Standing for the Church with Boldness, Zeal, and Love
In a time where the Truth of the Catholic Church is under relentless and sinister attack by a culture of relativism, atheism, hedonism, and secularism, men and women of faith need to join together, rise up, and defend the Beauty of Mother Church.
In a time when the faith and love of many of our fellow Catholics have grown cold, the Church needs modern missionaries committed to rebuilding the faith through knowledge and holy witness.
This is the heart of the Defending the Faith Conference.
Participants learn more than how to win arguments – they learn to win souls. They learn not only how to speak the truth, but how to pass on the faith. They are challenged and empowered to go and take the lead in the New Evangelization with holy boldness, zeal, and love. If you feel called to transform the Church by bringing the strength to defend the Church and witness to the people in your parish, then you will not want miss this opportunity for training, fellowship, and empowering.
2015 Conference Theme:
Always Forward! Siempre Adelante!
"Fear not for those who are with us are more than those who are with them. Then Elisha prayed... 'Oh Lord, open his eyes that he may see.'" 2 Kings 6:16-17
Our God is strong and our God is with us. These words are not sentimentality but the foundation for our lives of courage and virtue. Come discover anew how awesome and beautiful living a courgageous life for Christ can be.
Held on the campus of Franciscan University in Steubenville, OH
Time: Conference begins with an Early Bird Session on Friday, July 24 from 2:00-4:00 p.m.; general sessions begin Friday at 7:00 p.m. and conclude on Sunday, July 26 by 12:30 p.m. (includes closing Sunday Mass)
Early Bird: $120 per person (by April 17th)
Regular: $145 per person
Priests: free registration (housing and meal plan charges still apply) Religious, or those 18-30 years old: $70 per person
Meal plan: $63 per person (includes 6 meals)
Housing: $90 per person (for shared room with A/C); $70 per person (for shared room without A/C); $100 per person (for private room without A/C)
Registration Information: Registration opens January 19, 2015
For more information, please call us 1-800-437-8368
Dr. Scott Hahn is the author or editor of over forty books; his most recent titles are Evangelizing Catholics, Angels and Saints, and Consuming the Word. He holds the Fr. Michael Scanlan Chair of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he's taught since 1990. He is also the founder and president of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology. Dr. Hahn graduated from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary with his master’s in divinity and received his PhD in theology from Marquette University. Dr. Hahn has been married to Kimberly since 1979. They live in Steubenville Ohio and have six children and eleven grandchildren.
Bishop Gainer was appointed Bishop of Harrisburg by his Holiness Pope Francis on January 24, 2014. He studied at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia, graduated summa cum laude with a licentiate degree in Canon Law, and later was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Allentown on May 19, 1973. Bishop Gainer has served in parish, campus ministry, marriage and family, and tribunal positions. During his priesthood, he served as Secretary of Catholic Life and Evangelization for the Diocese of Allentown where he supervised 14 diocesan offices promoting the works of spiritual renewal and evangelization. Currently, he serves on the USCCB Committee on Catholic Education and Committee for Canonical Affairs and Church Governance.
The Most Reverend Bernard Hebda was ordained for the Diocese of Pittsburgh in 1989. He held parish and Chancery assignments in the Pittsburgh Diocese until his appointment in 1996 to the staff of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts in Rome. In 2003, he became Under-secretary of the Council. In Rome, he also served as adjunct spiritual director at the Pontifical North American College, and confessor for the postulants of the Missionaries of Charity. In 2009 Pope Benedict XVI named him the Fourth Bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord, and in 2013 Pope Francis named him Coadjutor Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Newark. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard University; a Juris Doctor degree from Columbia University School of Law; and Bachelor of Sacred Theology and Licentiate in Canon Law degrees from Pontifical Gregorian University.
The Most Reverend Bishop Jeffrey Monforton was born in Detroit, Michigan and is the eldest of three sons. He holds a licentiate in sacred theology, as well as a doctorate in sacred theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. In 1994, he was ordained to the priesthood. In 2006, Cardinal Adam Maida named him the twelfth rector of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, a post he held until 2012. Under his leadership the seminarian population at Sacred Heart has grown to the largest it has been in 38 years. Bishop Monforton was named the fifth bishop of Steubenville by Pope Benedict XVI on July 3, 2012.
Mike Aquilina is the author and editor of more than 40 books on Catholic history, doctrine, and devotion. He has hosted many television series on EWTN, and he was a regular panelist on Catholic Familyland Network’s Weekly Roman Observer. Mike also contributes to Catholic radio and to Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity. He is the past editor of New Covenant and Pittsburgh Catholic, and his work has appeared in periodicals throughout the world. His books include The Fathers of the Church, The Mass of the Early Christians, and The Resilient Church. Mike and his wife, Terri, live in the South Hills of Pittsburgh with their six children, who are the subjects of his book Love in the Little Things.
Patrick Coffin is a national speaker, author, apologist and the host of Catholic Answers Live. He has interviewed a wide array of leaders and personalities, including presidential candidates, Academy Award-winners, professional athletes such as Philip Rivers, Grammy nominees, papal biographer George Weigel and scores of others. Patrick Coffin is also the co-founder of Immaculata Pictures, an indie film company. (http://www.immaculatapictures.com). Born in Halifax, Coffin holds advanced degrees in philosophy and theology from McGill University in Montreal and Franciscan University of Steubenville. He has appeared on the FOX Channel, Comedy Central, One America News, The Sun News Network (Canada) and is a frequent guest on EWTN. As a journalist, his writing has appeared in National Review Online, Inside the Vatican, Spero News, The National Catholic Register, The Toronto Star, New Oxford Review, St. Austin Review. His column on classic movies, The Cinephile, is published in The Catholic World Report. He lives with his family in San Diego, CA.
Kimberly has been married to Scott since 1979 and became a Catholic during the Easter Vigil of 1990. She has completed a book with Scott on their journey to the Catholic Church, titled Rome Sweet Home: Our Journey to Catholicism. In addition to Rome Sweet Home, Kimberly's other books include Life-Giving Love: Embracing God's Beautiful Design for Marriage and the 4-book and DVD series on Proverbs 31 including Chosen and Cherished, Graced and Gifted, Beloved and Blessed, and Legacy of Love. She holds an MA in theology from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Kimberly and Scott have six children and have eleven grandchildren.
Ulf and Birgitta Ekman founded Word of Life, a non-denominational Charismatic church in Uppsala, Sweden where Ulf was its Senior Pastor for 30 years. In May of 2014, after 15 years of soul searching concerning the Catholic faith, they converted and joined the Church. Ulf has held conferences and leadership seminars in many nations including the USSR and India. He founded bible schools and a Theological Seminary, hosted a TV-show aired in many nations, and has written more than 40 books & booklets which have been translated into over 30 languages. Birgitta was editor of a Missions magazine, authored of 5 books for children, and founded a humanitarian foundation to help children in India in 1998. The foundation supports schools in poor areas, feeds needy children and sponsors daycare centers for children of prostitutes. They presently live in Sweden and have four sons and seven grandchildren.
Jennifer Fulwiler is a writer, speaker, and the host of The Jennifer Fulwiler Show on SiriusXM radio. Her memoir, Something Other than God, was released in April 2014 and was listed among Amazon.com’s top 20 bestselling memoirs. She’s been a guest a variety of national television and radio shows, and was the subject of a reality show called Minor Revisions She lives with her husband and six young children in Austin, Texas. Her blog, ConversionDiary.com, has thousands of daily readers and has won in the categories of Best Written Blog, Best Blog by a Woman, and People’s Choice Blog in the Catholic New Media Awards.
Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC, is a member of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception and author of the bestselling books, Consoling the Heart of Jesus, 33 Days to Morning Glory, and the new book 'You Did it to Me': A Practical Guide to Mercy in Action. When he is not traveling, Fr. Michael lives and works on Eden Hill in Stockbridge, Mass., home of the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy.
Dr. Peter Kreeft is a professor of philosophy at Boston College and at the King’s College (located in the Empire State Building) in New York City. A regular contributor to several Christian publications, Dr. Kreeft is in wide demand as a speaker at conferences and has authored over 75 books, including Handbook of Christian Apologetics, Christianity for Modern Pagans, Making Sense Out of Sufffering, Back to Virtue, Refutation of Moral Relativism, and Fundamentals of the Faith. His newest works, published Fall 2014, are Letters to an Atheist: Wrestling with the Faith and 100 Greatest Philosophers: Socrates Children.
Patrick Madrid is a life-long Catholic. He hosts the new, 3-hour daily “Patrick Madrid Show” on Immaculate Heart Radio and, before launching that show, hosted the top-rated “Right Here, Right Now” Show. He is also a frequent guest and occasional guest-host on the “Catholic Answers Live” radio program. He has authored or edited 22 books on Catholic themes, including Why Be Catholic? Search and Rescue, Does the Bible Really Say That? And the acclaimed Surprised by Truth series. Patrick worked at Catholic Answers for eight years, where he served as vice president. A veteran of a dozen formal, public debates with Protestant ministers, Mormon leaders, and other non-Catholic spokesmen, Patrick has presented countless seminars on Catholic themes. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in business at the University of Phoenix, as well as a B.Phil. in philosophy and an M.A. in dogmatic theology at the Pontifical College Josephinum (Columbus, OH). He’s currently engaged in post-graduate studies toward a doctorate in Church history. Patrick has served as an adjunct professor of theology at Franciscan University of Steubenville and currently teaches as an adjunct professor of theology in the graduate theology program at Holy Apostles College & Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut. Patrick and his wife Nancy have been blessed with 11 children and 16 grandchildren. They reside in the Diocese of Columbus. His website is www.patrickmadrid.com.
Matt Maher recently made the transition from full-time ministry at his home church in Mesa, Arizona, to life as a respected worship leader with an international platform. He has developed a reputation as a versatile songwriter, always eager to build bridges between communities and inspire others to creative excellence. Matt’s latest album was released in 2013, and his life experiences have shaped his music. He says, “It has given me a heart for two things: one is to interact with the culture more and another is to be a vehicle for unity…. My mandate as a Christian is not to retreat, but to be a light. In a post-Christian society, everybody is called to be a missionary wherever we are.”
Taylor Marshall PhD is a former Episcopalian priest and the President of the New Saint Thomas Institute, an initiative offering theology classes to over 1,100 students in 24 nations. He is the author of The Crucified Rabbi, The Catholic Perspective on Paul, The Eternal City, Thomas Aquinas in 50 Pages, and Saint Augustine in 50 Pages. He appears regularly on Catholic Answers, EWTN, and Relevant Radio. He has a highly rated podcast “The Taylor Marshall Catholic Show”. He and his wife Joy have seven children (four boys and three girls) and make their home in Dallas. Dr. Taylor blogs at taylormarshall.com and has 98,702 followers.
Emily Stimpson is a freelance Catholic writer based in Steubenville, Ohio. Her books include The American Catholic Almanac: The Patriots, Saints, Rogues, and Ordinary People Who Changed America (Image, 2014), These Beautiful Bones: An Everyday Theology of the Body (Emmaus Road, 2013), and The Catholic Girl’s Survival Guide for the Single Years (Emmaus Road, 2012). A contributing editor to Our Sunday Visitor and Franciscan Way Magazine, her writing has also appeared in First Things, Touchstone, the National Catholic Register, Lay Witness, Catholic Digest, and elsewhere. Honored by both the Catholic Press Association and the Associated Church Press, Stimpson holds a BA from Miami University of Ohio and did her graduate work in theology at Franciscan University. She is a frequent blogger on food, faith, and hospitality at www.thecatholictable.com.
Bob Rice is an associate professor of catechetics at Franciscan University, and he ministers to over 10,000 people each year through hosting conferences, giving talks, teaching workshops, leading worship, and performing original music. Bob’s creative use of humor, personal stories, and extensive knowledge of the faith have made him an internationally sought-after speaker for people of all ages. He lives in Steubenville with his wife, Jennifer, and seven children.