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Comments for Congress 2006


Name: Irene
Date: October 12, 2006
Comments

We loved the closing liturgy at Congress 2006.  It was a tri-lingual Mass setting.  Can you give us the name of the Mass setting and where to find it?

Reply

The Mass setting was "Misa del Mundo" (Spanish for "Mass of the World") by Jesse Manibusan. He is published by OCP Publications. The link is www.ocp.org/en/products/music/11147.php.


Name: Ariadna
Date: October 6, 2006
Email: ajimenez_06@hotmail.com
Comments

Hello!
As always I loved this year's Congress and I can't wait to go to next year's Congress. However, while your website is insightful and you can find just about everything on here, you cannot find a place to update your address. I re-registered to get a Registration Guidebook but I wish you would have a way to update your address for when people move during the year that way duplicate books would be saved for others.

Reply

You are correct. We currently do not keep our mailing information online to be able to update addresses. However, we do use the NCOA (National Change of Address) service from the Post Office. So addresses that have changed since last year should be caught and updated. (The NCOA found 677 in last year's list of people who moved.)


Name: Barbara E.
Date: August 9, 2006
Comments

Regarding the request to not allow rolling backpacks: Some of us have back and shoulder problems/injuries that prevent us from ever carrying heavy backpacks and bags again. The rolling backpack allows us to carry our lunches, jackets, umbrellas, etc. along with all the things we purchase in the vendor areas, just like those whose backs are strong -- something which we otherwise would not be able to do. I have been almost run into by wheelchairs and motorized scooters -- should we ask people who rely on these to stay away too? A little consideration, please.


Name: Ann Cavera
Date: August 6, 2006
Comments

How are speakers and musicians chosen for the Congress?

Reply

The process is this: The Congress Committee chooses a "theme" based on the weekend's Sunday readings. The Liturgy Committee then selects a musician to compose the official theme song for Congress. (An original song is composed every year.) Next, committee members and Religious Education staffers jointly outline general workshop categories, which is followed by identification of specific workshop topics. From there, workshop speakers and musicians are discussed, then reviewed by the Congress Committee and are approved and invited by Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony.


Name: Rebecca Zdybel
Date: April 25, 2006
Comments

As a music minister from South Carolina where Catholics comprise only 3 % of the population, it was exciting to come to Congress and partake of the cultural diversity in your liturgies, and appreciate just how wide the arms of God can spread in order to be inclusive of as many as possible.

I enjoyed the music very much, particularly a workshop run by Sean Mahon, Cesar Marquez and Victor Vanacore titled "Extreme Makeover: Liturgical Music Edition." Their fresh renditions of music we all know helped me go home with ideas for our
own music makeovers. I hope to return and partake of more of their offerings at future Congresses.

I also thoroughly enjoyed my exposure to Matt Maher. His concerts were vibrant and inspirational for me as well. I can't wait to introduce more of his music to our parish!


Name: Amy
Date: April 23, 2006
Comments

I really enjoyed Congress this year!! It's no wonder why every year more and more people come to this event.

I do have some observations and suggestions:

  1. Please DO NOT allow rolling backpacks. I lost track of how many times I saw people almost fall and hurt themselves over these things. Though they are convenient to use, the vendor area is not the place for one.

  2. Please have more food options. The lines were too long due to the lack of food options. Also areas to sit to eat lunch. I can't believe that in that large of a place more areas could not be cordoned off for lunch areas.

  3. Hall D though good size for the speakers that were in them, were horrible acoustically. I went to hear Terry Hershey and I could hear everything else around me as well. It was distracting. It took away from the talk. I know that the room set up was not ideal as well and overheard Mr. Hershey trying to see if he could speak somewhere else so that he could be seen by everyone. I know the sound person did all that he could to help but this is a good indication that the set up wasn't thought through.

I give you kudos though because overall you did a great job and I am already counting the days till next year's Congress.


Name: wellsprings_uk
Date: April 19, 2006
Comments

Hello
As a middle-aged Brit I have always felt uncomfortable with liturgical dance! However, the dancers at the Congress helped me to understand something of what Miriam's and David's dances before the tabernacle/the Lord meant to those who witnessed them and ensured they were recorded. I witnessed movement that directed my eyes to the Word and Sacred Action.
I will never be a liturgical dancer - but thank-you for showing me what Miriam and David offered to the People of God


Name: Greg Johnson
Date: April 18, 2006
Comments

Overall, this year's Congress was great as always. It is a highlight of the year!

There are always some "old favorite" speakers and a mix of new speakers. To continue its wonderful growth and vitality, the RE Congress needs a steady infusion of new speakers and new voices.

With the above point as a lead-in, here is my question:

What is the process for suggesting new speakers?

Reply

You may suggest speakers to congress@la-archdiocese.org or submit speaker information along with audio or video samples to: Congress Coordinator, 3424 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010. All new speakers are reviewed by our Congress Committee and are approved and invited by Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony.


Name: Ann Menna
Date: April 17, 2006
Comments

God bless you all.
We from Philadelphia had a wonderful experience and came in touch with a Church alive.
Happy Easter
ANN


Name: Barb Votel
Date: April 17, 2006
Comments

Just wanted to thank you all for making the RECongress wonderful as usual. Loved attending the workshops, and found them to be informative and interesting as usual. Still miss "The God Squad" -- are they still making appearances?

Also happy that you invited Ceili Rain back in 2006. I heard them first at Congress in 2000 and have become a big fan of their happy, hopeful music. Looking around at the large crowd at their concert, it was evident that their fan base keeps growing. So many were singing along with them and dancing. Hope they will continue to be in your future plans too. Can't get too much of a good thing. And the Irish dancers were wonderful too.
 


Name: Alice Camille
Date: April 17, 2006
Comments

Steve Binz' presentation on the Book of Revelation was the most professional and enlightening treatment of a topic I can recall in over 15 years of attending Congress. His use of PowerPoint was most effective (not the lame "read along with me as I read this outline to you" approach we too often see!) And his enthusiasm for his thesis -- that apocalyptic writing is a journey of imagination through which the reader is changed -- has made a convert out of me. I used to speak on Revelation myself, but I'm tearing up my notes in favor of Binz' approach! I sincerely hope we see Steve again at Congress. We can never have too many speakers preaching the Scriptures with passion and creativity.
 


Name: Marie
Date: April 17, 2006
Comments

This was my first year attending and I truly enjoyed it. It was a very uplifting event with great speakers, music, exhibitors, etc. However, since I didn’t get a chance to turn in my evaluation form, I would like to give a few comments:

  1. Please have the exhibit area open longer. It was very hard to try to fit it in unless you skipped a session, which I ended up doing. It is so big and crowded, you just need more time to go through it.

  2. Please have more breaks in the seating in the big arenas (D&C). The long rows of seats made it difficult to get in and out. Also, the noise from the other side was bad.

  3. Please have more copies of the liturgy music and readings. One I went to ran out, and the other didn’t receive them until after the mass started.

  4. More food options and more seating available to sit in when you are eating lunch.

Overall, it was a wonderful event and we can’t wait until next year. Thanks to everyone who put together this great event, coordinating all the great speakers and programs.


Name: Bill O’Connor
Date: April 12, 2006
Comments

[My friend] Kevin attended the Congress this year for the first time and he was most impressed. Indeed, the “Church is alive and well.” Once again I wish to say 2006 was a great Congress. Thank all the Congress Staff from Sr. Edith on down to all the volunteers for their dedication and hard work.
Peace, Love, Prayers,
Bill O’Connor
 


Name: Annie Paliza
Date: April 12, 2006
Comments

After taking several years off from Religious Ed involvement to raise two children, I returned this year and I have to say this Congress was a great ending to a fun year! The sessions left me feeling renewed and excited about returning to Religious Education. In addition, the Hispanic Mass on Saturday evening was absolutely wonderful. The Bishop's message, the music, and the liturgy were all very uplifting. THANK YOU!
 


Name: Lynette Castiglione
Date: April 12, 2006
Comments

My comments for the 2006 liturgy: Great as usual -- especially Fr. Tony Richard's mass and classes. Always bring him back. My one drawback that I wish you would work on for next year is the scheduling. Can you make it so the exhibit hall is open longer than 5 p.m. and the liturgies and breaks time out better. It is so hard to have dinner and go to concerts.

I was looking over comments from the past and was very upset to hear that someone was upset about any speaker speaking from Dignity in San Francisco. As someone who knows people that attend this church on a regular basis it is unfair to judge people when you haven't seen the whole package. There are fine people who should be speaking at Congress. But, over all, great as usual. But do reconsider the scheduling ... and video taping as well.
 


Name: Josefina Valdés Dávila
Date: April 12, 2006
Comments

Muy muy agradecida!

Mirar las fotos fue asomarme de nuevo a la experiencia preciosa de su Congreso! Felicidades y que el Señor les bendiga para seguir siempre adelante!

Gracias por compartir su riqueza

Editorial Enrique de Ossó. Guadalajara, México.
 


Name: Dorothy Turner
Date: April 12, 2006
Comments

Thank you for one of the best Congresses I have attended. For me and I believe I can speak also for St Raphael's (Santa Barbara) youth ministry team, the highlights were Fr. Tony Ricard, Mark Hart, Matt Maher (wow!), Hall B Youth Day Mass & the Young Adult Congress Mass. That Mass was an incredible experience of celebration and Spirit.

I just had two issues to share:

1) Hall B Youth Day Mass' sound crew for the SB Regional Choir was really awful. It has never been that way before so we were very surprised, disappointed and mystified.

2) I attended 2 sessions in Hall D1. There was a concurrent session in Hall D2. The distance between the two sessions was not adequate. The sound overlapped in a very distracting manner and made it much harder to hear and concentrate on the sessions. Maybe that will be corrected when Congress has use of the other hotels next year.

Thank you very much for a wonderful, uplifting Congress. I am still riding the spiritual high.


Name: Gary Jansan
Date: April 11, 2006
Comments

Dear Sister Edith,
I would like you to bring back one of the speakers you had at Congress in the past -- Father Tony Cambell. He was good
and is missed. So please bring him back.

I would like like to see one other thing change at the RECongress. I would like to see the booths open after the Friday and Saturday night liturgies. People end up missing their workshops to go to the exhibit booths.
 


Name: Nerissa Broas
Date: April 11, 2006
Comments

For those of us who forgot to turn in our evaluation forms--it would be nice to be able to do our evaluations online. Anyway--Great Job!!

Reply

Thanks for the idea. We'll look into it for next year.


Name: Sr. Lucy, fma
Date: April 9, 2006
Comments

Several dioceses require continuing education credits for certification in religious education. Can one get CE credits for attending workshops offered through the Religious Education Congress?

Reply

Yes, in cooperation with the Office of Religious Education at the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, both Loyola Marymount University and Mount St. Mary's College offer continuing education credit for attending the Religious Education Congress. You can find specific information in our Registration Guidebooks (2006 pdf, pgs 93-94).


Name: Josefa Esparrago
Date: April 9, 2006
Comments

Some suggestions:

1. Please invite the St. Louis Jesuits again in the coming years. Their music is very uplifting. I would love to have them sing at the Arena masses. This year the Friday evening Mass where they sang was filled to capacity. Many were turned down at the door. Their Sunday lunch concert was a big delight. Please include more of their music in future liturgies. I had a great session, too, with Matthew Kelly.

2. If the Masses have to be inclusive of different ethnic groups, why was the Prayer of the Faithful done only in English & Spanish (referring to the Sunday AM closing Mass)? What happened to the different representations?

3. I find ever-growing Hispanization over the years. True, there is some Vietnamese, but there's just too much Spanish in the opening & closing sessions, even if there are already special Spanish liturgies. At least, please keep EACH song monolingual, one at a time. It's kind of distracting, esp. for non-Hispanics. This is an international event, not just for LA. You could find some backlash - especially with too much emphasis on freedom for illegals. I didn't mind Spanish all these years, but this year's political tone made it offensive. Please keep personal opinions in individual sessions, not for GENERAL ones. Hard-working legal immigrants who survived in spite of tough INS rules HAVE THEIR RIGHTS, too. Cardinal Mahony, please remember that.

4. For environmental responsibility, please include a recycling bin. There's so much recyclable materials that we can keep away from our landfills: paper, cans, plastic.

My overall experience at the Congress was very good. This is my 21st Congress, never missing a single one since I came to the U.S. I've been a volunteer, too, for many years. I hope the pleasant experience stays that way. Thank you.

Thank you, Fathers John, Roc, Bob, and Dan, for sharing your talent.


Name: Irene
Date: April 7, 2006
Comments

I have attended over 15 Congresses and enjoyed them all. Things seem to get better and better each year. One problem we had was attending a workshop in Hall C. The acoustics made it difficult to hear the comments from the audience members using microphones. Maybe it would be better not to have workshops in this hall if they include audience questions/comments [for the speaker].


Name: David Portugal
Date: April 7, 2006
Comments

I am always amazed at how Congress continues to improve! I also would like to see Scared Space open before and after sessions.... When Danielle Rose was singing in there during Adoration I thought I was in heaven! Truly its gotta be close to it! As for the post about extending Youth Day... what we did was take our Parish YOUTH LEADERS to the 3 day event. After all its not a family event as much as it is a event for those who teach the faith! Just my opinion. ;-)


Name: Claudia
Date: April 6, 2006
Comments

I agree that the Sacred Space should be open before and after sessions. This year I also felt that climate control was erratic -- the big rooms were freezing (and noisy!) and the small rooms were hot! But overall the experience was wonderful!


Name: Claudia
Date: April 5, 2006
Comments

1) Sacred Space -- needs to be open before and after sessions. It would have been great to be able to say good night to Him on my way out.
2) Contemplative Mass -- needs a larger venue!!! The one with Michael John Poirier was "sold out" by 4:45! That is what people want -- good solid liturgy without dancers or themes.


Name: Claudia
Date: April 5, 2006
Comments

Congress was extraordinary! I loved it. You had tremendous speakers this year. Congratulations. But I do have a complaint on Youth Day. It will be our 5th year for our church going to Youth Day, and even though you always mention not to reserve any seats in the Arena many chaperones do. We had a group of 80 this year and could not sit together because of saved seats by other groups. I don't think they had their first workshop in the Arena. I know is difficult to ask for tickets at the entrance of the workshops in the Arena but it would be really helpful. Many of my teenagers ask if they have ever had any workshops in Spanish in Youth Day, and if you ever going to have any in the future years?
Thank you very much and God Bless You.

Reply

I'm sorry that chaperones do not follow directions about not saving seats. In the future you might want to bring it to the attention of a Congress staff person that day. In the past we have offered workshops in Spanish and no one chose them. At this time we do not plan on offering workshops in Spanish.

Mike Norman, Youth Day Coordinator


Name: SJD
Date: April 4, 2006
Comments

Congratulations on another wonderful weekend at Congress! My wife and I have been participating for 24 years now and it continues to be an annual highlight for us!

I was wondering about the Hilton and the Marriott. Have they opted out for the Congress or cut way back on the number of rooms allotted to Congress participants? I tried to get reservations last September and they said they were already sold out. I also noted a paucity of workshops/liturgies in those two venues. What's up?

Steve

Reply

Hi Steve,

Thanks for the congrats. Glad your experience was good. The Hilton and Marriott will be back in full usage next year. This year there was another event so we used all the space in the Center. We’ll go back to our ‘old ways’ of using the hotel space next year (and we have plenty of hotel rooms too!)

Peace,
Vikki Shepp, Congress Coordinator


Name: Gary Jansan
Date: April 4, 2006
Comments

Dear Ms. Shepp
I would like to see a change in the Sunday Mass. I would like to hear the Mass in
in English only, not bilingual. I am talking about the mass in the Arena

Reply

Gary,
Thanks for your comments. As you are probably aware, our entire Congress is a trilingual event. We have speakers in English, Spanish and Vietnamese and we include all three language groups in our closing liturgies. It is important that we acknowledge all involved.

Peace,
Vikki Shepp, Congress Coordinator


Name: Glenn Meyer
Date: April 4, 2006
Comments

All of the sessions my wife and I attended were excellent. Particularly those of Sr. Helen Prejean, Matthew Kelley, Fr. Tony Ricard.

It is noted that in the Arena accommodations are made for the handicapped and have gotten better. I believe that the Masses held in other rooms should also have areas for those with special needs.

Overall, an excellent experience.


Name: Barbara Cheddar
Date: April 4, 2006
Comments

Hi,

I am an Asst. DRE at Holy Spirit Parish in the Diocese of Sacramento. I attended Congress this past weekend. Thank you for all the hard work everyone there does to put this wonderful event together.

I would like to promote more attendance by catechists in our parish as well as our deanery for the 2007 Congress. Will there a video/DVD or video clips available from the 2006 Congress to help me "advertise" this? If so can you tell me how I can get it. If not, would you consider putting something together, not just for me, but for other diocese as well.

Reply

We will be posting photos from the weekend on the site in the next week. And check back for a new PhotoShow of Congress 2006 coming soon online at www.RECongress.org.


Name: Kim Nguyen
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

I had a wonderful time at Congress 2006! I cannot wait for another Congress! A big thanks to everyone who made Congress events possible, including attendees!

"Let the children come to Me ...for theirs is the kingdom of God!" I've been trying to get the youth group at my church to attend the Youth Day event for the past two years but the event gets full so quick! Is it possible to expand the event (more days, more workshops, and/or increase attendee capacities) so more youth could benefit? It's a little challenging to get youths to be interested in Catholic events and since Youth Day is an opportunity, why not make more rooms for them? I don't want youths to have to wait until they are older to attend the regular 3-day Congress (that's especially for adults). I'd like the youths to experience the joy and inspiration that many Congress attendees experience. Besides, what if the youths lose interest when they are older and have the opportunity? It's a resentment that Youth Day is only one day and I feel guilty for the 3-day Congress while my younger brother and his fellow youth buddies stay home. Please, please consider this, not just for teachers, parents, chaperones, but more for HIS children. THANKS!


Name: Emmy G.
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

Hello, My name is Emmy. I just wanted to share that Congress has amazed me once again at how wonderful it went and I think that it is really great that we are able to go and share knowledge, faith, community and the Body of Christ together. God is here as David Haas sang and how do you know, one might ask... And the response is you could feel it, touch it, embrace it, love it, that is how you know. So, thank you once again for a wonderful Congress. Congratulations to all those who contributed to Congress and to those who make it happen for people to go and share and participate in this beautiful gift, called faith. So, thank you again. I hope to see you again and maybe I will get involved next year. May God bless you and be with you always. Have a wonderful day.


Name: Lynda
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

Congress 2006 was fantastic! Great music, great presenters. My only request is that you keep Sacred Spaces open in the early morning and evening! I had no time to get there during the day without missing a session. I would have loved to have spent some time there in the evening as a way to wind down and be in God's presence after a day jam-packed with other things. Thanks!


Name: Richard Mara
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

I attended my first Congress this year and it was fantastic! One of my friends here at St. Francis Parrish in Bakersfield could not attend and so I grabbed her ticket and went to all of her workshops. Poor her, lucky me!
 


Name: Orlando Leon
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

I had an idea: Have short video presentations by youth on their teachers, religious and family members who have had an impact in their lives and why. Show these before each event in the Arena and perhaps largest halls.


Name: Nancy Bridges
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

I've attended Congress for many years and I attended Youth Day for the first time this year. Though I felt most everything went remarkably well (music, speakers). I was disappointed in the liturgy as it did not follow the GIRM (the chalice used, the gospel, the "homily".) It is possible to have someone on your planning team who is an expert on the GIRM? It's important to teach our kids obedience, most especially to the directives of the Church. I felt that "rapping the Gospel" was particularly disrespectful of it and if I remember correctly, is also supposed to be proclaimed by a priest. I wish for our kids to have a love and respect for our liturgy in all its beauty and wish we wouldn't compromise it for the sake of entertaining them.


Name: Elise Frederick
Date: April 3, 2006
Comments

Congratulations on another WONDERFUL Congress.

A very sincere THANK YOU to all the many volunteers who gave so much -- I hope you know how much your kindness, professionalism, time and energy are appreciated.

There were times it seemed that we may have outgrown the facility. The first two Masses we tried to attend on Saturday night were full -- and I know there were many who wanted to attend Youth Day who received the letters saying it was full, were really disappointed -- but as problems go, having too many who want to participate is the good kind of problem!


Name: Kris
Date: March 29, 2006
Comments

Just wanted to know what happened with the hotel situation this year? Knowing that Congress was still over six months away, I thought I was ahead of the game when, in mid-August 2005, I contacted the Anaheim Marriott to make reservations for Congress and was informed that not only was the Congress block already sold out, but the ENTIRE hotel was booked solid for Congress weekend. The Marriott wasn't the only hotel, so was the Hilton, and Clarion. How was this possible with Congress over 7 months away? How often does one have to add their email address to the Congress website to get updates? I would have thought that once the hotels were available, an email would have been sent out letting people know. As it was, most hotels would have already been booked even before the registration booklets were mailed out. Please consider this for Congress 2007 and let people know as soon as possible when hotels are available for booking. Thank you.

Reply

Because of other conventions, the Marriott and the Hilton were not available to us for Congress 2006. (But we were able to add two other hotels to our hotel list.)

We do try to add the hotel information to our Emailing. You can sign up for our RECongress Emailing updates at www.RECongress.org/optin.htm


Name: Carol Gallagher
Date: March 27, 2006
Comments

We are looking into the Anaheim Marriott at 700 W. Convention Way. For the last 2 years we have called at the end of July. It has been to late. We would also like to stay at the Anaheim Hilton or the Clarion. All are right there. When I called they told us the contracts were not settled yet for the 2007 Congress.

Reply

The Hilton contract is finalized. There are over 1000 rooms for 2007 so you won’t have a problem booking (unless you wait really long). We will try to post the hotel information as we get it on the website. The Marriott contract should be done soon. Those two hotels have to wait for their corporate offices/reservations to ok taking reservations so you could try calling beginning May or June. Sorry I can’t give you much more information.

Vikki Shepp, Congress Coordinator


Name: Albert Leung
Date: March 27, 2006
Comments

Hello Fellow Christians: I will be attending the RECongress on March 31 which is only 5 days from now. I would like to enquire if any of the gathering or prayer masses can be videotaped. I know that I could buy audiotapes for the seminars as I have done that in the past. My small faith community group is very interested to see the extent of the convention.

Reply

Videotapes will not be available this year. It is a rather complicated process as we have to get copyrights from a variety of persons participating ... musicians, music, presiders, etc. However, it is something that we want to consider well in advance for next year.
-- Sr. Edith Prendergast, Director, Office of Religious Education


Name: Maggie Albo
Date: March 23, 2006
Comments

You should be aware that Prime Time Shuttle does not have a handicap-accessible van. It is out of service and they do not provide alternative service. I did find Super Shuttle who can accommodate my scooter but it will cost more than double the fare! This is crucial to many who will attend. Please do not consider Prime Time for your next Congress.


Name: Charlemagne Rafols
Date: March 16, 2006
Comments

First of all, I’m very excited about attending my 2nd Congress and I know you are working hard to make it great. Thank you! I teach 7th grade at St. Dominic in Eagle Rock, where I also instruct Drama and primary Music.

As a teacher, I foster my students to make wise choices in life, to help them become the best version of themselves – including through what they listen to. One thing that seriously disturbed me last year was the Young Adult Dance atmosphere. First and foremost, the deejay played songs that included cursing and overtly suggestive lyrics/themes. It proverbially paralleled the smoky, uncomfortable feeling of a typical dance club. But this was happening AT a Catholic function. After discussing this with other Congress participants, at least one explained that’s why they stayed away from that event.

Having worked on numerous Confirmation and young adult retreats, I know that youth can enjoy appropriate, fun, and popular music without having to succumb to the ones that present the unnecessary. Friends of mine have deejays and dancing at their young adult parties, making sure the deejay only plays what’s appropriate. I also know that this is possible from my experience as a radio veteran, which includes being Music Director at K-BIG 104 and years of mobile deejaying. And I know that not all popular music is inappropriate.

Please don’t get me wrong; I really want a Young Adult Dance – as an avid music fan who likes to boogie down and is still part of that age range! And while it may be too late for this year, why not even present it as a family and friends dance party? Dads and moms can still kick up their heels, and it would be a great family building activity, connecting the youth and adults of the convention.

I will even volunteer my consulting services if you’d like.

Respectfully and Fervently,
Charlemagne Rafols


Name: Teena P
Date: March 16, 2006
Comments

It is unfortunate for those groups who received letters that they did not get into Youth Day. My comment is that it causes me anxiety to wonder if our group did -- I believe the Congress should send out a confirmation letter or email letting us know that our registration and payment has been received since groups do start fundraising in advance and setting hotel/airplane reservations. All we ask from Congress is for common courtesy in alerting groups of their registration status since youth have been asked to accommodate the cost and time commitment. There has never been advance contact from Congress regarding Youth Day registrations and everyone lies in waiting for two months, guessing when those tickets will come in the mail.

Reply

We are always looking for ways to improve things. We weren't able to accomplish the Youth Day online registration this year, but next year we hope to have an online solution that should avoid the problem.


Name: Pat Yost
Date: March 9, 2006
Comments

Would like to see some speakers and workshops regarding "Returning Catholics" (Landings), to bring awareness to my brothers and sisters in faith. This could encourage more parishes to support and develop these types of ministries.


Name: Tess
Date: March 3, 2006
Comments

Hopefully, this year's procedure will be better. I had two sessions I had tickets to - and I was late for both of them (about 10-15 minutes) because I had to dash from one hotel to the Convention Center. The door "guard' would not let me in because it was already full.


Name: Heidi Cervantes
Date: February 17, 2006
Comments

I was extremely disappointed to get a very short and not terribly friendly letter letting me know that my youth group would not be allowed to attend youth day. We sent our registration on Feb. 7th-and although you did correctly quote your warning that it fills up, I have brought kids in the past and signed up later with no problem. I am now stuck with over $1500 dollars in non-refundable flights and 10 very disappointed kids. I understand your issues -- I hope you see ours. I will in the future wait to book flights -- but we have been before (it is awesome we love it) and never expected any problems. We will miss our Youth Day terribly! I wish there was a solution. :(

Reply

The calendar made things different this year. The rate increase deadline usually falls the end of December, about a month before Youth Day reaches capacity. However, everything was later this year. The deadline wasn't until February 6th, and Youth Day closed just days after the rate increase. Many view the rate deadline as a Youth Day "registration deadline," and unfortunately it was not so this year.


Name: Deacon Ed Smith
Date: November 22, 2005
Comments

In the age of compact discs, provide audio for the needs of the attendee. Rather than buying numerous tapes, which are on the way out, purchase one disc with the requested presentations.

Reply

For Congress 2006 we are indeed going to offer tapes AND audio CDs of the workshop session. (Not all workshops are recorded, check with our workshop listings for those sessions marked by an asterisk or tape symbol, indicating that it will be recorded.)


Name: Kathleen Cervantes
Date: November 22, 2005
Comments

I did some research online and found information indicating that DIGNITY, the group of gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender people who claim Catholic identity and are in open dissent with regards to the Church's teachings on sexuality as expressed in the Catechism and elsewhere, presented at the Youth Day and at other workshops in 2003. I am trying to decide whether to allow my teens to attend, and I need to know in advance whether or not they or any of their representatives, will be speaking, or if any open dissent of Church teaching on sexuality will be advocated by any speaker. How are prospective speakers screened and chosen, especially for Youth Day, is a more general and also important question which I would like answered. Yours in Christ.

Reply

All Congress speakers are carefully chosen and approved by the Cardinal. There are no speakers from DIGNITY.

Vikki Shepp, Congress Coordinator


Name: Chris
Date: September 5, 2005
Comments

Has Youth Day or Congress ever considered asking Michael Pritchard as either a keynote speaker or workshop speaker? He is a wonderful advocate for youth.

Reply

We have asked Michael Pritchard in the past and he was unavailable. We do have him as a potential speaker and if the right topic ever came up for him we would invite him.

Mike Norman, Youth Day Coordinator


Name: Amy van Arkel
Date: June 25, 2005
Comments

What happened to Kevin Saunders?? He is one of the great speakers that came to the Religious Education Congress. Why was he not invited to the latest Religious Education Congress? He was one of the reasons that I attended Congress. Please let me know what happened to him? Please invite him back!!


Name: Kenneth J. Brown
Date: June 23, 2005
Comments

The Congress in 2007 will take place on the feast of Katherine Drexel (March 3). She is the most recent American saint and it would be good if the Congress might organize some kind of activity around her feast day. She founded the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament in Philadelphia. I was educated by them in New Orleans. There is a huge African-American population in L.A. that has devotion to her. Many of them were educated by her sisters in New Orleans. I am a seminarian at St. John's but studying for Monterey.
 

Name: Edwina Clay
Date: May 10, 2005
Comments

I have attended several Congresses and usually attend those that pertain to liturgy and spirituality. Richard Cheri's workshops are always dynamic. His musical directing style is one that can be easily translated into leading a small worship group such as a prayer group or non-liturgical worship event, into prayer through song. He was not used for liturgy this year. Even though I participated in the choir for one of the liturgies, I can say from first-hand experience that his style of bringing the assembly into the worship experience is unparalleled. Anyone who can have an entire arena on its feet, hands raised in prayer, singing and actively participating, needs more attention. His method can be translated into leading small and/or non-liturgical groups into prayer and worship through song. about it!


Name: Tere
Date: April 04, 2005
Comments

I notice the need for more Spanish speaking presenters. I wanted to recommend the following person as a possible Spanish speaking presenter for 2006: Fr. Bruce Nieli, CSP, of St. Patrick's Church in Memphis, Tenn. Fr. Bruce is fluent in Spanish and a dynamic speaker. He would certainly make an excellent presenter. Aside from presiding at our parish's Annual St. Anne Novena for many years, he and Fr. Domingo Rodriguez were the presiders at our Annual Novena when our parish celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2001. Fr. Bruce travels extensively throughout the U.S. spreading the Word of God. Hopefully you will consider him as a presenter for 2006.


Name: Rose Mijares
Date: March 29, 2005
Comments

Hi, I want to know if I could order a video/DVD/taping of the Saturday evening Young Adult Mass at the Arena with Fr. Tony Ricard and the Sunday morning mass. If so, how? Thanks, we had a "full-filled" time.

Reply

We don't record any of the Liturgies; however, we will look into the possibility of that for Congress 2006.


Name: Helen
Date: March 22, 2005
Comments

If I read the website correctly, Fr. Joseph Girzone was a guest speaker at the Los Angeles Congress at the Anaheim Convention Center approximately 5 or 6 years ago.

Reply

Yes, he last appeared at RECongress in 1998.


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