DECATUR — The Diocesan Adult Enrichment Conference (DAEC) will be held on Sunday, Sept. 30 and Monday, Oct. 1 at the Decatur Conference Center and Hotel, 4191 US 36 West in Decatur. The theme of this year’s DAEC is “Who Do You Say That I Am?”
The 2018 DAEC is being held about a month earlier than in previous years. “We decided to try something different this year,” says Christine Malmevik, the diocesan director for Catechesis and the chairperson of the 2018 DAEC. “We think it makes sense to have it earlier in the school year, rather than later.”
The 21st biennial event is open to all adults interested in deepening their appreciation and understanding of the Catholic faith and the role of discipleship, says Malmevik. Many of the participants are expected to be teachers at Catholic schools or in parish schools of religion, however pastors, parish staff members, liturgists, musicians, youth leaders, parish committee members and volunteers will all find the workshop sessions helpful.
Malmevik says that the fourth diocesan synod — along with the most recent diocesan focus on discipleship and stewardship as a way of life — prompted the planning of this year’s DAEC conference. She adds that DAEC speakers were chosen to help adult Catholics develop a relationship with Christ and to help others to know and love him, too.
This year’s keynote speaker is David O’Brien, who is a popular speaker, theology teacher at St. Leo University in Tampa, Fla., and the author of There’s a Beer in my Handbag: Unusual Thoughts about Everyday Faith. On Sunday, he will speak about “Missionary disciples: Living our faith in everyday lives.” On Monday, his topic will be “Who is Christ to me? Does my faith dramatically impact my life?”
Each day of the conference begins with Morning Prayer, followed by the keynote speaker presentation. Then participants will be able to attend three breakout sessions that take place; one in the morning and two in the afternoon. The topics of the sessions vary widely — as do the session presenters — so there will be something for everyone, Malmevik notes. Various publishers, organization and vendors will have materials on display and for sale.
On Sunday only, Bishop Thomas John Paprocki will celebrate Mass at 4:45 p.m. and an optional buffet dinner ($19 each) and concert will follow at 6:30 p.m. The entertainment that evening will be provided by Oddwalk Ministries, who will offer an evening of music, story-telling and worship.
Cost for the conference, before Sept. 15 is $55 for the entire conference or $45 for Sunday or Monday only. After Sept. 15, the fee increases to $60 for the entire conference or $50 for Sunday or Monday only. Checks should be payable to the Office for Catechesis and mailed to Office for Catechesis, DAEC 2018, Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, 1615 W. Washington St., Springfield, IL 62702-4757. To register and pay online or for more conference information, go to www.dio.org/catechesis/daec. Of course, questions can also be addressed to Chris Malmevik at: (217) 698-8500, ext. 178 or .