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What’s New- Congress Is In Session

February 5, 2016

Sometimes I like to use this blog as an opportunity to keep readers up-to-date with what’s happening here at Nativity, travels, books, etc. Despite the presidential campaign trail, I’m a little busy with a different kind of “congress” this month.

These next few weeks will be Catholic “congress” season. Right now, we’re right in the middle of the Mid-Atlantic Congress, a large convention in downtown Baltimore hosted by the Association of Catholic Publishers and The Archdiocese of Baltimore. It’s a great time to check out what’s new on the scene, hear great keynotes by leaders like Cardinal DiNardo and Carolyn Woo of Catholic Relief Services, as well as run into longtime friends and talk shop. This event always serves as a reminder of how extremely grateful I am for the dedication and brilliance of our editors and publicists at Ave Maria Press. They are wonderful people in every way. If you’re around the MAC anytime, stop by their booth. You might even run into a few of us…

Earlier this afternoon, Tom and I addressed a group as presenters at a “Mega-Workshop.” We spoke mainly about communication tools from our newest book Rebuilding Your Message, including how to be effective preachers and leaders at the parish level in the New Evangelization. Of course, we hope the message of the book reaches communicators at all organizational levels of the church, and even something for those who don’t work for the Church.

If you’re around Baltimore or attending the conference on Friday, don’t miss Nativity’s own Chris Wesley, our Director of Student Ministries. He is giving two workshops about building great volunteer teams as well as a vision for rebuilding youth ministry.

Then later this month, I’m headed to the opposite coast. The Los Angeles Religious Education (RE)Congress is a similar gathering with a slightly more catechetical focus. We sometimes call evangelization “going wider,” and catechesis “going deeper.” I’ll stop and see my friends from Parish Catalyst, and look forward to whatever other surprises await.

Oh yeah, did I mention there’s something called Lent happening? Lots going in in Timonium, including one of my favorite events of the year, our “Forty Hours of Prayer.” It’s literally that- Beginning at 6 am on Ash Wednesday, we host 40 hours of continuous prayer in our sanctuary including silent adoration, sung praise and worship, confessions, Mass, etc. I can think of no better way to begin the holy season. I hope all our parishioners, as well as any seeker, will find some time to drop in and spend some time reflecting as we prepare our hearts for Easter.

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