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Father Chris Alar, MIC (left), will be among the speakers at the North American Congress on Mercy, in Houston. Father Kaz Chwalek, MIC, is among the organizers of the event.

Second North American Congress on Mercy Set to Begin

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By Chris Sparks (Oct 2, 2016)
Just before the end of the extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy, the second North American Congress on Mercy (NACOM II) will take place Oct. 21-22, concluding on the Feast of St. John Paul II, the Great Mercy Pope, at Prince of Peace Catholic Community in Houston, Texas.

For the first time ever, the Marians Fr. Donald Calloway, Fr. Michael Gaitley, and Fr. Chris Alar will all be speaking at the same Congress.

"It is an honor to be speaking at the same event with zealous bishops and international speakers who are promoting God's unfathomable mercy," said Fr. Donald, vicar provincial of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception in the United States and Argentina. "NACOM is such a blessed event because it fires up the participants and inspires them to take the message of mercy back to their local areas and share it with their neighbors. I also think it is wonderful that this NACOM is in Texas because it is a central location, allowing people from both the East and West Coasts to be able to make it. It's going to be a packed event, so I highly encourage people to register early. I can't wait! See you there!"

The Congress takes on a unique importance this year for several reasons. "We're concluding the Jubilee Year of Mercy," said Fr. Chris Alar, MIC, director of the Association of Marian Helpers, "and we want to make sure that people fully understand this great opportunity to receive special graces. So in this congress, we hope to educate and inform people about the opportunity that still remains in this last month of the Year of Mercy. So that's one big reason. The other big reason is that the last three popes have reiterated that Divine Mercy is the most important message of our times. As Pope Benedict XVI said on Divine Mercy Sunday in 2006, 'Divine Mercy is not a secondary devotion but an integral dimension of Christian faith and prayer.'"

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, archbishop of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, will celebrate Mass for the Congress on St. John Paul II's feast day. Father Patrice Chocholski, STD, secretary general of the World Apostolic Congress on Mercy (WACOM) and rector of the St. John Vianney Shrine in Ars, France, will address the Congress via a video presentation.

Other notable speakers and guests include Most Rev. Eugenio Lira, general secretary for the Mexican Bishops' Conference; Most Rev. Edward B. Scharfenberger, bishop of Albany, New York; Fr. Seraphim Michalenko, MIC, former vice-postulator for St. Faustina's cause for canonization; Fr. Jan Machniak, personal representative to the Congress for the former private secretary to St. John Paul II, Cardinal Stanislaus Dziwisz; and the Eternal Word Television Network's president and COO, Doug Keck.

Before the Congress, a VIP dinner will be held on Thursday evening, Oct. 20, at the Wyndham Garden Hotel Willowbrook in Houston. Attendees will break bread with some of the speakers for the Congress and members of the Congregation of Marian Fathers, hear spiritual presentations, and have a chance to meet with some of their fellow devotees of Divine Mercy. Register soon — space is limited.

Congress organizers invite devotees of Divine Mercy from across the nation to come to Houston for this special two-day event at the close of the extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy, offering spiritually enriching presentations from inspiring, well-known speakers and powerful witnesses to God's love and mercy; Holy Mass; Eucharistic Adoration; Confession; and uplifting sacred music from several skilled local choirs.

Visit mercycongress.org or email [email protected] for more information and to register for the Congress and/or the VIP dinner.

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