2013 Courage/EnCourage Conference Presentations
Dr. J. Budziszewski
In the opening keynote address for the 2013 International Courage Conference in Mundelein, IL, Dr. J. Budziszewski gives his talk titled, “Why Is There Sex?" He is a professor for Government and Philosophy at the University of Texas, Austin and specializes in natural law. His background as a Catholic who has converted from atheism and who now lectures every day to many young atheists in his classes gives him a unique perspective on what needs to be said to our modern youth to help them to live a chaste life.
Bishop John M. LeVoir
The second speaker for the 2013 International Courage Conference in Mundelein, IL, was Bishop John M. LeVoir of the New Ulm Diocese in Minnesota who gave a talk titled, “What Does It Mean to be a Human Image of God?” With the current Year of Faith and the New Evangelization he exhorts us to address our fallen nature with three steps: Study to know our selves as a human image of God and yet that we are broken due to Adam's fall and so in need of healing. Interiorize this knowledge through a good prayer life And finally to act accordingly.
The third speaker is Fr. Emmerich Vogt, O.P. who gives a talk titled, “Living and Working the Steps with Scripture and the Saints.” He is Editor of The 12 Step Review and he shows how the steps are quite Catholic can be followed along side the saints and the bible to find the peace of Christ despite all our weaknesses.
Fr. Emmerich Vogt, O.P.
Sr. Marysia Weber
The fourth speaker was Sr. Marysia Weber of the Srs. of Mercy of Alma, Michigan who gave a talk titled, “Internet Pornography Addiction: Medium and Content Collide with the Human Brain.” She covers the sociological and neurological effects of the internet as a means to distribute pornography especially in regard to forming addictions and how these addictions can be overcome.
The fifth speaker is Dawn Eden who gives a talk titled, “Healing Sexual Wounds with the Help of the Saints," based on her book My Peace I Give You. She is also author of the Thrill of the Chaste, where she covers her experience of discovering the beauty of a chaste lifestyle. Here she reveals her exposure to sexual abuse as a child and how this led to a poor self image and a promiscuous lifestyle. She then relates how the saints helped her to see her own self worth in the eyes of God and so gave her the strength to live a Christian life.
Fr. Paul Scalia
The sixth speaker was Fr. Paul Scalia, Chairman Board of Directors of Courage and Chaplin for the Arlington, VA chapter. His talk was titled, “Fearing the Lord … and Not Being Afraid.” He makes the distinction between good fear of the Lord which is based on love and is a gift from God that brings us closer to Him verses a bad fear based on a false belief that God is an avenging God. Understanding this is key to developing a proper relationship with our all loving yet almighty God.
Dr. Bill Consiglio
The seventh speaker is Dr. Bill Consiglio who gives a talk titled, “All Things For Good.” He is Founder and Director of HOPE Ministries and gives a hope-filled message that despite our brokenness and sins we can trust that God has a providential plan for our good. As Romans 8:28 says, “We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.”
Paul gives his touching and powerful testimony of his deep involvement in the gay lifestyle and his difficult but grace filled, miraculous climb out of this deep darkness, ending by returning to the Catholic Church after forty years and living a Christian life with the help of his local Courage chapter.
Our final speaker was Fr. Paul N. Check, Executive Director of Courage International. He gave the closing address titled, “The Joy of the Lord Will Be Your Strength.” He unfolds this topic starting with Luke 10:21 “In that same hour he rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, ‘I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes; yea, Father, for such was thy gracious will.’”
Fr. Paul Check
Audio Only – For the second part of the eighth talk Robin gives her witty, joyful testimony of her journey from a gay lifestyle, that was not so gay, back to the Church. It all started when she unsuspectingly went into a Catholic Church to receive ashes.
"The Question that Haunts Us"