May 2018

The Month of Our Blessed Mother  

Fr. Bochanski concelebrates Mass in Fatima at the Chapel of the Apparitions 
Dear Courage and EnCourage friends, 

During this Marian month of May, our Executive Director, Fr. Philip Bochanski, had the opportunity to travel to Portugal, where he addressed priests from three dioceses (the Archdiocese of Lisbon and the dioceses of Setúbal and Braga) along with the Patriarch, Cardinal Manuel Clemente. During the trip, Father offered First Saturday Mass for the members of Courage and EnCourage and our loved ones at the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima. Mass was celebrated in the Chapel of the Apparitions, built on the very spot that the Blessed Mother appeared to the three shepherd children on the thirteenth of each month from May to October, 1917.

Also included in this edition of the newsletter is a 2002 message from our founding director, Fr. John F. Harvey, O.S.F.S., encouraging us to pray the Rosary, echoing Mary's message at Fatima. One of our summer conference speakers also invites us to discover the power of the Rosary.

And don't forget to check the upcoming events section for some great formation opportunities this summer.

For Mary's intercession,
The Courage Central Office

P.S. We sure hope you will be joining us for the Courage and EnCourage summer conference on July 12-15 (and, if you are a clergy member, for the clergy study day on July 11).  


Contents of this Newsletter 

New Chapters
Courage and EnCourage chapters 
 around the world

EnCourage Chapter:

More Courage and EnCourage chapters coming soon! 

Fr. James B. Lloyd, C.S.P., 
Celebrates 70 Years of Priesthood

Fr. James B. Lloyd, C.S.P.
On April 30 at the Church of St. Paul the Apostle in New York City, we celebrated the 70th anniversary of the ordination of the much-beloved Fr. James Lloyd, C.S.P., longtime Courage chaplain. Cardinal Timothy Dolan offered some beautiful words of thanks for Fr. Lloyd's loyal faithful service to the Courage apostolate. 

On Pinterest, his brother Paulist Fathers have assembled a nice collection of photos and articles highlighting Fr. Lloyd's lifelong ministry. Particularly beautiful is a piece he wrote for Our Sunday Visitor several years ago entitled "What Does it Mean to Be a Priest?"  


From Our Members 
Finding Courage 
as a Same-Sex Attracted,  Catholic Man

Courage's page for individuals 
 who experience same-sex attractions. 
A moving testimony from Courage member, Karl Miller, was recently published in America Magazine

"My heart and head longed for something vastly more authentic than a one-night stand. ... And then, about a decade ago, I was introduced to Courage. ... I see myself as a beloved son of the Father, one who happens to be attracted to men. ... I join my brothers on retreats, vacations and activities because that is what we do in Courage: We form loving, supportive and authentic friendships with others, and we grow through them."

We Find Freedom in the Teachings of the Church

Another Courage member, Hudson Byblow, made an insightful contribution as a guest blogger at the National Catholic Register. 

"We are not looking to change the teachings of the Church, for we have found freedom within them. We do not suppress our sexuality, but have found joy in pursuing virtue. ... [O]ur focus is on offering the beautiful gift of our sexuality to the Lord, while striving to grow in spiritual motherhood and spiritual fatherhood. This is not a life of misery and resentment, but rather a life of joyful surrender. And in that surrender, we have moved past the idea that 'being gay' is who we are... ." 

To Priests From Someone With Same-Sex Attractions

Avera Maria Santo, a young Courage member, speaks from her heart to the good priests who have served her so well: 

"Over the course of my time coming to terms with the same-sex attractions that I experience, while bathed in the good, true, and beautiful light of the Catholic Church, I've come face to face with some of the most incredible men that I've ever known. ...
The Catholic priests that I've had the pleasure of coming to know and love have done wonders in my life, and in the lives of many others. ... I am beyond thankful for those brave men who not only carry the spurn of the world on their shoulders, but also the prayers of the faithful that they shepherd so well.

"Please, don't be afraid to tell me that no love compares to God's, that nothing can take it's place.

"Please, don't be afraid to tell me that the design of the human person testifies the will of God.

"Please, don't be afraid to tell me the truth, even if it's difficult for me to hear.

"Be not afraid, my dear Fathers.  Your flock desperately needs you."

Dan Mattson's Book Tour in Italy 

Dan's presentation in Milan
From May 23 through May 30 our own Dan Mattson will be in Italy making six different presentations in venues as notable as the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross and the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum. His speaking tour coincides with the release of the Italian version of his book, Perché non Mi Definisco Gay  ( Why I Don't Call Myself Gay: How I Reclaimed My Sexual Reality and Found Peace).  Please keep Dan in your prayers, along with all who will be hearing his message and reading his book in Italian, that their hearts and minds will be open to see the goodness of the truths that Our Lord has given us through His Church.

We Want to Hear Your Story, Too! 

Fr. Harvey often said, "Our members are our best ambassadors."  Fr. Bochanski elaborates: "Courage and EnCourage members have a message to share with the world: Through their personal experience, they can testify that accepting and living the Gospel call to chastity leads to freedom, peace and joy in authentic relationships" (Crux). 

W e invite our members to submit their personal testimonies to be posted on the Courage website or shared on our social media. 

Here are a few guidelines to help you compose your story:
  • Maximum 1,000 words
  • May use a pseudonym or your real name
  • A nice photo of yourself may be included, but is not required 
Also, if you have the opportunity to write or speak in venues beyond the confines of Courage, we'd like to hear from you as you make your plans, as well as after the fact so we can learn of the fruits of your labor. 

You may send your testimony or questions to Ann Schneible at


Focus on Fr. John F. Harvey, O.S.F.S.  
Celebrating the 100th Birthday Jubilee of our Founding Director
A  Profile In Courage: Fr.  John F. Harvey, O.S.F.S.
This month's featured resource from Fr. Harvey

From Metanoia Films who produced the 50-minute documentary: 
Click to view trailer of A Profile in Courage

"This is the story of Fr. John F. Harvey, O.S.F.S., the man, the priest, and the founding director of the Catholic ministry, Courage. Learn about God's call on his life to minister to persons with same-sex attractions through his priestly ministry. Interviews with persons closest to Fr. Harvey and those who were there in the founding days of the Courage ministry reveal the loving hand of God at work in the Church through dedicated servants like Terence Cardinal Cooke and Fr. Harvey." 

In celebration of the centennial of Fr. Harvey's birth we will be viewing this film July at our  Courage & EnCourage Conference.

(Order form also includes several additional Courage DVDs)

Fr. Harvey on John Paul II and the Rosary 
"Let us, the Courage family, pray the rosary together..."  

Fr. John F. Harvey
In his monthly Director's Column in the December 2002 Courage newsletter, Fr. Harvey wrote an article to introduce the Year of the Rosary that had been declared by John Paul II. Fr. Harvey offered some scripture passages and meditations for each of the new Luminous Mysteries. Although the challenges and threats in the world today are different than those of twenty-six years ago, they continue to present the "need for intense prayer and penance."  Quoting Fr. Patrick Peyton, Fr. Harvey reminds us that "The family that prays together stays together," and then exhorts us: "Let us, the Courage family, pray the rosary together... ." 


Focus on Johnnette Benkovic 
2018 conference speaker to invite women to "Living Hope"

Johnette S. Benkovic
We will be blessed to have Johnnette Benkovic join us for the 2018 Courage & EnCourage conference ( brochure) to speak to women on "Living Hope." Johnnette is the founding president of Living His Life Abundantly International® and a prolific author. She is best known for her Women of Grace®  apostolate, the mission of which is to "transform the world, one woman at a time by affirming women in their dignity and vocation as daughters of God and in their gift of authentic femininity through ongoing spiritual formation."

Johnnette's apostolate has borne a plethora of fruits which you can explore at Her most recent book, The Rosary: Your Weapon for Spiritual Warfare, coauthored with Thomas Sullivan (creator of The Warrior's Rosary), is written for men and women alike, inspiring us to take up the rosary with greater fervency as a "vibrant and powerful intercessory tool in the hands of valiant spiritual warriors." 

Purchase The Rosary: Your Weapon for Spiritual Warfare

View an episode of Women of Grace on The Rosary book  

There is a distinction between what we do and who we are

Courage friend and psychologist, Dr. Michael Horne, Psy.D., wrote for the Truth & Love blog:

One way of understanding the difference between guilt and shame is that guilt is when we feel bad for something we have done. ... Shame, however, occurs when we view our actions or choices as being wrong, but then internalize that sense of wrongdoing to such a point that we start to view ourselves as fundamentally wrong or bad. ... However, there is a distinction between the person (who we are) and the action (what we do)." 

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Help us spread the word to your Spanish-speaking friends!
Courage Site in Spanish!

There is now a Spanish version of  Please use the language drop-down menu at the top right of each page to switch between Spanish and English. 

translationSpanish Translation at July Conference 

Brochure de la Conferencia   
en español
There will be simultaneous Spanish translation at the annual Courage and EnCourage conference in Philadelpia on July 12-15.  After they register, those who need translation should contact Rossana at for more information.  

Traducción al español en la Conferencia de Julio

Contaremos con traducción simultánea al español en la Conferencia Anual de Courage y EnCourage del 12 al 15 de Julio en Philadelphia. Después de inscribirse, quienes necesitan traducción deben comunicarse con Rossana a  para que obtengan más información.


Pastoral and Catechetical Resources
For clergy, parish and diocesan staff, catechists, 
mental/medical health care professionals, and other pastoral ministers

Courage friend, Anna Carter, the founder of Eden Invitation, recently wrote for the Truth & Love blog:

Here's the thing. The essential truths of our faith transcend time and place, but the people hearing them do not. Every generation is partially a product of culture. Each person is a mixed bag of genetics and decisions, both their own and those of others. Still, personal development occurs within a particular milieu, a fixed time and place with it's own attitudes, biases, and satellite channels. When fluid but faithful young people show up in your pews, at your Theology on Taps, or in your confessional, what do you need to know?." 

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Plan to attend October conference; view or read past conference talks. 

Truth & Love Conferences  offer sound, practical, and pastoral guidance on the topics of homosexuality and sexual identity, addressed to clergy, religious, and those lay faithful working in ecclesial ministry, as well as medical and mental health professionals.  Save the date for our 2018 conference, but if you can't attend personally, you can still view videos from past conferences or read compilations of essays written by the presenters. 

Truth & Love Conference 2018
"Proclaiming the Splendor of Truth with Love"
October 24-26, 2018
St. Thomas Seminary Conference Center in  Bloomfield, Connecticut 
Registration begins this summer.

Truth & Love Conference 2017 
January 9-11, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona
"Welcoming and Accompanying Our Brothers and Sisters with Same-Sex Attractions and Sexual  Identity Confusion"

Fr. Bochanski speaks on    
"Discerning One's Vocation    
Amid the Experience of Same-Sex Attractions"   
at the 2017 Truth & Love Conference 

Truth & Love Conference 2015
"Love One Another as I  Have  Loved You" 
October 2, 2015,  in Rome, Italy

Truth & Love Conference 2015
"Welcoming and Accompanying Our Brothers and Sisters with Same-Sex Attractions"
August 10-12, 2015, in   Plymouth, Michigan 


Ann Scheible, Courage's Director of Communications, contributed a valuable post to the Truth & Love blog about the importance of the sensitive yet accurate use of the vocabulary found in the Church's teaching on same-sex attractions: 

" In today's cultural climate, where it is becoming increasingly easy to (even inadvertently) close someone off to constructive dialogue with the wrong word, these terms present a significant pastoral and communications challenge. ... Has the time come for the Church to modify her language on the subject of homosexuality, taking into account the cultural context of our day? What would be the harm if it did? ...  Throughout his pontificate, Pope Francis has referred to the Church as a 'field hospital'. ... This evocative description gives context to the importance of the Church's terminology, and why sacrificing precision over accessibility would be imprudent at best." 

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by clicking "Update Profile" at the bottom of this email. 


San Antonio Courage Chapter Recollection Day
May 26, 2018, in San Antonio, Texas
"Seven Words of Jesus After His Resurrection" 
Speakers: Dcn. Tom and Mary Jane Fox

Theology of the Body for Teachers: Introductory Workshop
June 4-6, in  Cincinnati, Ohio

Special Topics in Theology of the Body for Teachers: 
Gender and Sexual Identity
June 7-8, in  Cincinnati, Ohio
Equips teachers to serve students with sexual identity confusion with both charity and truth. 

National Catholic Singles Conference 
June 8-10, in  Minneapolis, Minnesota
Hundreds of single Catholics seeking to live their faith come together for inspiring speakers, prayer, sacraments, and fellowship. Courage's own Hudson Byblow will speak on "Wrestling with Singleness: Expectations and Joy"
Flyer with discount for Courage members (register by May 31) 

Healing the Wound Between Man and Woman
June 30, 2018, St. Catherine of Siena Parish, New York City, New York 
With Andy Comiskey and Desert Stream Ministries.
How to bridge the gap between wounded men and women in their sexual brokenness, and renew a commitment to authentic love through Christ and His community. 

Midwest Living Waters Leadership Training Seminar
July 7-13, 2018, in Kansas City, Kansas
With Andy Comiskey and Desert Stream Ministries.
Equips attendees for effective ministry to the sexually and relationally broken. 

Pre-Conference Courage Clergy Study Day - No Charge
July 11, 2018, in Villanova, Pennsylvania  
(Archdiocese of Philadelphia)
Includes talks on Catholic anthropology and sexual ethics, psychology, preaching, pastoral care, and sexual identity confusion, plus a testimony.  
Registration  No charge!  Open to clergy and seminarians only.   
Conference brochure   If you can, stay for the whole conference (there is a registration fee for this event).  

Villanova University 
Courage/EnCourage Conference 2018
July 12-15, 2018 in Villanova, Pennsylvania
(Archdiocese of Philadelphia)
"Faithful to a Mission": 
Celebrating 100th Birthday of Our Founder

Courage/EnCourage Canada Shrines Pilgrimage
October 6-11, 2018 

Tr uth & Love Conference 
October 22-24, 2018, in Bloomfield, Connecticut 
(Archdiocese of Hartford)
For  clergy, religious, lay faithful who work in ecclesial ministry, medical and mental health professionals. 
Please share the dates with those who serve in your diocese and parish.   
Watch for details on  Truth & Love conference page.

Courage does not necessarily fully endorse all of the ideas included in resources that are not produced by Courage, but we still like to share items that we and our members have found to have considerable helpful content. 

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