Anaheim Religious Event Expected to Draw 20,000


About 20,000 people from six countries are expected to attend an annual three-day religious education congress next month at the Anaheim Convention Center.

“Imaging Love: Empowering Lives” is the largest catechetical event to be held each year in the world, said congress coordinator Adrian Whitaker. Hundreds of priests and bishops will welcome delegates from the United States, Canada, Poland, Japan, Australia and Jamaica at this year’s gathering, which begins Feb. 20.

“It invites us to open up our hearts to experience the pouring out of God’s outrageous, enduring, persistent, generous love,” said Edith Prendergast, director of the Los Angeles-based Office of Religious Education.

Dozens of speakers and Catholic theologians will put on 250 workshops covering all areas of religious education and catechetical leadership, Whitaker said. Many will deal with everyday issues such as spirituality in a pluralistic culture, health, ministry for youth and family relationships.

Archbishop Nguyen Van Thuan, vice president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace at the Vatican, will present workshops in Vietnamese and English. Other noted speakers include Archbishop Rembert Weakland, Archdiocese of Milwaukee, and Rev. Mario Vizcaino, who will deliver a keynote speech Feb. 22 with the Hispanic community in mind, Whitaker said.


Six general Vietnamese workshops will be held throughout the weekend.

The event will conclude with Cardinal Roger M. Mahony celebrating the Eucharist at 3:30 p.m. Feb. 22.

For registration information, call (213) 637-7332.