Conference Speakers

Drawing from a variety of experiences and perspectives, this event gathers leaders in the faith and human sciences who have shown prudence and charity in their work with souls. Attentive to the challenges of those who experience homosexual tendencies, the Church seeks to integrate their experiences and insights into authentic pastoral care.

Rev. Edward C. Benioff has been a priest for nine years for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Before he entered the seminary, he was a school teacher and coach. During his time in the priesthood, he has been a parish priest, Vocations Director, Director of New Evangelization, chaplain at Bishop Montgomery High School in Torrance, California, as well as, a chaplain at the University of Southern California. He currently is the pastor at Good Shepherd Parish in Beverly Hills, California. During his entire nine years in the priesthood, he has been the Courage Director for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. This is his favorite ministry because he is able to encounter the tender compassion of our God through serving the men and women of Courage. He is very happy to be a priest of the Roman Catholic Church.

Discussion Panel: An Invitation to Courageous Love (Part 5)
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

 

Fr. Philip Bochanski, a native of suburban Philadelphia, received the degree of Master of Arts in Theology from Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, Overbrook, and was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in May 1999. He has served in several parish assignments, as well as in special ministry as a high school theology teacher, a chaplain for cloistered nuns, and a spiritual director for seminarians.

Throughout his priestly ministry, Fr. Philip has been active in the work of adult faith formation, particularly in the catechesis of adult converts. An award-winning author, he has written and edited four books, five audio series, and numerous articles on various aspects of Church history, catechesis, and spirituality.

Fr. Bochanski served for five years as chaplain for the Courage Apostolate in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and in January 2015 was appointed Associate Director of Courage International.

Discussion Panel: An Invitation to Courageous Love (Part 5)
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Talk: Discerning One's Vocation Amid the Experience of Same-Sex Attractions
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 7:45 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

 

Most Rev. Michael Byrnes was ordained an Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Detroit on May 5, 2011, by Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron. Since 2004, Bishop Byrnes had served as Vice Rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, where he earned his Master of Divinity. Bishop Byrnes was ordained a priest by Cardinal Adam Maida in 1996. He later studied in Rome at the Pontifical Gregorian University where he earned a doctorate of Sacred Theology in 2003.

Bishop Byrnes, a native of Detroit, also served as pastor of Presentation/Our Lady of Victory Parish from 2004 until his ordination as bishop in 2011. Bishop Byrnes serves as episcopal vicar and regional moderator for the northeast region of the archdiocese.

Talk: Washed, Justified, Sanctified: Good News and Same-Sex Attraction
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Time: 10:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

 

Fr. Paul N. Check was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Bridgeport, Connecticut, in 1997. He holds an STB from the Gregorian University and an STL from the University of the Holy Cross, both in Rome. In his diocese, Fr. Check teaches fundamental moral theology to seminarians and sexual and medical ethics to permanent diaconate candidates. For twelve years, he taught a two-week course in moral theology in the “Gift of Faith” Syllabus for Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta. Fr. Check graduated from Rice University in 1981 with a BA in history. He served as an officer in the US Marine Corps for nine years prior to entering the seminary.

Since 2008, Fr. Check has served as the Executive Director of Courage International, for which he spends much of his time traveling throughout the United States and overseas making presentations to clergy about the Church’s teaching on homosexuality and her pastoral response. On January 1, 2017, he will become the Rector of St. John Fisher Seminary in the Diocese of Bridgeport.

Talk: Magisterial Teaching and Practical Experience: A Priest’s Reflection on Courage’s
Generation of Pastoral Care
Date:
Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

 

Andrew Comiskey, MDiv, has worked extensively with the healing of the sexually and relationally broken. He is founder and Director of Desert Stream/Living Waters Ministries, a multifaceted outreach to the broken. Andrew’s ministry grows both out of his own commitment to overcome homosexuality and his experience as a husband to Annette and father of four children.

He is author of Pursuing Sexual Wholeness (Creation House), Strength in Weakness (InterVarsity Press), Naked Surrender: Coming Home to Our True Sexuality (InterVarsity Press), and the Living Waters healing program. After more than three decades of ministry, Andrew still loves imparting healing to the entire body of Christ. He will be speaking with his wife, Annette.

Talk: Working Out SSA Together
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 10:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

 

Dr. John Cuddeback received a PhD in Philosophy from The Catholic University of America in 1997. He writes and lectures on various topics including virtue, culture, natural law, contemplation, and friendship. His book, True Friendship: Where Virtue Becomes Happiness, was republished in 2010.

A Third Order lay Dominican, he currently teaches in the Philosophy department at Christendom College. Dr. Cuddeback, an avid gardener and hunter, lives with his wife and six children in the Shenandoah Valley. He blogs on the topic of “a philosophy of household” at the blog Bacon from Acorns.

Talk: Forging True Friendships
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

 

Paul Darrow moved to Manhattan immediately after college and became an international fashion model and an atheist. His hedonistic lifestyle, glamorous careers, same-sex attraction, and ties to high society have provided him with invaluable insight about today’s alternative lifestyles.

Several years after becoming a Catholic, Paul was surprised to find himself being filmed as one of the subjects of the award-winning movie Desire of the Everlasting Hills, which has been distributed to the bishops at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. He has appeared on EWTN and is frequently a guest on radio programs. Whether giving presentations to high school students, priests and seminarians, penitentiary inmates, or Catholic groups across the United States and in Europe, Paul shares his unusual testimony in order to be a living example that God’s grace is more powerful than the greatest of human temptations.

Discussion Panel: Desire of the Everlasting Hills
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:45 p.m. 

 

Peter and Paulette Drozdowicz have been married for forty-three years and are the parents of two adult sons, the youngest of whom experiences same-sex attraction. They are retired from health care professions and live in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Since 2003, they have been participating in the annual Courage Conferences and have found much comfort and wisdom from them. Previously living in Madison, Wisconsin, they were motivated to establish an EnCourage group and worked in it for a number of years. After moving to La Crosse, they have cooperated with the efforts of the Diocese of La Crosse in establishing a new EnCourage group there.

Talk: A Mother and Father's Journey with the Son Who Experiences SSA
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

 

Jason Evert has traveled to six continents to bring the message of chastity to more than one million people over the past fifteen years, including World Youth Days in Spain and Australia. Jason earned a master’s degree in Theology and undergraduate degrees in Counseling and Theology, with a minor in Philosophy, at Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is a best-selling author of more than ten books, including Theology of the Body for Teens, Saint John Paul the Great, and How to Find Your Soulmate without Losing Your Soul.

He and his wife, Crystalina, are frequent guests on radio programs throughout the country, and their television appearances include MSNBC, Fox News, the BBC, and EWTN. Together, they run ChastityProject.com and lead an international alliance of young people who promote purity in more than forty countries.

Talk: Same-Sex Attractions, Gender, and the Theology of the Body
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 10:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

 

Dcn. Timothy Flanigan, MD, is Professor of Medicine in Infectious Diseases at The Miriam and Rhode Island Hospitals and Brown Medical School. He spearheaded the HIV Care Program at the Rhode Island Department of Corrections and has received NIH funding to develop improved treatments for HIV infection.

He has received recognition from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and from the HIV Medicine Association for his community-based work with HIV-infected men and women who are in prison and jail and for providing educational support for their children.

Talk: Providing Patient-Centered HIV and AIDS Care in the Era of Effective Treatment
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

 

Most Rev. José H. Gomez is the Archbishop of Los Angeles, the nation’s largest Catholic community. For more than a decade, Archbishop Gomez has been a voice of compassion and reason on moral and spiritual issues in American public life and culture. He has played a leading role in the Catholic Church’s efforts to promote immigration reform and is author of the 2013 book Immigration and the Next America: Renewing the Soul of Our Nation. He is currently a papal appointee to the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, and in November 2016 he will begin serving his second appointment as Chairman of the US Bishops’ Committee on Migration, a post he has held previously (2010–2013). He was a papal appointee to the 2012 Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization, and in 2015 he was selected to represent the US bishops at the Synod on the Family.

Archbishop Gomez speaks and writes often on issues in the Church and American society. His writings have been published in the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, as well as The Wall Street Journal, CNN.com, Vital Speeches of the Day, Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy, La Opinion, First Things, The New York Post, and elsewhere.

Opening Mass

 

Peter Herbeck is the Vice President and Director of Missions for Renewal Ministries. For the past thirty years, he has been actively involved in evangelization and Catholic renewal throughout the United States, Canada, Africa, and Eastern Europe. Peter is a cohost for the weekly television programs The Choices We Face and Crossing the Goal. He also hosts the daily radio show Fire on the Earth. He is the author of When the Spirit Comes in Power and When the Spirit Speaks, and he has produced CDs and booklets about discipleship and life in the Spirit.

Through articles, CDs, radio and television programs, and conference speaking, Peter has worked to provide Catholic leaders with the tools to effectively address the challenges in the fight to redefine marriage. Peter is involved with i.d.9:16, an outreach to Catholic young adults sponsored by Renewal Ministries.

Talk: Our Prophetic Moment
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.

 

Walt Heyer is a husband, father, and corporate executive who underwent gender reassignment surgery at the age of forty-two, going from man to woman. Eight years later, Walt went back to man again and has been restored to his male gender for more than twenty years now. Walt Heyer has a passion to help others who regret gender change.

Through his website, SexChangeRegret.com, Walt’s ministry reaches worldwide to 180 countries with 350,000 views last year. Walt continually receives e-mails from hurting people who are impacted personally by this topic. Walt has spoken at conferences in Italy, Sydney, and across the United States. His story has been featured in articles and documentaries in New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom, Russia, and Australia. Walt has appeared on worldwide news shows on CNN and Russia’s Channel One, and participated in scores of other radio and TV media events in just the past two years. Walt has written numerous articles for TheFederalist.com, ThePublicDiscourse.com, and DailySignal.com and has written and published five books. Walt’s mission is to raise public awareness about the incidence of regret and the tragic consequences suffered as a result.

Talk: Rethinking Transgenderism
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

 

Dr. Michael Horne is Director of Clinical Services for Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington. He received his doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the Institute for the Psychological Sciences (IPS) in 2009, where he specialized in child therapy and wrote his doctoral dissertation on violent video games and their impact on the player. Prior to pursuing his doctorate, Dr. Horne worked in television at KVR9 in Austin, Texas, and at PBS in Houston, Texas.

Dr. Horne has experience working in several Catholic mental health clinics including Catholic Social Services in Lincoln, Nebraska, and the Alpha Omega Clinic in Fairfax, Virginia. He has also had the opportunity to serve as a school counselor within the Diocese of Arlington. Dr. Horne and his wife, Kara, live in Fredericksburg, Virginia, with their three children.

Talk: Charity and Clarity
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

 

Patrick W. Lappert, MD, is a Permanent Deacon in the Diocese of Birmingham in Alabama. He has been married to Patrice Ann Oberst for thirty-four years. They have six grown children. Deacon Lappert was raised in a Jewish home, but lived most of his adult life as an atheist. He converted and was received into the Catholic Church in 1995.

Deacon Lappert was trained and board-certified first as a general surgeon, then as a plastic and reconstructive surgeon. He is a veteran of the Naval Service, retiring with the rank of Captain, USN, after serving for twenty-four years. In addition to being the Chief of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery for the Portsmouth Naval Hospital, he also served the Surgeon General, USN, as the Specialty Leader for Reconstructive Surgery. Dr. Lappert established the Craniofacial Reconstructive Surgery Unit, as well as the Wound Care Center for the largest medical-treatment facility in the world. Additionally, Dr. Lappert served for three years with the United States Marine Corps, flying in the F4 Phantom with VMFA-451.

Deacon Lappert divides his time between his private practice of plastic surgery and serving as deacon at Annunciation of the Lord Catholic Church in Decatur, Alabama. He is also chaplain for Courage in the Diocese of Birmingham.

Talk: Transgender Surgery and Christian Anthropology
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

 

Dr. Andrew W. Lichtenwalner is the Executive Director of the Secretariat of Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth at the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. He previously served the bishops in the areas of catechesis and the promotion and defense of marriage. He has spoken across the country on marriage and the family and regularly contributes to the radio show More to Life.

He has a PhD in Systematic Theology from The Catholic University of America and a Master of Arts in Theology from the University of Dallas. Dr. Lichtenwalner, his wife, and their three children reside in Maryland.

Talk: In Truth, Patience, and Mercy: Resources from the Bishops to Help Guide Pastoral
Formation and Pastoral Care

Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.

 

Jean C. Lloyd, PhD, is a teacher, writer, and happily married mother of two young children.

She loves to proclaim the goodness and mercy of God to all people, but particularly to those dealing with sexual brokenness, drawing from her own personal journey with same-sex attraction. Her writings on these issues are published online at The Public Discourse.

Talk: Essentials for Becoming a Life-Giving Safe Space in Ministry
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

 

Daniel Mattson lives in the Midwest, where he has a career in the performing arts. He is a member of the Courage Apostolate and is featured in the documentary Desire of the Everlasting Hills.

He has written about the Church’s good news concerning homosexuality in First Things, Crisis Magazine, Catholic Answers Magazine, as well as other publications. He is also a regular contributor to Chastity.com. He is a frequent guest on Catholic radio, appearing often on Catholic Answers Live, Kresta in the Afternoon, and Catholic Connection with Teresa Tomeo. He has been a featured speaker at the National Catholic Singles Conference, and recently debated the Church’s teaching on homosexuality at Bowling Green State University.

He is often invited to share his testimony with clergy, schools, and parishes, where one of his primary focuses is to promote the freedom the Church brings to the world from our cultural confusion concerning sexual identity. He blogs at LettersToChristopher.wordpress.com. Other writings may be found at JoyfulPilgrims.com. He is currently writing a book with the working title Why I Don't Call Myself a Gay Christian: One Man’s Journey to Freedom.

Discussion Panel: Desire of the Everlasting Hills
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:45 p.m. 

Talk: Captivated by Truth: Why the Church's Truth About Homosexuality Has Set Me Free
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 10:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

 

Fr. Steve Mattson is a priest of the Diocese of Lansing, Michigan. He is what is sometimes called a “revert” to the faith. He was raised in a faithful Catholic home, but his family left the Catholic Church after he graduated from high school.

After nearly twenty years as an Evangelical Protestant, Fr. Steve returned to the Catholic faith, and later felt the call to the priesthood. He attended seminary at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Illinois and was ordained in 2005. Fr. Steve holds a PhD in Education from Michigan State University, and he served as Superintendent of Schools and Chairperson of the Department of Education and Catechesis for the Diocese of Lansing from 2009-2015. Fr. Steve is now focused on parish ministry at the Church of the Resurrection, where he serves as pastor, a position he has held since July 2012. He is a passionate preacher who is uncompromising in his commitment to the Truth we find in Christ.

Talk: Preaching About SSA: The Surprising Good News
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 10:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. 

 

Dr. Margaret Harper McCarthy is an Assistant Professor of Theological Anthropology at the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family at The Catholic University of America, in Washington, DC. She is the editor of its online quarterly review, Humanum.

Together with Humanum, she publishes regularly in the international Catholic review Communio. Her book Recovering Origins: Adult Children of Divorce is forthcoming. Margaret is married and has three children.

Talk: The Emperor’s (New) New Clothes: A Look at the Logic of the (Not So) New “Gender Ideology”
Date:
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Time: 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

 

Dr. Jennifer Roback Morse is the founder of the Ruth Institute, a global nonprofit organization focused on creating a Christlike solution to the agony and injustice of family breakdown.

Dr. Morse was a campaign spokeswoman for California’s winning Proposition 8 campaign, defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman. She has authored or coauthored four books and spoken around the globe on marriage, family, and human sexuality. Her work has been translated into Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Polish, and Chuukese, the native language of the Micronesian Islands.

Her newest book is The Sexual Revolution and Its Victims. She earned her PhD at the University of Rochester and taught economics at Yale and George Mason Universities. Dr. Morse was named one of the “Catholic Stars of 2013,” on a list that included Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI. Dr. Morse and her husband are parents of an adopted child, a birth child, a goddaughter, and were foster parents for San Diego County to eight foster children.

Talk: Understanding the Sexual Revolution
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

 

Christina “Tina” Nair worked for the Courage Apostolate from May 1996 through June 2005, under Fr. John Harvey, OSFS, the founding director. She has a Master of Arts in Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville and has been a Courage member since 1994.

Tina is currently writing a doctoral proposal to research and compare the eschatologies of Catholic German theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar and Scottish minister and author George MacDonald.

Talk: Getting There - I Believe It's Worth the Trip
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

 

Dr. William Newton is Professor of Theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and Chair of Faculty at the university’s Austria Program. He has his PhD from the John Paul II Institute in Melbourne, Australia, a License in Sacred Theology from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium, and a master’s degree in Theological Sciences from the International Theological Institute, Austria.

Dr. Newton is originally from the United Kingdom, where he formerly worked in scientific research before taking up the study of theology. He taught previously for the International Theological Institute in Austria and continues to work with Maryvale Institute in Birmingham, United Kingdom. In 2012, he cofounded the Aquinas Institute of Ireland. He has published widely on various topics including human sexuality, social teaching, and bioethical issues. He lives in Austria with his wife Claire and their five children.

Talk: The Catholic Approach to Cooperation with Evil and It's Application to Gender-Related Issues
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

 

L. Martin Nussbaum, a partner of Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie, serves as cochair of its Religious Institutions Group. He represents and advocates for dioceses and a host of other ministries, including Courage International. In 2016 alone, he served as counsel of record or amicus counsel in four cases before the US Supreme Court (regarding the contraceptive/abortifacient mandate, school vouchers, the Blaine Amendment, and freedom of ecclesiastical tribunals); he and his team helped cause Secretary of State John Kerry to make a formal declaration of Christian genocide for the benefit of Christians in Syria and Iraq; and he won injunctive relief from the HHS contraceptive/abortifacient mandate for more than 740 Catholic and ten Protestant employers.

His clients have included numerous Catholic archdioceses and dioceses, various religious institutes, the Knights of Columbus, Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk, the National Association of Evangelicals, the Catholic Benefits Association, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Mr. Nussbaum is a consultant to the USCCB’s Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, a member of the National Diocesan Attorneys Association, and a member of Legatus. He writes and speaks frequently about religious liberty and serves as webmaster of the Religious Liberty Archive at ChurchStateLaw.com.

Mr. Nussbaum has been honored as a Chambers USA–First Amendment Litigation attorney, as Lawyer of the Year in Best Lawyers in America, and as Colorado Super Lawyer in Constitutional Law. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in theology from the University of Notre Dame where he graduated with top honors and a JD from the University of Texas School of Law. Mr. Nussbaum lives in Colorado Springs. He has been married for forty-two years to Catholic author Melissa Musick Nussbaum. They have five children and ten grandchildren.

Talk: Surviving the Sexual Revolution in Good Conscience
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.

 

Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska, on July 2, 1973. He was installed as the fourth Bishop of Phoenix on December 20, 2003. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he served as Bishop of Wichita, Kansas, after being ordained Coadjutor Bishop on April 20, 1999. Before serving in Wichita, he served as the Rector/President of the Pontifical College Josephinum, a Catholic seminary in Columbus, Ohio.

Since 1974, Bishop Olmsted has been a member of the Jesus Caritas fraternity of priests, and thus has been deeply influenced by the witness and wisdom of Charles de Foucauld and by the prayers and encouragement of many brother priests. For sixteen years, Bishop Olmsted lived in Rome, Italy, where he obtained a master’s degree in Theology, a doctorate in Canon Law, and worked more than nine years in the Secretariat of State of the Holy See. During the nine years of serving in the Holy See, he resided at the Pontifical North American College and assisted seminarians with spiritual direction. He received a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from St. Thomas Seminary College in Denver, Colorado.

Closing Mass

 

David Prosen, MA, graduated in 2006 with a Master of Arts in Counseling and a Certificate of Concentration in Christian Counseling from Franciscan University of Steubenville. Over the years, David has worked at several places and helped others on various issues including depression, anxiety, codependent behaviors, obtaining and maintaining chastity, and more.

Leader of the Steubenville chapter of Courage from 2004 to 2011, David has had several articles published in Lay Witness and Crisis Magazine and has given numerous presentations across the country on same-sex attraction from a Catholic perspective. In addition, David gave his testimony in Rome at the “Living the Truth in Love” conference in 2015, sponsored by Courage International, Ignatius Press, and the Napa Institute. David can also be seen in the documentary The Third Way: Homosexuality and the Catholic Church (Blackstone Films, 2014).

Discussion Panel: The Third Way
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. 

 

Dr. Susan Selner-Wright teaches philosophy at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver. Her academic specialty is the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas. She is the author of the Endow study guide on St. Thomas, Aquinas for Beginners.

It is her passion and pleasure to make the intellectual patrimony of the Church accessible to as many people as possible.

Talk: Christian Anthropology and the Gift of Chastity
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

 

Rilene Simpson was a self-proclaimed lesbian and atheist for most of her adult life.

She was one of three people profiled in the documentary film Desire of the Everlasting Hills, a story of redemption and conversion to Christ. Since returning to the Catholic faith in 2009, Rilene has shared her story at conferences, on radio, and on television. Through her compelling story, Rilene helps Catholics and other Christians understand the human dimensions of same-sex attraction, the truth in the Church’s teachings on human sexuality, and the hope and freedom found in the love of Christ.

Discussion Panel: Desire of the Everlasting Hills
Date: Monday, January 9, 2017 
Time: 8:15 p.m. – 9:45 p.m. 

 

Dr. Janet E. Smith is the author of Humanae Vitae: A Generation Later and of the Right to Privacy and the editor of Why Humanae Vitae Was Right: A Reader. Professor Chris Kaczor and Professor Smith coauthored Life Issues, Medical Choices: Questions and Answers for Catholics. She has recently edited, with Fr. Paul Check, Living the Truth in Love: Pastoral Approaches to Same-Sex Attraction.

Her articles have been published in many academic journals; she has been a regular columnist for the National Catholic Register and blogs on CatholicVote.com. She is serving a third term as a consulter to the Pontifical Council on the Family and serves the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity as a member of the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission III. She has received two honorary doctorates and several other awards for scholarship and service. Professor Smith has appeared on the Geraldo Show, Fox Morning News, CNN International, CNN Newsroom, and Al Jazeera and has done many shows for various series on EWTN. More than two million copies of her talk “Contraception: Why Not” have been distributed.

Talk: Why Language and Terminology Matter
Date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 
Time: 2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

 

Dr. Edward Sri is a theologian, author, and nationally known Catholic speaker who appears regularly on EWTN. He is the author of several Catholic best-selling books, including A Biblical Walk through the Mass and Walking with Mary. He is the host of the acclaimed film series Symbolon: The Catholic Faith Explained (Augustine Institute, 2014), which is being used in more than five thousand parishes.

He serves as Professor of Theology and Vice President of Mission at the Augustine Institute in Denver. Dr. Sri is a founding leader, with Curtis Martin, of FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students). He holds a doctorate from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome and resides with his wife, Elizabeth, and their eight children in Littleton, Colorado.

Talk: Who Am I to Judge? Sharing the Good News of Chastity in a Relativistic Culture
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.

 

Fr. D. Paul Sullins, PhD, is Research Professor of Sociology and Director of the Leo Initiative for Catholic Social Research at The Catholic University of America. He has written four books and more than one hundred journal articles and research reports on issues of faith and culture, including issues of sexual orientation or same-sex attraction.

He recently coedited, with Pierpaolo Donati, The Conjugal Family: An Irreplaceable Resource for Society (Rome: LEV Press, 2015). He has published five studies of children raised by same-sex parents, most recently “Invisible Victims: Delayed Onset Depression among Adults with Same-Sex Parents,” available here.

Talk: Changing the Conversation: How Recent Secular Research on Same-Sex Attracted Persons Supports Catholic Teaching
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 
Time: 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.