Message from Our Executive Director
Inspiration, updates, and an appeal
Dear friends,

In the wee hours of the morning of the first Good Friday, every bishop and priest in the Church abandoned Christ. One of them found his way back a few hours later, and was with the Lord at the foot of His Cross. The others hid behind locked doors in fear and shame, until that Sunday evening, when “Jesus came and stood among them” (Jn 20:19). Perhaps they expected Him to be wrathful, to reproach them for their lack of faith and their shameful behavior. Instead, He greeted them with words that echo through the ages of the life of the Church:

“Peace be with you.”
Crucifix from the interior of the
Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris
In the rest of his letter, Courage Executive Director, Fr. Philip Bochanski, encourages us to find hope in Christ in the midst of crisis in the Church. He gives concrete examples of how the work of Courage, including some new endeavors, is part of the solution. Finally he invites us to support that work.

"If the Resurrection teaches us anything, it is that Christ keeps His promises, and will stop at nothing to save, heal and restore us." 
"Your support of the apostolate is as vital as ever, … and so I am asking you to prayerfully consider making a contribution to support our work. …May God reward your generosity with many blessings" (Fr. Bochanski).
  • Conference in Mundelein on July 18-21, on “Courageous Friendship"
  • Focus on Conference Speaker: Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC
  • Focus on Conference Speaker: David Prosen

  • Fr. Bochanski's EWTN Homily Prepares Us for Holy Week 
  • Update Your Profile for Targeted News
  • Fr. Bochanski on Women of Grace on Same-Sex Attraction
  • New Courage Chapters
  • Pastor Initiates Second Courage Chapter in Providence, RI

  • The "Pirate Nun's" Dramatic Impact on One Man's Life
  • "Same-Sex Attracted Man Tells Redemption Story"

  • EnCourage Parents and Women at the Foot of the Cross 
  • Sorrowful Mysteries for EnCourage Members

  • Annual Courage & EnCourage Conference (Conferencia internacional anual de Courage y EnCourage) 
  • Courage-Latino Spanish April E-Newsletter in Spanish (Courage-Latino boletín electrónico de abril)

  • Come for Pre-Conference Clergy Study Day on July 17
  • Stay for the Courage Conference

  • Lots of opportunities for Courage, EnCourage, and those in ministry
Conference Registration Now Open!
“Courageous Friendship: Inspiring Hope and Renewal”
2019 Courage & EnCourage Annual Conference

July 18–21, 2019 (Thursday-Sunday)
Clergy Study Day on July 17 (Wednesday)
University of Saint Mary of the Lake
Mundelein, Illinois

Come join the Courage and EnCourage family
for a revitalizing four days of
prayer, inspiration, and fellowship in Christ
with friends, old and new.

For simultaneous Spanish translation, contact  oficina@couragerc.org

Focus on Conference Speaker: Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC
Learn from St. Thérèse: You can be a saint, too!
One of our conference speakers this year is well-known author and speaker, Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC. Fr. Gaitley is the Director of Evangelization for the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception and Director of Formation for the Marian Missionaries of Divine Mercy. He authored the bestselling books 33 Days to Morning Glory, Consoling the Heart of Jesus, and 33 Days to Merciful Love .
Fr. Gaitley's presentation at the conference, "St. Thérèse: The Way of Merciful Love," will summarize the Little Way of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, which gives hope to all “Little souls,” not only that we can become saints but great saints. We will discover why St. Therese is one of the most popular saints in the history of the Church. Related content can be found in Fr. Gaitley's book, 33 Days to Merciful Love.

Focus on Conference Speaker: David Prosen
Our real needs: truth, authentic love, and hope
David Prosen, who previously co-authored Mom ... Dad, I'm Gay , will be speaking this year to EnCourage members, drawing content from his new book, Accompanying Those with Same-Sex Attractions: A Guide for Catholics, published by Our Sunday Visitor, with a foreword by Fr. Bochanski. David speaks, from personal experience, about what a person with same-sex attractions finds most helpful from family and the Church: truth, authentic love, and hope. This book is an excellent resource for clergy members and others involved in ministry, as well as for family members.

You may recognize David from his appearance in the film, The Third Way: Homosexuality and the Catholic Church . He has also written and spoken extensively on the topic of same-sex attractions from a Catholic perspective. You can learn more about him at DavidProsen.com.
Courage News
Fr. Bochanski's EWTN Homily Prepares Us for Holy Week
Fr. Bochanski preached the homily for the EWTN televised Mass on Friday of Fifth Week of Lent. Father encourages us, in spite of any failings in our Lenten observances, to open ourselves to fully receive the grace and mercy available to us in the salvation Jesus won for us through His Passion. "Don't keep Him at the door, out of shame or out of pride, but … let Him in—all the way in—so that He can make His home with us."

Update Your Profile for Targeted News
Don't miss messages directed to your interests
Sign up for emails directed specifically to Courage men, Courage women, EnCourage, clergy, Courage-Latino, and others. Please include state, country, and diocese to be notified of local events. Go to the bottom of this email and click "Update Profile". 
Fr. Bochanski on Women of Grace
" Same-Sex Attraction: The Courage to Face the Truth"
Fr. Bochanski joined Johnnette Benkovic Williams for a live call-in episode of EWTN's Women of Grace to discuss the subject of same-sex attractions. Here is just one quote from a show packed with terrific content for Courage and EnCourage members as well as for those who care for them:

"People perceive [friendship] like it's a consolation prize, a second best love, because people have a thousand Facebook friends, but they don't talk to anybody in real life. But friendship is a fierce and loyal love when it's what it ought to be. When God calls us to chastity, what he's saying is, keep love in the appropriate context, understand what type of love is appropriate for each kind of relationship. So, far from being a restriction or a limiting of the person, the call to chastity opens the person up to authentic relationships in all those different kinds of love."
New Courage Chapters
200 chapters of
Courage & EnCourage
around the world
Pastor Initiates Second Courage Chapter in Providence
"Courage inspires call to holiness" for Rhode Island Catholics
According to a story in the Rhode Island Catholic, "after much prayer and discernment," Fr. James Ruggieri wrote Bishop Thomas Tobin to request permission to host a Courage chapter. With the Bishop's approval, the chapter has been launched. Fr. Ruggieri explains, “As Catholics, we need to present a new script that is valid and resonates in people’s hearts. … It’s being willing to talk with people, walk with people, and encourage people. I think we’ve been too silent on this topic, and we’re losing people, especially young people who are questioning their sexuality and feel like there is no place for them in the Church. … We need to change the narrative.”

Courage Resources
The "Pirate Nun's" Dramatic Impact on One Man's Life
Courage member, Paul Darrow, was recently interviewed for the CNA Newsroom podcast remembering Mother Angelica. Paul talks about how, in the midst of his "glamorous" gay life, he had a providential encounter with Mother Angelica on EWTN, which was pivotal in his return to Jesus Christ and the Church. "I've never been happier in my entire life; I've never felt more loved in my entire life. … And it's all thanks to Mother Angelica, and God, of course."

"Same-Sex Attracted Man Tells Redemption Story"
CatholicPhilly.com covered Courage member, Karl Miller's, February parish presentation in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia about his experiences as a man with same-sex attractions.

"Miller’s path to becoming a Courage speaker was a long and painful one. Raised in a devout Catholic family, he knew something was different when boys started talking about girls and he found that he didn’t have the same feelings." Karl then describes his experience years later, after he was drawn back to Christ and His Church, "It was harder to tell people that I was a gay man living the truth of the church than to tell people I was gay. … I lost friends."

EnCourage Resources
EnCourage Parents and Women at the Foot of the Cross
Fr. Bochanski's appearance on Women of Grace last week highlighted the challenges faced by EnCourage members as they seek to keep their families intact while also keeping the Faith. Father's insights focused on the parallels between the women at the foot of the Cross and EnCourage parents:

"These women are there because they are disciples, but their sons … [who were] apostles … are nowhere to be found. They're in that moment of trying to be with Jesus, stay faithful, and really feeling that pain and worry of why their boys aren't with Jesus, why their children have been separated from Him in that most important moment."
by James Tissot, c. 1890
Sorrowful Mysteries for EnCourage Members
Written by one of our EnCourage fathers, this series of reflections on the Sorrowful Mysteries connects the sufferings endured by Jesus with common situations experienced by our EnCourage members.

Annual Courage & EnCourage Conference
Conferencia internacional anual de Courage y EnCourage
Registration for the conference is now open. The registration form is in English, but we can help if you need assistance. Also, we will be offering simultaneous Spanish translation at the conference. For more information send us an email at oficina@couragerc.org.

El registro para la conferencia ya está abierto. Ofreceremos interpretación simultánea al español. Para más informes sobre cómo registrarse o sobre la traducción, por favor comuníquese al siguiente correo electrónico: oficina@couragerc.org
Courage-Latino April E-Newsletter in Spanish
Courage-Latino boletín electrónico de abril
You may subscribe to the Spanish Courage newsletter by clicking "Update Profile" at the bottom of this email and checking the box for "Boletín en español (Courage-Latino)." If you know of any Spanish-speaking people who would be interested in subscribing, please tell them to send an e-mail to  lorena@couragerc.org, including their full name, city, and country.

Also be sure to check out Courage's Spanish site at Couragerc.org/español.
El boletín electrónico en español de Courage-Latino será enviado a través de correo electrónico a quienes quieran recibirlo. Si usted conoce de alguien que esté interesado, por favor, dígale que nos escriba a esta dirección electrónica:  lorena@couragerc.org . Estaremos muy contentos de añadir su nombre completo y la ciudad y país donde vive en nuestra lista de subscriptores. 

No olvide visitar nuestro sitio web en  Couragerc.org/español .
Pastoral Resources
Come to the pre-conference Clergy Study Day ... 
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Illinois
This day of presentations for priests, deacons, and seminarians includes talks on the following foundational topics as they relate to same-sex attractions:

  • Catholic anthropology and sexual ethics
  • Insights from psychology
  • Sexual identity confusion (gender dysphoria)
  • Testimony from Courage member
  • Pastoral care
No charge for study day! We want to make it easy for you to come.

... and then stay for the Courage Conference
July 18-21, also at University of St. Mary of the Lake
“Courageous Friendship: Inspiring Hope and Renewal”

For Clergy Study Day and/or Conference
(Clergy study day is free. Fee charged for conference participation.)

Upcoming Events
Catholic Psychotherapy Association Conference
April 25-27, 2019, in Atlanta, Georgia
"Let Not Your Hearts Be Troubled"
Featuring Greg Popcak and Mark Yarhouse
Courage/EnCourage Spiritual Conference 
April 27, 2019, in Somers, New York 
Theme: "Divine Mercy and Families"
With Fr. Angelus, CFR, Fr. Innocent, CFR, and Fr. Gerald Murray
Courage Men's Retreat: Midwest
May 3-5, 2019, in Indianapolis, Indiana 
Retreat chaplain will be Fr. Philip Bochanski
Registration deadline has been extended. Sign up today!
Sports Camp XX
May 23-26, 2019, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Men's weekend of athletics, fellowship, and prayer designed for men who experience same-sex attractions and desire to develop and live the virtue of chastity, regardless of past sports experience or ability
Courage Women's Spring Retreat
May 30 - June 2, 2019, near Allentown, Pennsylvania
Retreat chaplain will be Fr. Philip Bochanski
Midwest Living Waters Leadership Training Seminar
July 6-12, 2019, in Kansas City, Kansas 
With Andy Comiskey and Desert Stream Ministries
Equips attendees for effective ministry to the sexually and relationally broken
Clergy Study Day
July 17, 2019, in Mundelein, Illinois 
In conjunction with Courage/EnCourage Conference.
More information in Resources for Ministry section of newsletter
Watch conference page for updates on clergy day.
Courage/EnCourage Conference
July 18-21, 2019, in Mundelein, Illinois 
Information | Brochure (schedule & speakers) | Registration open
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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