Take a deep dive into a specific ministry topic or concern when you register for the 2020 Mid-Atlantic Congress Intensives.

The 2020 MAC offers single and multi-day intensive courses in parish renewal, cultural competence, and parish engagement.

Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers

Wednesday, January 29–31, 2020

Training of Trainers Workshop

Starting at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, January 29

On behalf of the Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church, the goal of the Training of the Trainers for Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers is that ministry leaders who attend these trainings increase their capacity to welcome, receive, and encourage all emerging cultural groups to assume their role of leadership in the Church and, in turn, to train other ministry leaders to do the same. This formation program aims to prepare ministry leaders to:

  • Articulate the general outlines of a theology and spirituality of ministry in intercultural      settings, including the manner in which the Magisterium understands the concepts of evangelization, the New Evangelization, and inculturation.
  • Increase awareness regarding how to communicate appropriately with persons and groups in cultures other than one's own.
  • Increase awareness regarding how to communicate effectively with persons and groups in cultures other than one's own.
  • Gain the ability to identify and articulate patterns of prejudice that impede intergroup interaction.
  • Provide a rationale for the inclusion and integration of diverse cultural groups into the life and mission of the parish and diocese.
  • Teach the content of the five modules with confidence.

The Training of Trainers Workshop provides an opportunity for ministers to attain a foundational first level of competence in intercultural relations and communications. It is also designed to orient trainers to methodology, strategies, and activities suited to teach the content of the program.

Fee: $190 (includes lunch)


The Church in Crisis: A Way Forward for Catholic Laity

Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020--8:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

The clergy sexual abuse crisis has been a time of great reckoning for the Catholic Church in the United States and around the world. Despite the great damage done, however, we hold firm to Our Lord’s promise that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against” his Church (Mt 16:18). The crisis has opened the door for Catholic laity to respond to God’s desires for the Church and to help bring about a new beginning. Catholic laity have the opportunity and responsibility to work to renew and bring hope to a broken Church, but many do not know where to begin. 

This intensive will equip lay leaders to begin this process of renewal in their communities. In three 45-minute sessions, including lunch, participants will: 

  • Gain a fuller knowledge of the crisis in our Church, including how and why events unfolded the way they did;
  • Discuss how the revelations around the crisis have affected people’s view of the Church; and
  • Share their experiences and propose solutions.

Fee: $99.00 (includes lunch)

Registration Limit: Maximum of 75 people


Healing Our Church Seminar: Parish Tools to Empower the Lay

Friday, Jan. 31, 2020--10:45 am-1:00 pm

The continuing waves of news about sexual abuse by clergy and the cover-up by some Church leaders has left many of the faithful angry and shaken in their relationship with the Church. From research and practical experience, we know that small groups are highly effective vehicles to help the laity to face the crisis head on, begin the healing process, and move to decisive action to ensure the safety of our children and the reform of our Church.

Join Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president of RENEW International, as she shares feedback from parish listening sessions, interaction with clergy and parish leaders, and learnings from RENEW’s Healing Our Church small-group process. 

This seminar will include reflections on the twin crises and a small-group experience to help participants process their feelings. The seminar will also provide effective tools to equip parish leaders to help their parishioners find a path forward. 

Participants will receive copies of Healing Our Church, a small-group faith-sharing book that addresses the crises, along with a selection of resources suitable for use in a variety of ways and in different settings. Lunch will be provided.

Fee: $35.00 (includes book and lunch)

Registration Limit: None


Praying and Singing with Children

Friday, Jan. 31, 2020--11:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Join GIA Publication’s Michael Silhavy and David Anderson for a three-part, full-day intensive on Praying and Singing with Children

Starting at 11:00, Michael and David will lead you through general principles, how to prepare and what resources to use, and best practices on how to pray with children in different settings. Network with other leaders who work with children while two of GIA’s best clinicians share their wisdom and experience in this ministry.

Here are details on each of the three sessions.

11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Session One: General Principles of Liturgy and Music with Children

  • The intersection of prayer, ritual and liturgy
  • What you need to know—or may have forgotten—as found in the Directory for Masses with Children
  • Balancing age appropriate prayer and music while preparing children for the future
  • The liturgical year and calendar

1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m.

Session Two: Assisting the Classroom Teacher and Catechist with Preparing and Leading Prayer

  • Sharing the resources you need
  • Forming liturgical ministers, not assigning jobs
  • Writing prayers and creating prayer services
  • Music leading skills for teachers

3:00 p.m.–4:30 p.m.

Session Three:  Praying with Children

  • Preparation for Sunday and school mass
  • Liturgy of the Hours: Morning Prayer and Prayer to End the Day
  • Meditative Prayer, Praying in the Spirit of Taizé
  • Journaling
  • Lectio Divina and Visio Divina: Praying with Scripture and Artwork

Fee: Free (lunch is on your own)

Registration Limit: None


Growing an Engaged Church: The Faith Community Challenge

Friday, Jan. 31, 2020--11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

This Intensive is specifically for clergy--priests and deacons. Based on the recent research that identifies the decline in denominational membership, especially among young adults, this day-long Intensive will focus on the implications and implementation of that research in our parishes.

Session 1: Going, Going, Gone … the Dynamics of Disaffiliation in Young Catholics

This session will identify the underlying dynamics that lead to disaffiliation, describe the factors that reinforce those dynamics, and examine the implications for parish life, liturgy, and pastoral ministry. 

Session 2: Crafting a Religious Identity in a Secular Age 

This session will look at questions like where are young people meeting their spiritual hungers and what is the role of Church in this new, normative age? This session will propose pastoral strategies that actualize the strengths of Catholicism in a postmodern age.

Session 3: Engagement: The Ministerial Paradigm for the New Evangelization 

In this session we identify the practical pastoral responses and strategies that can enhance affiliation and engagement with the faith community and examine implications for parish and school life, vocational discernment, liturgy, and pastoral ministry. 

Session 4: Pastoral Leadership for an Engaged Church

This session will propose characteristics of the engaged, evangelizing faith community and highlight the mission to which Jesus calls us.


Fee: $99.00 (includes lunch)

Registration Limit: Limited to clergy