Monday, September 15, 2014

15th Call to Holiness Conference, and Solemn High Mass Photos; Audio and Video

This weekend Call to Holiness had it's 15th conference since it began in 1996.  It was held at the Best Western Sterling Inn in Sterling Heights, Michigan.  Feedback I have gotten thus far has been very positive.  People felt the subject matter helped them to probe their own spiritual lives deeper. The speakers provided people things needed for discernment, especially in the area of the virtues.  As a member of the Board of Directors, I can tell you that we were all very glad that Archbishop Vigneron accepted our invitation to be the keynote speaker.  I also heard many attendees express likewise.

If you could not attend the conference, CD's and DVD's are available through the homepage,, by printing a form and sending it in, or by using the online option at Eventbrite. 

What follows are just a few of the many images I took. A link to the gallery will be found after the photos below.  I would appreciate a direct link to this post, rather than to the photo galleries, so people can get the background and other information, including that about audio and video. 

The conference began with a dinner on Friday night.  Dr. Ray Guarendi and Dale Ahlquist played off of one another very well.  We had 250 at the dinner - just 10 shy of the number of place settings.

Friday Night Dinner

Saturday, Main Conference

On Saturday, there were a number of events taking place at the same time.  Years ago, it was hard to find a conference like this and the Call to Holiness conferences would draw from 1000-2000 people.  These days, it is hard for any Catholic apostolate or the Archdiocese of Detroit to plan an event and not have something overlap.  I suppose that is a good problem to have here in metro Detroit.  We were blessed with about 600 people between the 60 in the youth conference and those at the main conference.

We could not have had a finer MC than Dale Ahlquist on Saturday.  I have been aware of G.K. Chesterton and have watched some of Dale's programs on EWTN, but after hearing him speak Friday, I have a desire to finally dig in to some of his writings.

I wish I could summarize what each speaker talked on, but running around taking pictures and tending to other things, I myself rarely get to hear the talks.  I end up getting the DVD's and seeing them after the fact.  Here are photos of the speakers on Saturday.

Sr. John Dominic of the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, kicked things off in the main conference.  I saw her booth in the vendor room and I would encourage everyone to visit their webpage for the curriculum they have on the virtues.  They have materials that would be easy to use in the home or in school.  See it here:

The president of Call to Holiness, Chris Kolomjec, introduced Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron.  Chris praised him his defense of life, and of traditional marriage.

I heard from a number of people who told me they liked how he broke things down into parts. They felt it was something they could easily walk away with.

Fr. Aidan Logan, o.c.s.o, the Vocations Director for the Archdiocese for the Military Services, U.S.A., is seen listening to Archbishop Vigneron. He had a booth representing his archdiocese in the vendor room.  He celebrated the Noon Mass at Assumption Grotto on Sunday, pictures to follow in this same post.

Here, the Archbishop was encouraging devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and speaking of it's importance.

Naturally, I took more photos of my archbishop, but I like having stock photos too.  Here are two of my favorites.

This photo I call, "The Angelus."  Dale had asked Archbishop Vigneron to say grace as boxed lunches were being wheeled into the hallway.  But His Excellency noted that we were approaching noon and said we should pray the Angelus, after which, he said grace and blessed the food.

As an aside, Archbishop Vigneron will be leading the Helpers of God's Precious Infants of Michigan prayer vigil for life this Saturday, September 20, 2014.  See details here.

Dr. Peter Kreeft spoke next.  As with many of the other talks, I myself did not get to hear this one and am looking forward to watching him on DVD (purchase info at top of post).

Dale was having fun with Father William Casey, C.P.M., in his introduction.  The priest found it funny too.  He is with the Fathers of Mercy.  Click around their website for resources.

Dr. Ray closed out the day.  We had to close out the vendor room before the talk ended, but his table was in the hallway afterwards.  People should visit his site to get his excellent material.

Saturday, Youth Conference

Board Member, Stephanie Nofar-Kelly did an outstanding job of pulling together a phenomenal youth conference.  We had 60 attendees this time.  Most of the speakers from the main event spoke to the young people, including Archbishop Vigneron.  Here are some photos I took.

Fr. Anthony Kathawa led this event as he did at the 14th Call to Holiness.  He was so popular we had to bring him back.

The Archbishop spoke to the young people for about 15 minutes, encouraging them to be bold in following Christ. He explained how the world will pull them into ways that are contrary to Church teachings and to have courage in saying, "yes" to God's ways and "no" to the world's.  He then fielded questions for another 15 minutes before going on to speak at the main conference for an hour.  Here, he listens to a young man's question.

I was not able to capture all that went on in the youth conference and elsewhere, but here are a few images taken by fellow board member, Debbie Bloomfield.  

Young people had an opportunity to participate in a pro-life demonstration during one of their breaks.  Saturday was a National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children.  Our conference took more than a year to plan so we were unaware that it would fall on the same day.  Ours was one of three main events that took place in metro Detroit that day.  The other was a Christ Life session.

Fellow board member, Stephanie Nofar-Kelly, also organist extraordinaire, was behind the great youth conference.

Here is just one area where people were able to eat lunches. It was in the main lobby area.  Tables were also set up in the center of the vendor area.  I heard from many vendors who were happy with how things turned out. We made sure there was plenty of break time so people could visit them and to give the talks a little time to sink in.  Sometimes, conference talks are ram-rodded through with only a 5 minute break between, with a 45 minute period for lunch that is often running late and compressed.  We wanted a more relaxed atmosphere.  

Debbie got the vendor area too.

Here you see the vendor area during lunch with people eating in the center and vendors lined up around the walls.

Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form, Exaltation of the Holy Cross

On Sunday we had a Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form, celebrated by Fr. Aidan Logan, o.c.s.o.  He was joined by Fr. Charles White IV as deacon and Fr. John Bustamante as subdeacon.  Deacon Richard Bloomfield was in choir.  Fr. Eduard Perrone, pastor of Assumption Grotto, was conducting the orchestra and choir in the orchestral Mass.  I had videotaped the homily by Fr. Logan, but the echo made it too difficult to understand.  I hope to have a direct feed in the future.  Father is a Cistercian monk so he wears his hood up rather than a biretta.  This was a Mass on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross.

Fr. Perrone is seen conducting here, with Mass in the background.

To view more photos see these below.

Note: Once again, please link to this post, rather than directly to my photo galleries, since I have a number of important links and explanations here). 


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