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Turn to Jesus (Article)

Building the Church in 2008
147 Women Gather for the Youth Formators Convention in Detroit

convention women

February 22, 2008. Oxford, Michigan. A total of 147 women from all over the United States and Canada gathered for the Youth Formators Convention at the Queen of the Family Retreat Center in Oxford, Michigan from January 23 – 27, 2008. The theme was “Build Together to Serve the Church.”

The purpose of the convention was to offer women working in the youth apostolates a deeper understanding of how to work with the local Church structures as a parishioner and as a Catholic leader.  Father Scott Reilly, LC, territorial director of the Atlanta territory, and Fr. Emilio Diaz, LC, director of apostolate for North America, led the women through these important topics.

Bishop Quinn from the Detroit diocese celebrated the first Mass and was introduced to the youth apostolates for girls, including K4J, Challenge, and Pure Fashion. He expressed his gratitude for the work with the youth and discussed some of the challenges that our current culture presents to the girls. 

In addition to the general sessions, there were specific tracks for each of the youth apostolates.  Vince Koehler and Sophia Saaed, the marketing team from Mission Network, discussed how to apply marketing strategies to our work. National K4J director Kathleen Conklin gave a talk on personal organization which the women found “hilarious and helpful.”

Brenda Sharman, national director of the Pure Fashion apostolate, said, “I saw the ladies laughing, being inspired and being touched by the love of God through all the Movement members, consecrated
convention women
and Legionary priests.”

She added, "Having the Bishop celebrate Mass for us was such a blessing.  We hope that he knows how much we desire to serve him and all the bishops."

In the spirit of ecclesial communion, the women organized a campaign called “Building the Church” in which each team was asked to “build” by watching for others’ charitable acts and then giving them a brick.  The bricks were then placed on outlines of cathedrals.  The winning team, from Minnesota, was given a Mass said for their intentions. In a gesture of solidarity and charity, they offered it for the Regnum Christi consecrated women helping with the convention.

Entertainment was provided one evening by the Young Women’s Regnum Christi track participants, as the ladies went “down under” to an outback café in preparation for World Youth Day 2008.  They thoroughly enjoyed themselves, singing karaoke in Australian accent, eating Tim-Tim cookies with hot chocolate, and competing for World Youth Day t-shirts.

Upon completion of the convention, the convention team met for the last time to discuss the outcome.  “I felt like we were floating” commented one team member, as the others nodded in agreement.  The prayers and sacrifices of the consecrated women of Regnum Christi, the National Directors, the convention team and the participants themselves, made this convention one that will not be forgotten. 



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