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Catholic Witness in a Nation Divided
Laity and leaders gather at Michigan conference to discuss the future for the Catholic Church

Bridging a chasm

Ypsilanti, Michigan -- Catholic leaders discussed the future of the Catholic Church in the present “Brave New World” of the 21st century and injected some pro-life enthusiasm into the crowd attending the Catholic Witness in a Nation Divided conference on Jan. 12, 2013 in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

On the campus of Eastern Michigan University, Regnum Christi members were among the more than 700 people who attended the conference, sponsored by Ave Maria Communications and, in part by Citizens for a Pro-Life Society.

The consecrated women of Regnum Christi were on hand with a booth among the many vendors at the conference.  Celine Kelly and Sarah Lang were offering packets with information to enthrone the Sacred Heart in one’s home, and selling books and other items from the bookstore of the Queen of the Family Retreat Center in Oxford, Michigan.

Al Kresta, CEO of Ave Maria Communications and host of the talk show “Kresta in the Afternoon,” moderated the event.  In a message in the conference program, he said the reason his organization, which produces Ave Maria Radio from Ann Arbor, Michigan, decided to host the conference was to help the Church during these confusing times  “plausibly” communicate “the will of God” through “peer to peer exhortation” via the laity. 

During the course of the event, keynote speakers addressed the conference topics of immigration, pro-life witness, religious liberty and the redefinition
Celine and Sarah
Consecrated women Celine Kelly and Sarah Lang at their booth at the conference
of marriage.  The speakers included Deal Hudson, President of the Pennsylvania Catholics Network and former publisher of Crisis Magazine; Kevin Appleby, Director of the Office of Migration and Refugee Policy and the Department of Migration and Refugee Services for the US Conference of Catholic Bishops; Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life; Prof. Gerard Bradley from the University of Notre Dame Law School; and William May, Founder and President of Catholics for the Common Good.

Some well-known Catholic leadership made up the panels who added to the day’s dialogue.  They included Fr. Robert Sirico, President of the Acton Institute; Gregory Popcak, founder and executive director of the Pastoral Solutions Institute; author and syndicated talk show host and speaker, Teresa Tomeo; and Dr. Monica Miller, founder of Citizens for a Pro-Life Society.  Also present were Dr. Michael New, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Michigan, Dearborn; Robert J. Muise, co-founder and senior counsel at the American Freedom Law Center;  and Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Law Center.  David Grobbel, associate director of Marriage, Family and Prolife, represented the Archdiocese of Detroit. 

To find out more about the topics and conclusions discussed, including:

  • what our Church may be like in 5 years
  • the Bishop’s views on immigration reform
  • how to stay active in the prolife movement post election 
  • how to resist the efforts to redefine marriage,

click here to read a blog by Kelly Luttinen, public relations advisor for the Legion of Christ and Regnum Christi.



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Sponsored by the congregation of the Legionaries of Christ and the Regnum Christi Movement, Copyright 2011, Legion of Christ. All rights reserved.

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