‘Mercy and Hope’ – Congress Plans Take Shape

Father Kazimierz Chwalek, MIC (left), and Fr. Matthew Mauriello (right), met in March with Fr. Joseph Holcomb, the associate rector and director of pilgrimages for the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, where the congress will be held in November.

Mercy Congress Plans Take Shape

Scott Hahn To Be Among the Speakers

Popular Catholic author Dr. Scott Hahn will be among the speakers at the North American Congress on Mercy (NACOM), set for Nov. 14-15, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, in Washington, D.C.

“The theme of ‘Mercy: Our Hope,’ will orient this important event,” said Fr. Matthew Mauriello, Congress president. “It will serve as a kind of ‘North star’ in pointing our plans to emphasize hope as an offshoot of mercy. The relationship between mercy and hope will be explored and shown in action during this great meeting.”

“Please mark your calendars and plan to join us for this wonderful opportunity to learn more about the abundant mercy of the Lord and to put mercy into practice in our own lives,” Fr. Matthew said.

Hahn, who has delivered numerous talks nationally and internationally as well as released many books and videotapes related to Scripture and the Catholic faith, will speak at 9:30 a.m., on Saturday, Nov. 14. He is a professor of theology and scripture at Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio, where he has taught since 1990. Hahn is author of the bestseller The Lamb’s Supper and other bestselling titles.

That morning at 7:30 a.m., registration for the Congress begins with a welcome and prayer by Fr. Matthew, slated from 9 to 9:30. Father Matt is pastor of Holy Rosary Church in Bridgeport, Conn. The Most Rev. William J. Lori, Bishop of Bridgeport and Episcopal Adviser to NACOM, appointed Fr. Matt as Congress president in 2007.

The Marians of the Immaculate Conception have been assisting Bishop Lori and Fr. Matthew with much of the planning and logistical work for the Congress. The North American Congress is one of several continental congresses being held this year and next as a follow-up to the first World Apostolic Congress on Mercy in Rome last year.

From 10:15 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, Teresa Bonapartis, who has been involved in post-abortion work and counseling for 20 years, will address the Congress. She is director of Lumina, a post-abortion referral service that operates under the auspices of Good Counsel Homes founded by Christopher Bell and Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR.

Following a break and testimonials by witnesses, lunch will be served continuous with time for confessions, from 12:30 to 2:15 p.m. At 2:15 p.m., Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC, will speak. Father Calloway’s dramatic conversion story has been captivating audiences for years, providing a compelling witness to God’s mercy. He is the author of Purest of All Lilies: The Virgin Mary in the Spirituality of St. Faustina and editor of two books on Mary.

Following Fr. Donald’s talk, the day concludes with a holy hour (3 to 4:15 p.m.) and a vigil Mass at 5:15 p.m. On Sunday, NACOM concludes with a closing Mass. The main celebrant for the Sunday Mass had not yet been announced.

Register for NACOM