by Susan Fotovich McCabe
Special to The Leaven
OVERLAND PARK — Ask a woman and she’ll tell you that when women put their heads together, good things happen. This year marks the sixth consecutive year of one of those bright ideas — the Catholic Women’s Conference.
The April 4 event will be held at Church of the Ascension in Overland Park from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Conference co-organizers Linda Spencer and Kathy Jennison said the conference, “Living in Truth,” calls women to live their lives in the same likeness as Christ and the church.
The impetus for the first conference in 2015 was to create an “equal opportunity” alternative (and more) to the archdiocesan men’s annual conference, Spencer said.
“One day, a group of us women got together and asked, ‘Why can’t we do that?’” said Jennison. “The result was an archdiocesan conference open to women of any faith. And it has been a great idea!”
Each year, the conference features a dynamic speaker and this year is no different. Back by popular demand is syndicated Catholic talk show host, author and journalist Teresa Tomeo. Tomeo’s conference theme, “Me, Myself and I: Finding Real Happiness in a Selfie- Absorbed World,” is designed to help women find happiness in a world of noise and conflict.
Some of that conflict may be on a global stage, while others may experience it within their own families and personal lives, Tomeo said.
“We are on a mission to warn people, especially women, of becoming ‘absorbed, bleached and digested’ into the culture,” she said.
Each year, the conference speaks to women who are interested in bonding with like-minded women in the church, interested in growing stronger in their faith and authentically living their lives as wives, moms, sisters, daughters, grandmothers and professionals.
It differs from secular women’s conferences, said Spencer, in that it offers the Catholic perspective and fosters a commitment to “be a disciple of Christ.”
“This is an opportunity to celebrate our ‘feminine genius’ as Pope St. John Paul II encouraged us to do, and it’s just great fun!” Spencer said.
The Catholic Women’s Conference is $25 for advance registration and $30 at the door. Doors open at 7:30 a.m. The conference will begin with an 8 a.m. Mass celebrated by Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann. There will also be time reserved for a Q&A session with Tomeo. To register, visit the website.
“We want every woman to know that they are not alone. Christ is with her, the church is with her. We care about her everyday needs,” said Spencer. “Every woman who leaves the conference should feel inspired to know she is a daughter of the King.
“Sometimes, women tell us this was just what they needed. We pray that the person who needs to hear this comes to the conference.”