RT1 – Promoting a Joyful Culture of Virtue for Young People
When we travel across the country and encounter young people with the brilliant yet demanding lifestyle of virtue and freedom – where do we find them? With even younger ages of first exposure to pornography, increased rates of middle and high school sexting, and confusion surrounding gender identity like never before, we are finding that the matters of greatest concern and the deepest question in the hearts of the youth of today are those involving relationships and sexuality. In this presentation, join The Culture Project as we share our own tricks of the trade, tips to engage the heart, how we have found success in breaking through, and why we always remain hopeful.
Lindsay Fay works as a Mission Team Manager for The Culture Project International where she focuses on Training, Formation, and Outreach Curriculum for the organization. She met The Culture Project after a short time working for the Theology of the Body Institute in Philadelphia where she is currently in pursuit of certification. She grew up in Southern California and is a 2015 graduate of Santa Clara University. Her greatest ministry passion lies in sharing the messages of chastity and human dignity with youth and young adult audiences and has spoken to thousands of young people on these topics over the last five years working for the mission.
RT2 – Children of Divorce: How Dioceses and Parishes Can Help Them Heal
Perhaps you have seen statistics regarding the higher divorce rate for children of divorce and research concerning the significant number of divorced Catholics who have left the Church, taking their children with them. Arguably, providing pastoral care for these young people is one of the most pressing needs facing our Church. It also serves as a much needed marriage building and evangelizing initiative. However, where do we begin? And how can we sustain these efforts? Please join Lynn Kapusinski to learn and discuss ideas for building this greatly needed initiative.
Lynn Cassella-Kapusinski, LCPC, NCC, is a licensed clinical professional counselor, pastoral counselor, and a leading figure in Catholic pastoral care of children from divorced or separated families. As President and Founder of the Faith Journeys Foundation, Inc., she works with parishes and dioceses to offer pastoral care programs to facilitate children’s healing in a Catholic context. Lynn is also a child of divorce who has been happily married for nearly two decades and, as such, serves as a beacon of hope for these families. Her work has been recognized by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family, the Knights of Columbus, and many dioceses. She has appeared on EWTN and Relevant Radio and speaks at conferences around the country.
RT3 – Empowering Couples to Create Rhythms for Vibrant Marriages
Families are feeling the effects of the pandemic, from job loss, sickness, death to just relationship strain in close quarters. Strong marriages overflow into the life of the family, yet many couples live as roommates. Join the discussion of how we can empower and remind couples to build rhythms and rituals into their everyday life to strengthen their sacrament.
Jason and Sarah Kidd have been married 16 years and live in greater Portland. Together they founded Intentional Intermission Ministries to help couples give up the rat race to reset and rest in the Lord. They have four children, who bring them much joy and patience. Jason serves as the Director of the Marriage and Family Life Office for the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon, President elect on the NACFLM board, and as a member on the NW Regional board for Alpha. He received his MA in Theology from the University of Notre Dame. Sarah Kidd holds dual degrees in Elementary and Special Education; however, she took a break from the classroom to be a full-time mom. Sarah is passionate about Jesus, raising joyful kids, ecumenism, hospitality, and strong coffee. As a family, the Kidds love camping, road trips, new adventures, and Rice Krispy treats.
Session full – RT4 – USCCB Pastoral Framework for Marriage and Family Life Ministry: A Pathway to Renewal
In his 2016 Apostolic Exhortation on the Joy of Love, Pope Francis observed, “we do well to focus on the concrete realities” of family life. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ pastoral framework for marriage and family life ministry is a practical response to these concrete realities in families, which are at the center of the Church’s ministry. The pastoral framework is an adaptable set of principles and strategies to assist dioceses, eparchies, parishes, and all those who serve the family.
In this presentation, you will learn:
- What the framework and supplemental materials will provide for your diocese/ministry
- How to prepare your diocese to receive the framework and implement its core principles
- Why does the framework use a 3 fold-structure of educate, encourage, and engage
- When to expect the framework to reach your diocese
Dominic Lombardi, STL, serves the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops as the Executive Director of the Secretariat for Laity, Marriage, Family Life, and Youth. Prior to coming to the Conference in 2018, he served the Diocese of Harrisburg as Secretary for Catholic Life and Evangelization, and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia as the Director of Family Life. Dominic also has taught Theology for over two decades at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, PA. He and his wife Melanie are the blessed parents of six children.
Julia Dezelski is Assistant Director for Marriage and Family Life Ministry in the Secretariat of Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. She holds a doctorate of Sacred Theology from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome and advanced degrees in Religious Studies and Spirituality. She has presented and written on topics concerning the family, the role of women in the Church and society, and the sanctity of life. Julia is a regular contributor on More2Life Radio Show on EWTN and was a presenter at the World Meeting of Families in Dublin. She serves on the board of Catholics for Family Peace and the Religious Alliance Against Pornography. She lives with her husband and two daughters in the Washington, DC metro area.
RT5 – SPANISH – La Ideología De Género: Un “Virus” Para La Salud De La Familia Hispana
En esta conferencia definiremos lo que es la ideología de género, su historia, quién la impulsa, y cómo distorsiona el plan de Dios para la persona humana y la familia. Compartiremos cómo sus promotores impulsan dicha ideología en las escuelas, universidades y la cultura popular y cómo y porqué estos afectan más profundamente a nuestros jóvenes hispanos. Conversaremos sobre los aspectos médicos y psicológicos de esta problemática y abordaremos métodos y recursos para familias y formadores católicos, para orientar a nuestros niños, jóvenes y adultos para reorientar cualquier confusión y así poder sanar los extensos daños de esta ideología en las familias hispanas.
Lucia sirve como directora de la Oficina de Ministerios Interculturales de la Arquidiócesis de Atlanta, que es responsable de la pastoral matrimonial y familiar hispana. Es Cofundadora del Ministerio Renovación Familiar, un ministerio que lleva más de una década dedicado a proclamar, defender y proteger el Plan de Dios para el matrimonio y la familia, en Estados Unidos, América Latina y Europa. Lucía es consultora para varias entidades católicas en las áreas el matrimonio y la familia hispana y el ministerio multicultural. Lucía ha servido como directora del Secretariado de Laicado, Matrimonio, Vida Familiar y Juventud y la Oficina del V Encuentro en la Arquidiócesis de San Antonio, y como directora de la Oficina de Vida Familiar de la Arquidiócesis de Miami. Lucia es co-anfitriona con su esposo el Dr. Ricardo Luzondo, de la serie televisiva Creados para amar, que se transmite por EWTN español, y del programa radial semanal en vivo, Día a día con Ricardo y Lucía que se transmite por Radio Católica Mundial. Fue presentadora en el Encuentro Mundial de las Familias – Filadelfia-2015, y fue con anfitriona de las transmisiones en vivo de EWTN Español del Encuentro Mundial de las Familias – Irlanda 2018. También ha servido como colaboradora de varios secretariados de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de Estados Unidos. Lucía posee un Doctorado en Jurisprudencia de la Universidad de Stetson, completó sus cursos de Maestría en Teología Práctica y Ministerio en la Universidad de Barry y posee una Licenciatura en Administración de Empresas de la Universidad Central de la Florida. Ambos son padres de Sebastian.
RT6 – A Conversation About Accompanying Adult Children of Divorce or Separation During Dating, Engagement and Marriage Preparation
Dan will speak about how pastoral leaders can be better attuned in their marriage ministries to the needs of adult children of divorce and provide different practical ways that leaders can minister to this group of individuals, especially to couples who are engaged or married. He will briefly address and give further resources on research, several common wounds, and how adult children of divorce are not just a group in need of pastoral care, but also are witnesses to authentic married love which they can, at times, see more clearly on account of their wound.
Dr. Daniel Meola
Dr. Daniel Meola earned his Ph.D. in Theology of Marriage and Family from the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family in Washington, D.C. In 2018, he and his wife Bethany founded Life-Giving Wounds ministry to bring Christ’s healing to young adults and adults whose parents have divorced or separated. As a core part of this healing, it aims to help people make a life-long gift of love in marriage and strengthen existing marriages. In this capacity and in previous work, they have accompanied hundreds of people with their relational wounds and know very intimately the challenges and hope of healing. He and his wife, Bethany, have been married since 2011 and live in Bowie, MD, with their daughters Zelie-Louise and Grace. They are members of Teams of Our Lady, an international marriage apostolate.
RT7 – Helping Children Understand and Answer Tough Moral Questions
Until recently, Christian parents did not have to explain transgenderism to their nine-year-old, or help their teen deal with mockery at school for believing that marriage is between a man and woman. Today we must equip our kids to know and speak truths that used to be self-evident. Leila will speak about her recent book, Made This Way (co-authored with Trent Horn), which offers tools and techniques to form children with the understanding they need, appropriate to their age and maturity level. The secret to teaching effectively lies in an approach that begins with the Natural Law, which the Church used for millennia to teach the moral law. The nature of male and female, and the nature of human sexuality, must make sense to a child or teen or they will go with what the culture teaches. If we are not teaching our children how to understand tough moral issues, then the world will. Leila will seek to address these problems and how to reach children with the truth.
Leila Miller is a Catholic wife and mother. She and her husband Dean have eight children (ages 10 to 28) and 10 grandchildren. Leila was a poorly-catechized Catholic who almost left the Church before her reversion in her twenties. Since then, she has taught the Faith for 25 years. Her first blog, the popular Little Catholic Bubble, ran for eight years, and her books include Made This Way: How to Prepare Kids to Face Today’s Tough Moral Issues (co-authored with Trent Horn of Catholic Answers); Primal Loss: The Now-Adult Children of Divorce Speak; Raising Chaste Catholic Men; and Impossible Marriages Redeemed: They Didn’t End the Story in the Middle. Leila has been featured on Catholic and secular print media, radio, and television. Leila’s current blog can be found at LeilaMiller.net. She and her family live in Phoenix, AZ.
RT8 – Three Things You Can Do to Offer Hope, Help, and Healing to Catholics Dealing With Domestic Abuse
Domestic abuse seems like an impossible, hopeless situation but that is not true. Every day, survivors seek safety, children recover from the trauma of witnessing abuse and those who use abuse have the chance to change their behavior. Join us to learn Catholic Teaching about abuse including material from Amoris Laetitia. Choose three simple things you can do to help the situation. Learn how to enhance those choices so that your parish, diocese or Catholic organization can be an instrument of peace. There is hope and help and you may be the person who is asked to share it.
Sharon O’Brien, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Director of Catholics For Family Peace Education and Research Initiative (CFFP), is an educator, author, and international presenter on the issue of the Catholic response to domestic abuse. For ten years, CFFP has collaborated with fellow Catholics who are dedicated to sharing the Church teaching that family relationships are meant to be based on safety and peace, but when that is not happening there is a path to peace. Dr. O’Brien extends her Catholic work by intentionally working with the interfaith community such as Battered Womens’ Justice Project and the National Resource Center of Domestic Violence.
RT9 – COVID-19 and The Communal Grief that Affects Us All
This talk will focus on the nature of grief as it relates to the pandemic and that we are all grieving something right now: the loss of a friend or family member, the loss of income, the loss of life, as we knew it. Grief disrupts our life in many ways, but we must choose healthy ways to respond and work through the challenges we face as a collective community of people of faith. The goal is to educate people (laity and clergy) on how to deal with these challenges as they interact with others during this pandemic.
John and Sandy O’Shaughnessy
John and Sandy O’Shaughnessy are the co-founders of Good Mourning Ministry. Both experienced the depths of grief and transformation through mourning.
John is a Certified Grief Counselor (CP-C) and published author of his own riveting true story of amazing love, to the dead end of grief and a return to hope. The Greatest Gift- A Return to Hope was published in 2007 and took John out of the corporate world into his life’s mission, supporting the bereaved. He volunteered and worked for seven years at a non-profit bereavement support organization, where he was a director of fund development, grief group facilitator, workshop speaker, and grant writer and was on the board of directors for three years. John’s first novel entitled Encounter was published in 2012. It is a story of a young man’s extraordinary encounter, somewhere between this life and the next, with a mother whom he thought he lost forever, but somehow found again. John and Sandy collaborated on two books: a grief journal and The Seven Intentions of Mourning. All books are available on their website.
Sandy is Director of Religious Education at Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish and holds a master’s degree in Pastoral Ministry/ Bereavement. She feels called to minister to those who mourn. Sandy lost her mother in 1999, months after being paralyzed in a car accident. Her husband, David, died a year later. She became an only parent to two young children. In 2012 and 2013, both her father and father-in-law passed away.
Together, John and Sandy have four children, Eric, Collin, Morgan, and Ryan and granddaughter Claire Ann. Our Lady of Good Counsel in Plymouth, Michigan is their home parish.
About Good Mourning Ministry – Founded in 2011, Good Mourning Ministry is a Catholic Bereavement Apostolate serving the U.S. and Canada. Sandy and John have facilitated about 60 “Grieving with Great Hope” workshops. Their DVD of this workshop has helped thousands of people grieve with great hope and was placed on the FORMED.org platform in 2019. This workshop is prayerful, practical, and personal and has been a great resource to over 100 Catholic parishes. But the harvest is plentiful, the laborers are few. The need is great within the Catholic community for this robust grief support program. They would enjoy the opportunity to partner with more parishes across the US and Canada. Just before COVID hit, they were about to begin a new DVD called MOURN. This DVD was and hopefully will be one day an opportunity to address the needs of the Spanish speaking community. They are seeking sponsors for this project. Website: www.goodmourningministry.net
RT10 – ENGLISH: Social and Ecclesial Realities Defining Hispanic Family Life in the United States
Mindful that nearly half of all Catholics in the United States self-identify as Hispanic, especially those younger than 40, ministry with Hispanic families at this historical juncture is not an option. This session offers an overview of key sociodemographic and ecclesial realities that pastoral leaders working with Hispanic families should know in order to serve the spiritual and daily needs of this population in the church. Practical recommendations will be offered to continue the conversation.
Hosffman Ospino, PhD
Hosffman Ospino, PhD is an Associate Professor of Theology and Religious Education at Boston College, School of Theology and Ministry where he serves as Chair of the Department of Religious Education and Pastoral Ministry (DREPM) and Director of Graduate Programs in Hispanic Ministry. Dr. Ospino has been the principal investigator for several national studies on Hispanic Catholics. He is currently advancing a national study on Latino Catholic vocations. He has authored/edited 13 books and more than 120 essays, academic and general. Dr. Ospino serves on the boards of several national organizations. He was part of the central planning team for the Fifth National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry (2018).
RT11 – The Effect of Racism on Family Cohesiveness
Racism is the evil attempt to permanently separate the basic unit of human existence—-the family. This presentation will, through personal stories, examine the subtle ways that racism has stunted progress and caused division in the African American family structure, thus affecting all families’ growth and development.
Father Warren Harvey
Father Warren Harvey was born in Arkansas, the youngest of 14 children. He attended the newly integrated St Joseph HS and graduated from the University of Central Arkansas with an LPN degree. After working nearly 10 years as an ER nurse, he entered St Joseph seminary in 1982, graduated later (1988) from Notre Dame seminary with an MDiv, and was ordained that same year. For the past 30 years he has served as pastor in many parishes, and since 2016 as the Catholic chaplain for St Vincent Medical Center in Little Rock. He was also the Chaplain for the Central States Knights of Peter Claver from 1989 – 2014, and since 1988 has been the Bishop’s liaison to the Diocesan Council for Black Catholics.
RT12 – Bringing Jesus Home: Discovering the Liturgy of Domestic Church Life.
Dr. Gregory Popcak
Dr. Greg and Lisa Popcak are the directors of the Pastoral Solutions Institute, a telephone-based, group, pastoral counseling practice providing Catholic integrated psychotherapy services to individuals, couples and families around the world. Together they are the authors of more than 20 books addressing faith-based solutions to both emotional problems and the challenges of marriage and family life. They are the hosts of More2Life Radio, airing Monday through Friday at 10am Eastern (9am Central) on the EWTN radio network and SiriusXM 130.
RT13 – Behold Your Child: Ministering to Families Who Have Experienced Perinatal Loss
Behold Your Child is a ministry developed by the Archdiocese of Dubuque (Iowa) to provide hope and healing for parents and families who have experienced a life-limiting prenatal diagnosis, miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant death (whether recently or years ago). Matt will introduce participants to the ministry, share what has been learned through developing it, and discuss how the ministry resources could be utilized in your parish or diocese.
Matt Selby is the Director of Adult, Marriage, and Family Ministries for the Archdiocese of Dubuque (Iowa). Matt was raised as an Evangelical Protestant and converted to Catholicism as an adult. Since then, he has received an M.A. in Theology from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, MN) and worked in both parish and diocesan ministry. Matt and his wife, Anna, have three living children and have lost many children due to miscarriage.
RT14 – The Association For Catholic Mental Health Ministers: A Healing Presence In The Church For People Living With A Mental Illness
Mental Health Ministry in the Catholic Church is growing because many people see the need for a ministry focused on the spiritual needs of those living with a mental illness and the family members and other people who love and support people living with a mental illness. Mercy and justice call us to eliminate the stigma and discrimination that people living with a mental illness encounter in the Church and in human society. This presentation will discuss the importance of mental health ministry and how it can become an integral ministry in the Church that is available in every Catholic parish and community throughout the world.
Deacon Ed Shoener
Ed Shoener was ordained a permanent deacon in 2004 and serves at St. Peter’s Cathedral in the Diocese of Scranton. Shoener is a founding member of the Association of Catholic Mental Health Ministers and the Catholic Institute of Mental Health Ministry at the University of San Diego and the Scranton Mental Health Ministry. He serves on the Council on Mental Illness of the National Catholic Partnership on Disability and on the Board of Pathways to Promise. He earned a graduate certificate in spiritual direction from the Aquinas Institute of Theology. Shoener’s family and friends founded The Katie Foundation after his daughter, Kathleen, died by suicide in 2016. Katie’s obituary went viral because it spoke to the needs and concerns of people who live with mental illness. He lives with his family in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
RT15 – SPANISH – Ser Aceptados Por Dios: La Experiencia Que Sana Y Salva A La Familia
Los padres tenemos la gran responsabilidad de enseñar a nuestros hijos a amarse y a amar. Sin embargo, como lo prueba la psicología, a pesar de nuestros buenos deseos, todos tendemos a repetir y pasar a nuestros hijos nuestros propios traumas, miedos y limitaciones emocionales. Por eso, para poder cumplir con nuestra misión necesitamos sanar nuestra vida emocional, nacer de nuevo redimidos por el amor de Dios. En esta conferencia exploraremos lo que esto significa y las formas como podemos acceder al “corazón nuevo” que Dios da en Cristo, a todas las familias.
Dr. Dora Tobar
De origen colombiano, es esposa y madre de dos hijos. Doctora en Teología Dogmática por la Pontificia Universidad Gregoriana de Roma. Actualmente, Directora de la Oficina de Vida Familiar y Pastoral Hispana de la Diócesis de Lafayette en Indiana. Autora de artículos y material de formación para jóvenes y padres de familia como Formación de Padres al Liderazgo. Editora en jefe de la página web de los Obispos de Estados Unidos, para la familia hispana: www.portumatrimonio.org. Profesora, Conferencista a nivel nacional e internacional.
RT16 – Equipping Parishes To Support NFP
This presentation highlights some common misconceptions or gaps in knowledge that a priest/pastoral staff may have regarding Natural Family Planning. Based on years of experience working in parishes and serving couples, Christina offers tips for helping parishes grow (or begin!) their NFP support programs, including a resource packet which addresses the three key areas of normalizing conversations, offering continued access, and financial support.
Christina Valenzuela is a Natural Family Planning instructor, (pre-)teen cycle educator, speaker, and family karaoke all-star. She has 4 children with her husband, Andrés, to whom she has been married for 11 years. Christina has been an instructor in the Boston Cross Check method since 2013. She has worked in both parish and campus ministry settings, though she now works full-time from home. Recent projects include the launch of Cycle Prep— a menarche workshop for mothers and daughters— and a spotlight video presentation for The Pelican Project about the connection between NFP and pro-life ministry. Her self-published parish resource, Natural Family Planning in Our Parish: A Guide to Building Family Support in Your Pastoral Plan, was featured in NFP Awareness Week materials offered through the Archdiocese of Boston. Christina holds an undergraduate degree in Philosophy and Theology from the University of Notre Dame, a master’s degree in theology from Harvard Divinity School, and is a member of the Lay Fraternities of St. Dominic.
RT17 – A Future Full of Hope: Helping Kids Stay Catholic
We have known for some time that young people are leaving the Church in alarming numbers. New research gives us insight into why they are leaving and how we can build a foundation of faith, beginning in early childhood and continuing through the teen years, to promote lifelong engagement and discipleship.
Dr. Joseph White is a Child and Family Psychologist and Director of Catechetical Resources for OSV Publishing. A former diocesan family life director and frequent guest on Catholic radio, Dr. White is the author of 12 books, including A Catholic Parents’ Tool Box and Listening for God in Everyday Life.