May 2017
Dear Courage and  EnCourage members and friends,

It has been a big month for Courage in the media!  Thanks to Ann Schneible, our new Communications Director, we now have a social media presence on Facebook and Twitter, and more stories about us are making their way into the Catholic news. Below you will find some samples of the positive exposure we are getting. 

Be sure to continue reading as we fondly remember two recently deceased Courage chaplains, fill you in on upcoming events, and offer you some terrific resources for Courage, Encourage, and those in pastoral or catechetical positions. 

God bless you! 
The Courage Central Office 

Courage News
In the Media 
Like Us on Facebook!

In April Courage officially entered the world of social media! Each day brings a new Facebook post with news, helpful resources, inspiration, upcoming events, and more. Be sure to like us on Facebook, visit often, and share the Good News!

Follow Us on Twitter!  

We also now have an active presence on Twitter with new Tweets daily. Don't miss anything by signing up to follow us, and then spread the Good News by Retweeting! 

Fr. Bochanski on Register Radio  

In his interview on Register Radio, our Executive Director, Fr. Philip Bochanski, gives an overview of the work of Courage and speaks of the blessing of this ministry to his priesthood. 

Online Stories of  Courage at Mexican Bishop's Meeting 

The Catholic News Agency (CNA) and its sister organization, ACI Prensa, carried two stories, one in English and one in Spanish, about the Courage presence at a plenary assembly of the Mexican bishops in late April. Four representatives of Courage were in attendance.

Bishop Ramón Castro of Cuernavaca, México, spoke highly of our apostolate: "The accompaniment that Courage provides is a gift of Divine Providence, and it offers what very few of us do: that spiritual and human companionship which helps our brothers and sisters on their path to holiness and a real experience of faith."

Newspaper Reports on Ministry 

A two-part series in the National Catholic Register during April discussed what kind of ministry best embodies the Vatican CDF guidelines and the USCCB recommendations for pastoral care.  Included are interviews of members and friends of Courage and EnCourage as well as with Courage Executive Director, Fr. Philip Bochanski.

Read Part 1: "Treading the Uneven Terrain of 'Gay Ministry' in the Church"

Read Part 2: "How to Accompany Catholics With Same-Sex Attractions"

Diocese of Bismarck Launches EnCourage Radio Ads 

The Diocese of Bismarck, North Dakota, will soon be airing ads on the radio for their EnCourage chapter.  To discuss how you could propose something similar for your own diocese, please contact Ann

In Memoriam 
The members of Courage and EnCourage have a profound appreciation for their chaplains as they spend themselves offering us sacramental graces, sound counsel, and spiritual fatherhood. So we mourn the loss of these two beloved Courage chaplains and ask for your prayers for the repose of their souls. 

Fr. Peter M. Ryan, CSsR, died on Friday, May 12, after having ministered as a priest for 48 years.  He had been the Courage chaplain in Canberra, Australia.  See his obituary.  (Not to be confused with Fr. Peter F. Ryan, S.J., a current member of the Board of Courage.) 

Fr. Richard Huston died on May 14 after 22 years of priesthood following his later second vocation.  He was both the Courage and EnCourage chaplain in the Diocese of San Diego.   See a tribute from John Paul the Great University.

Courage and EnCourage Retreat 
Sunday, May 28, in San Antonio, TX
"I Have Told You So That My Joy May Be in You and That Your Joy May Be Complete" 

Flyer with details and registration (in English and Español)
NYC Day of Recollection 
Saturday, June 3, in New York City, NY
Fellowship, prayer, and the sacraments with Fr. Kazimierz Kowalski, Fr. Gerald Murray, and Fr. George Rutler.  For more information see the flyer or  contact us by email

St. Monica's tireless and finally fruitful prayers for St. Augustine inspire the members of EnCourage.
30th Annual Courage/EnCourage Conference 

Mundelein, IL, July 27-30  
(Clergy Study Day July 26)
University of Saint Mary of the Lake 
In suburban Chicago
Celebrating 30th anniversary of EnCourage 

Traducción Simultánea al Español 
Si desea asistir a la Conferencia Anual de Courage/EnCourage 2017 y tener traducción simultánea al español de las pláticas, por favor, escríbanos a esta dirección para mayor información:

courage Courage Resources
Focus on Andrew and Annette Comiskey 
2017 Conference Speakers 

Click for a short glimpse  
of Andrew and Annette's' story
Andrew and Annette Comiskey are the founders of Desert Stream/Living Waters Ministries. Beginning with Andrew's personal experience of same-sex attractions, God has led them to work together for nearly four decades to "proclaim to the world the transforming power of Jesus Christ" and to "equip the body of Christ to minister healing to the sexually and relationally broken through healing groups and leadership training."  

The Comiskeys' talk at our summer conference will be "Hope for a Whole-Enough Marriage." They will speak about how even an imperfect marriage "perfects its fractured members when both are submitted to Jesus and the other's good."  

Resources from the Comiskeys:
A Serious Conversation
Ludwig Johann Passini
Spiritual Direction or Counseling?

Courage  members do well to seek wise counsel as they strive to grow in self-knowledge and virtue, but it's not always easy to discern whether that guidance would be better sought from a good priest or from a professional counselor or therapist.  Founder of Allison Ricciardi, offers some helpful distinctions

Dr. Edward Sri Offers Keys for Responding to Relativism  

Dr. Edward Sri
How can we hang on to both truth and love as we relate to those we love who experience same-sex attractions or confusion about their sexual identity and who have elected to separate themselves from God, His Church, and His ways by their choices? Dr. Edward Sri offers seven very helpful keys in a series in the  National Catholic Register. 


EnCourage Unites in Prayer on Thursdays

Sometimes it seems that all that EnCourage members can do is pray for their loved ones.  There is a longstanding tradition in the EnCourage community of praying together, wherever they may be, on Thursdays in union with Our Lord's anguished prayer in the Garden of Gesthemane. They pray not only for their own loved ones, but also for the entire Courage and EnCourage family and beyond.  A favorite resource for these prayers is  Holy Hour of Reparation , a booklet  which  contains  enough prayers for an entire hour of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. 

For clergy, parish and diocesan staff, catechists, 
mental/medical health care professionals, and other pastoral ministers
Focus on Walt Heyer and Sexual Identity Confusion

Walt  Heyer once had surgery to become a "woman," but later regretted it, and is now living once again as the man whom he was created to be. He has a passion to help others who have similar regrets and travels extensively to tell his story of redemption to all who will listen. He also is eager to help churches learn how to respond to the people with sexual identity confusion in their midst.  

Walt's writing:

Walt's sites:
Sex Change Regret - Walt's site for people who regret changing their sex. 

St. Mary of the Lake
Clergy Study Day 
Wednesday, July 26, 2017 
(Courage Conference July 27-30) 
University of Saint Mary of the Lake 
Mundelein, Illinois, in suburban Chicago 

Speakers (bios on conference page)
  • Fr. Philip Bochanski - Christian Anthropology
  • Dr. Timothy Lock - Social Sciences
  • Deacon Patrick Lappert, M.D. - Transgender Surgery and Christian Anthropology
  • Witness testimonial 
Consider staying on for the full conference and experience the blessing of meeting the members of Courage and EnCourage.  Listen to Deacon Robert Walker as he speaks of the benefits of clergy attendance at the Courage conference to his ministry.  

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. 
CourageRC.Org | 203.803.1564 | Donate  | Contact Us

Like us on Facebook      Follow us on Twitter