Fruitful Truth & Love Conference 

Dear Courage and EnCourage family,

In October we were blessed to be able to host our fourth Truth & Love Conference for clergy, religious, and professionals who minister to persons who experience same-sex attractions or who have questions about sexual identity. We met in the Archdiocese of Hartford where we experienced the colors and tastes of autumn in New England. The conference was centered on the theme, "Proclaiming the Splendor of Truth with Love," drawing from Pope St. John Paul's prophetic 
Veritatis Splendor, on the occasion of 25th anniversary of this document. Providentially, the conference began on October 22, the feast of this great saint who has left such a magnificent legacy to us in his understanding of Christian anthropology and moral theology. 

Our speakers included experts in the fields of theology, philosophy, and the sciences as well as witnesses who spoke from personal experience about the peace, joy, and freedom they have found in living the gospel call to chastity and authentic love. Not only was the conference a unique educational opportunity for the participants, but it also provided a chance to build relationships and network with like-minded fellow laborers in our Lord's field.  

In this newsletter we will feature some of the conference highlights as well as the latest news and some outstanding new resources. Be sure to check the Upcoming Events section, as we have added several new opportunities for you. 
God bless you, 
Courage Central Office 

Truth & Love Conference booklet (schedule, speakers, talks)


Contents of this Newsletter 

Truth & Love Conference Highlights
Praise for Conference on Register Radio
"They spoke with clarity ... with love"

Register Radio's Jeannete DeMelo interviews Tom Wehner
Tom Wehner, the managing editor of the  National Catholic Register , was in attendance at the Truth & Love Conference. He later shared his favorable impressions in an interview on Register Radio

It was great to hear from the different speakers from a diversity of angles. ... There were witness talks, there was scripture, there was Church teaching, the catechism. They all resonated with me greatly with an affirmation of what it means to be a man and a woman today. One of the big things was that they spoke with clarity -- in these times of confusion over what it means to be a man or a woman -- with love. It was just a great moment to be there with the hundreds of attendees who were there.

Courage Director's Stirring Keynote Address
'No One Lives on a Bridge': How to Accompany Those With Same-Sex Attraction

Fr. Philip Bochanski, Executive Director
Fr. Philip Bochanski delivered a powerful message to kick off the first full day of the conference. The National Catholic Register published his talk in its entirety. "We have to begin ... with a determination to speak consistently, clearly, and with great charity and compassion, about the truths of the faith, and especially about the truth of the human person," Fr. Bochanski said. 

Building bridges to those who are marginalized -- because of their experience of same-sex attraction, or of gender dysphoria, or for any other reason -- is the responsibility of every pastoral minister. But no one lives on a bridge. ... We build bridges to those whom we love so that we cannot only hear their story, "starting from their situation" as Pope Francis advises, but also to be able to present the whole truth, to tell the rest of the story, to answer their questions and address their desires in the light of the Gospel. The Church builds bridges not as permanent sites of compromise, of meeting in the middle without any need for change or growth, but because welcome and accompaniment in the name of Christ provides a clear, compassionate message: "Come close; we are friends, and I have something to tell you, to which I want you to respond, because I believe it will transform your life."

Conference Covered on Truth & Love's Social Media

Day 2 of conference 
 captured on Facebook
See photos, quotes, and other highlights of the conference on Truth & Love's Facebook and Twitter pages from October 22-24 and surrounding dates. 

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Focus on Fr. John F. Harvey, O.S.F.S.  
Celebrating the 100th Birthday Jubilee of our Founding Director
Man of God, man of the Church, man of charity 
Past director of Courage pays tribute to founding director

In his talk at the Courage conference at Villanova University this summer, Fr. Paul N. Check, who succeeded Fr. Harvey as the Executive Director of Courage, gave a beautiful tribute to him, examining Fr. Harvey's legacy.

Fr. Harvey was a great student of St. Augustine. ... In The City of God, Augustine speaks about two things that are essential for Christians to live in a fallen world. One is realism -- we have to see the world as it is -- and the second is hope -- the way the world is is not the final word. Those were qualities of Fr. Harvey's character, and I want to look under three rubrics tonight ... at Fr. Harvey's realism and hope: Fr. Harvey, man of God; Fr. Harvey, man of the Church; and Fr. Harvey, man of charity. 

Courage/EnCourage News 

Pray for the Faithful Departed of Courage/EnCourage  

As the Church dedicates the month of November to remembering all of her faithful departed, let us pray in particular for the souls of our deceased chaplains, members of Courage and EnCourage, and special friends of the apostolate. You may use this list to pray for them by name. 

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, 
And let perpetual light shine upon them. 
May they rest in peace. 

View list of faithful departed of Courage and EnCourage

Divine Mercy University Offers Tuition Discount
A new collaboration with Courage saves you 20-30%! 

From our friends at Divine Mercy University

Divine Mercy University understands your commitment to faith and service. We would like to offer a tuition reduction to those associated with Courage, EnCourage, and the Truth and Love Conferences. We hope the Holy Spirit is drawing more people to serve the mental health needs of people with same-sex attraction. 

Our university is committed to mental health rooted in the Catholic understanding of the human person, the family, and society [ more about DMU] . Our goal is to help ensure as many parishes, communities, and dioceses as possible have excellent mental health support. 
  • In view of this goal we would like to offer Courage a 20% tuition reduction for those who are admitted to our programs. 
  • Those admitted to the Masters Degree in Psychology or the Master's Degree in Clinical Counseling for the January 2019 cohort will receive 30% tuition reduction. 
  • Clergy and employees of Courage may be eligible for additional reduction. 
Programs offered at Divine Mercy University:
Contact Divine Mercy University admissions today at 703-416-1441 or enroll.divinemercy.edu. Apply  by the end of November for the spring session beginning on January 9. Be sure to tell them Courage sent you!   

Orange County, CA, Chapter Celebrates 25 Years! 

The Orange County, California, Courage chapter will be celebrating their 25th anniversary on December 15 with a potluck dinner and evening prayer. This group is the longest continually running Courage chapter on the west coast. Fr. Enrique Sera has been the chaplain all these years. Thank you, Fr. Sera, for your 25 years of faithful service!  

If any Courage or EnCourage members are going to be in the area on that day, the chapter would love to have you join them. For details, please send an email to  CourageCA.OC@gmail.com.

Courage/EnCourage Advisory Council

As Father Bochanski mentioned at the annual conference, Courage has established an Advisory Council made up of members of Courage and EnCourage from different parts of the country. The plan which the Board of Directors approved for the Council describes its mission in these words: 

"The Courage and EnCourage Advisory Council will comprise twelve members of Courage and EnCourage chosen by the executive director, as well as several members of the Courage Office staff who will serve ex officio, and will meet four times a year
  • to discuss the needs of the Courage and EnCourage community;
  • to share ideas for spreading and deepening the work of the apostolate;
  • to provide feedback about initiatives proposed by the Courage Office; and
  • to take the lead in, and identify other collaborators for, Courage and EnCourage projects."  
The current membership of the Advisory Council is listed below. Members and friends of the apostolate are always welcome to suggest topics for the attention of the Advisory Council, either by contacting the Courage Office directly, or by communicating with one or more of the council members personally. To protect the privacy of our council members, their contact information is not listed, but messages sent to the Courage Office will be forwarded to them as requested. The members of the Advisory Council serve "at large" and represent all the members of the apostolate rather than particular constituencies, but their status as members of Courage or EnCourage, and the part of the country where they live, are provided for your reference.

Julie A., Courage
Jim B., Courage (Staten Island, NY)
Peggy C., EnCourage (Huntington, NY)
Peter and Paulette D., EnCourage (LaCrosse, WI) 
Rossana G., EnCourage (Courage office)
Tina N., Courage (Courage office)
Rilene S., Courage (San Jose, CA)
Karl M., Courage (Phoenixville, PA)
Yvonne M., Courage (Long Island, NY)
Ken M., Courage (Brooklyn, NY)
Angelo S., Courage (Courage office)
Kevin S., Courage (Louisville, KY)
Mary W., EnCourage (Cleveland, OH)
Steve Y., Courage (Alexandria, VA)
New Chapters
Courage and EnCourage chapters   
 around the world

Courage Chapter:


New Must-Have Book for Parents, Teachers, Clergy
Made This Way: Prepare Kids to Face Today's Tough Moral Issues 

From Catholic Answers: 

In Made This Way: How to Prepare Kids to Face Today's Tough Moral Issues Leila Miller and Trent Horn give parents [...] crucial tools and techniques to form children with the understanding they need -- appropriate to their age and maturity level -- to meet the world's challenges. [...] [The] right way to live is rooted in the way we're made. God's design for human nature is a blueprint or owner's manual for moral living that any child can grasp through reason and apply to modern controversies over sex, marriage, life ... and the quest for human fulfillment. [...] [L]earn how to give your kids a firm foundation on which to build a life of moral clarity and happiness.

Topics include:
  • Sex Outside of Marriage
  • Same-Sex Marriage
  • Abortion
  • Pornography
  • Transgenderism
  • Homosexuality and more
Order your copy of Made This Way   (See contents on Amazon

Purchase a case of 20 for only $5 each  Then sell or give away to EnCourage parents, family members, fellow parishioners, parish staff, teachers and more!

Talks from Villanova Conference Now Online 

Did you miss the conference this summer?  Do you wish you could hear your favorite speaker one more time? Select talks and homilies are now available on the Courage International Vimeo channel. Click "Load More" at the bottom of the page to see Archbishop Chaput's encouraging homily and talks from previous conferences. 

Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix addressed the men attending the conference, highlighting his apostolic exhortation to the men of his diocese,  Into the Breach. He addressed the following questions:  1) What does it mean to be a Catholic man?  2) How does a Catholic man love?  3) Why is fatherhood so crucial for every man?

Click to view Bishop Olmsted's talk for men on "Into the Breach" 

Courage Online Store Open for Business!
Invited to Courageous Love video series marked down 20%! 

Order  Invited to Courageous Love  today!
To visit the new store go to CourageRC.org > Resources > Shop. Click the item in which you are interested for details and to purchase. Check back as more items will be added soon. 

Be sure to pick up a copy of Invited to Courageous Love, now reduced to $40. This  5-part catechetical film series, with included study guide, will lead viewers to a deeper understanding of the lives of people who experience same-sex attractions (SSA). Watch as men and women give their personal testimonies about living with SSA and parents share their experience of loving someone who identifies as LGBT. You will also hear experts speak with clarity and charity on these important topics: Christian anthropology, medical and social sciences, and pastoral care. This DVD set is a great addition to your Courage or EnCourage library and makes a perfect gift for a favorite priest or catechist. 

Fr. Bochanski Featured in Letters from the Synod
"Affirming the Reality of the Redemption"

Fr. Philip Bochanski,
Executive Director
Our Executive Director, Fr. Philip Bochanski, was invited "[i]n the light of his distinctive pastoral experience"  to contribute to the Letters From the Synod   series in First Things

Father's response was an encouraging reminder to Synod fathers of how they are uniquely positioned to "affirm [young Catholics'] zeal and innate desire for greatness; to advise them from experience of both the guideposts and the pitfalls on the path that lies ahead of them; and to challenge them to choose heroic virtue and the self-sacrifice that must accompany it, confident that the age-old truths of faith are not burdensome and restrictive but life-giving and truly liberating."

He concluded: 

The Synod fathers, together with the pope, must challenge young Catholics, including those who experience same-sex attractions, to reject labels, politics, and slogans in favor of the solidarity and holy friendship that come from our common identity as sons and daughters of God, our universal vocation to pursue heroic virtue because we bear his image and likeness, and our shared striving to be reborn and remade according to the mind of Christ. Exhortation, not accommodation, will save the Church for the future. Heroic witness to the truth, not revision of it, will draw the youth of the world to their place in the Kingdom.

(scroll down to view)


Courage Latino
Courage Latino Conference 
November 16-18 in Mexico City


Encuentro Courage Latino 
November 16-18, 2018, in Mexico City

Courage Day of Recollection
December 1, 2018, in New York City, New York

Courage "Christian Manhood" Men's Retreat
December 7-9, 2018, in Southern California

Orange County Courage 25th Anniversary Celebration 
December 15, 2018, in Orange County, California
Courage and EnCourage members welcome. 
Information:  CourageCA.OC@gmail.com

Gender Matters: Fighting for a New Generation
January 19, 2019, in Denver, Colorado
With Andy Comiskey and Desert Stream Ministries. 
Hosted by Archdiocese of Denver. 
Discover together the compassion and clarity of Jesus towards persons facing gender and sexual identity issues.

Courage Men's Retreat
January 25-27, 2019, in Stamford, Connecticut
Information: Office@couragerc.org

West Coast Living Waters Leadership Training Seminar
February 2-8, 2019, in Calabasas, California 
With Andy Comiskey and Desert Stream Ministries
Equips attendees for effective ministry to the sexually and relationally broken

Courage/EnCourage Spiritual Conference 
April 27, 2019, in Somers, New York 
Theme: "Divine Mercy and Families"
Speakers: Fr. Jonathon Morris and Fr. Gerald Murray, JCD
Information: Flyer or EnCourageNY.com  

Courage Women's Retreat
May 30 - June 2, 2019, near Allentown, Pennsylvania
Save the date. Details coming later. 

Courage/EnCourage Annual Conference
July 18-21, 2019, in Mundelein, Illinois 
Save the date. Details coming later. 

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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