. Barbara E. Reid, OP, PhD

Sr. Barbara Reid, a Dominican Sister of Grand Rapids, Mich., is Vice President and Academic Dean at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, where she has served since 1988 as Professor of New Testament Studies. She is author of several works, her latest book is “Wisdom’s Feast: An Invitation to Feminist Interpretation of the Scriptures.” In addition to her books and teaching, Sr. Reid has approximately 25 speaking engagements a year throughout the United States and Canada along with travel to Ireland, New Zealand, Bolivia, Peru, Brazil, Thailand and Guatemala.

4-18  Eucharistic Evangelization Like Never Before   

Rev. Michael Schmitz (bio 2-21)

True evangelization involves an encounter with the true and living God. It is something more and more profound than mere “assent” to the “idea” of Jesus. It is meeting Jesus in a real way. Because of this, our single most powerful place of encountering the Lord is in the Eucharist. How could Catholics help more people get in contact with the Real Presence of Jesus in a way that transforms their lives?

4-19  Something’s Happening Here: What Makes Vibrant Catholic Parishes Work   

Bill Simon and his team at Parish Catalyst researched 244 vibrant Catholic parishes to determine what made them exceptional. The study found that the parishes shared four essential practices: 1) a form of shared leadership; 2) intentional fostering of spiritual maturity and discipleship in their parishioners; 3) excellent Sunday worship; and 4) strong focus on effective evangelization. His new book, “Great Catholic Parishes,” presents the research findings, shares ideas and provides encouragement for building healthier parishes. In this workshop, Simon takes us through some of the findings and offers a few practical solutions to familiar challenges.

William E. Simon Jr.

Catholic author, businessman, lawyer, gubernatorial candidate and philanthropist, Bill Simon has spearheaded a variety of faith-based initiatives. He is a former Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of California, Los Angeles in the School of Law and Department of Economics and was a Senior Fellow at their School of Public Policy. In 2012, he founded Parish Catalyst, a non-profit that stimulates creative ideas in parish ministry. The results of their research is gathered in a new book, “Great Catholic Parishes: How Four Essential Practices Make Them Thrive.”

4-20  Challenges and Opportunities of Faith as Presented in the Gospels   

Thomas D. Stegman, SJ (bio 1-21)

In addition to presenting the life, ministry, death and Resurrection of Jesus, the four Gospels set forth the challenges of a life of faith. Faith, in the biblical understanding, focuses first and foremost on our relationship with Christ within the context of community. Matthew presents the life of faith in terms of being learners of Jesus and his ways; Mark as following Jesus on his “way” to the cross; Luke as imitating God’s generosity and mercy; and John as abiding in Christ’s love. While the life of faith is challenging, it is also an opportunity to continue the ministry of Jesus.

4-21  Oh this Grace Reaching Out for Me – How Can it Be?   

How do we as believers, move from doubt to embrace trust? The journey from doubt to trust can only occur when we have a deep understanding of the concept of grace. It is only when grace becomes not something to get, but rather something that is ... the very self-gift of God, the very presence of God in the core of our being. Only then can we encounter this grace reaching out to us and enabling us to say, “I trust in you.” Understanding this journey is at the heart of this session.

Sr. Maureen Sullivan, OP, PhD

Sr. Maureen Sullivan is a Dominican Sister of Hope from New York. After 26 years of teaching theology, she is now Professor Emerita at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire. She also serves as a religion consultant for the William H. Sadlier Publishing Company. A popular speaker at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, Sr. Sullivan has written two books on Vatican II: “101 Questions and Answers on Vatican II” and “The Road to Vatican II: Key Changes in Theology.”

4-22  Beauty that Saves: Art in Service of Liturgy and Catechesis   

Since the dawn of Christianity, architects and artists have assisted the Church in the proclamation of the Gospel and the celebration of the liturgy. Each generation has brought new insights, new technologies and new styles to this process. And yet, the mission of the Sacred Arts has always remained the same. This workshop will look at how art and architecture from past and present can best enhance our prayer and catechesis today.

Johan M.J. van Parys, PhD

Dr. Johan van Parys has served as Director of Liturgy and the Sacred Arts at The Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis since 1995. He is a national consultant and speaker for RCL Benzinger, is a Professor in Theology at St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minn., and a member of the International Board of the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums. Dr. van Parys is as an art consultant for numerous dioceses, cathedrals and parishes and lectures throughout the country. His book, “What’s the Smoke For? And Other Burning Questions About the Liturgy,” was published in 2014.

4-23  It’s All About Joy – Evangelizing Young Adults   

We can’t expect young adults to join our faith communities if we haven’t reached out to them with the Good News. This workshop will unpack the Church’s vision for evangelizing young adults and Pope Francis’ challenge to do so with joy. We will explore practical strategies for meeting them where they are, forming relationships with them and inviting them to encounter Jesus Christ in Word, sacrament and community.

Joan C. Weber

Based in Omaha, Neb., Joan Weber is Project Coordinator for Youth and Family Ministry Services at the Center for Ministry Development (CMD). She is Coordinator for Young Neighbors in Action, editor of Fashioning Faith (CMD’s subscription website for lifelong faith formation), and teaches the Justice and Service Course in the Certificate in Youth Ministry Studies. She is a contributing author to a number of publications and trains parish leaders in lifelong faith formation and young adult ministry.

4-24  Moving with Trusting Hearts and Minds for Grace to Enter from Unlikely Places   

The Psalms call us to lift up our hearts and trust in God. We are called to let kindliness and loyalty never leave us, as Solomon notes in Proverbs: “tie them around [our] necks and write them on the tablet of [our] hearts, so that [our] lives should be set on a pathways of love and trust.” Come practice walking along these paths. Be challenged to stretch soul, heart and body to a new consciousness of our daily encounters with God through prayerful movement and dance. John West, Artistic Director of the Valyermo Dancers, leads this interactive workshop. All levels of experience are welcome.

John West, Obl OSB, BA, MEd, MA

John West is a sacred and liturgical dance workshop leader and clinician. The Oblate of St. Andrew’s Abbey in Valyermo, Calif., is a member of the North American Academy of Liturgy. West, a noted choreographer in the California Dance Research Project, has led international and national workshops and lectured on medieval and sacred dance. His Religious Education Congress experience began in 1970, and since 1991, he has served on the Congress Liturgy Committee.

4-25  Five Ways Psychology Can Inform Cate­chesis   

Dr. Joseph D. White (bio 1-26)

How can what we know about human behavior, cognition and memory, child development and emotions help us form the faith of others? In this session, Dr. Joseph White, Clinical Psychologist and National Catechetical Consultant, will discuss the ways psychology can help us be more effective as catechists.

4-26  Prayer in the Catholic Tradition: Exploring the Other Side of Your Soul

In 1955, when the Benedictine priest Fr. Bede Griffiths went to India to establish a Christian contemplative community he said that he was also going there to “explore the other half of my soul.” Catholic prayer is so much richer than many people realize. In this lively, informative, encouraging and sometimes challenging presentation, Dr. Robert Wicks will offer practical approaches to learning, practicing and sharing a vital prayer life that can, in Jesus’ words, “make all things new.” Topics will include making friends with the Gospel, deepening your own “rule of prayer” and “street spirituality.”

Dr. Robert J. Wicks

Dr. Robert Wicks has taught in universities and professional schools of psychology, medicine, nursing, theology and social work, and has published over 50 books for both professionals and the general public. He is currently on the faculty at Loyola University Maryland. In 2006, Dr. Wicks received the first annual Alumni Award for Excellence in Professional Psychology from Widener University and is a recipient of the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the American Counseling Association. He also received the Papal Medal from Pope John Paul II for his service to the Church.

4-70  Vietnamese Workshop: Epiclesis: The Role of the Holy Spirit in the Liturgy   

This workshop will study the indispensable role played by the Holy Spirit in the Liturgy of the Church. By focusing on liturgical texts and sources, attendees will have a better understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit in the sacraments and especially in the Eucharistic celebration.

Rev. Thinh Duc Pham

Ordained a priest for the Los Angeles Archdiocese in 2002, Fr. Thinh Pham served for four years as Associate Pastor at St. John of God Church in Norwalk. Upon completing his first assignment, he was sent to pursue graduate studies at the Pontifical Institute of Liturgy in Rome. Fr. Pham has completed his License of Sacred Liturgy in 2010 and is currently teaching Liturgy at St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, Calif.

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