Social distancing and the sacraments: How the coronavirus pandemic has changed our sense of communion

Posted by RENEW International on May 19, 2020 8:56:12 AM

America Magazine's Kerry Weber recently interviewed RENEW's president, Sr. Terry Rickard, and other Catholic thought-leaders about the spiritual, emotional and logistical challenges the pandemic and physical separation have brought us, but also about the  opportunities it presents for the Church as we move forward.

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Topics: sacraments, pandemic, COVID, social distancing

Two RENEW titles named finalists for "Excellence in Publishing" awards

Posted by RENEW International on May 8, 2020 2:28:00 PM

The Association of Catholic Publishers (ACP) has named RENEW's Healing Our Church and Sanando Nuestra Iglesia as finalists for the 2020 "Excellence in Publishing Awards." Healing Our Church, by Jerome Herauf and RENEW’s Charles Paolino, is a finalist in ACP's category of Resources for Ministry.

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Topics: sexual abuse, small faith sharing groups, small group, award

Film Highlights Sister Helen Prejean's Work Against Death Penalty

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 10, 2020 12:07:29 PM

A recent documentary features Sister Helen Prejean (Dead Man Walking), whose insights are the subject of RENEW International’s upcoming book Dignity and the Death Penalty: Evolution of Catholic Teaching. The film, titled SISTER, follows Sister Helen as she works on behalf of Oklahoma death row inmate Richard Glossip. The documentary, directed and filmed by Joe Cardona and José L. Vázquez, also explores the evolving ministry of Catholic women religious in America. WPBT PBS South Florida co-produced the film.

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Topics: capital punishment, death penalty, Sr. Helen Prejean

RENEW's Healing Our Church Well Received by Newark Parishes

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 10, 2020 10:39:52 AM

The Catholic Advocate, the newspaper of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark, NJ, has published an article on RENEW International’s Healing Our Church/Sanando Nuestra Iglesia. Healing Our Church is a small-group program that helps Catholics confront the twofold crises of sexual abuse by clergy and cover-up by Church leaders and envision a way forward for the Church. The program is available in both English and Spanish.

 The Advocate article cites positive feedback from several archdiocesan parishes that have participated in Healing Our Church.  The program is part of Forward in Faith Together: Our Road Ahead, the pastoral vision of Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., archbishop of Newark. It is intended for the lay faithful throughout the Church, to help them begin the healing process and move forward, with the clergy, as a family of faith.

The article appears in the March 11, 2020 issue of the Catholic Advocate and can be accessed here.

For more information about Healing Our Church, visit


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Posted by RENEW International on Mar 3, 2020 9:20:32 AM


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RENEW International Announces 40th Anniversary Capital Campaign: Forward at 40 at Mass of Thanksgiving

Posted by RENEW International on Nov 15, 2018 10:14:00 AM
RENEW International Announces
th  Anniversary Capital Campaign:  Forward at 40
at Mass of Thanksgiving
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Live Lent! cover photo hit the spot for this engineer

Posted by RENEW International on Aug 20, 2018 11:01:00 AM

I admit, I was hesitant to commit to a small group despite the friendly encouragement. I had some of the typical excuses–namely logistics and uncertainty of what I would be getting myself into.

However, I had a non-typical way of overcoming those excuses. I stopped in my tracks passing the sign-up table when I saw the cover of Live Lent! (Year A) because it was “a sign from God,” or, as it popped into my head at the time, “a pavement marking from God!”

Right after signing up, I texted a photo of the cover to my fellow Catholic traffic engineer friends with that caption. We are all fond of road signs, traffic lights, and pavement markings–the technical term for the lines painted on roads, including crosswalks like the one on the cover.

I am so thankful that the connection with the cover inspired me to put aside my excuses. I enjoyed the beautiful reflections of the book with my group. I have grown so much through the small groups, both in my faith and in my connection to the parish!

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Symposium on Parish Renewal Energizes Parish Leaders

Posted by RENEW International on May 7, 2018 11:09:00 AM

South Orange, NJ—Diocesan and parish leaders from the greater New York metro area gathered at Seton Hall University for the Monsignors Thomas Kleissler and Thomas Ivory Symposium on Parish Renewal. The event was hosted by RENEW International in partnership with The Center for Catholic Studies at Seton Hall and America Media. Over two hundred clergy and lay men and women listened to insights from Catholic thought leaders and engage in dialogue on topics vital to today’s Church.

The keynote speaker was William Simon, chairman of Parish Catalyst and author of Great Catholic Parishes. Simon addressed the four foundational practices he found in successful parishes. In his research, he found that great parishes share leadership; foster spiritual maturity and plan for discipleship; excel on Sunday; and evangelize.

The keynote was followed by four panelists, each an expert in one of the four foundational practices. Father Matt Malone, SJ of America Media acted as moderator. The four panelists—Chris Lowney, author of Everyone Leads; Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president of RENEW; Father Bismarck Chau, pastor of St. Patrick’s Pro-Cathedral in Newark, NJ; and Leisa Anslinger, director of Catholic Life and Faith—each spoke briefly before symposium attendees submitted questions.

A lively conversation ensued as panelists answered questions and explored new topics raised in participant table discussions. Following the panel discussion, a final table session produced a collection of takeaways for the participants which were shared with the room.

Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, archbishop of Newark, joined participants and panelists for evening prayer, sharing reflections about RENEW and the vision of its founders, Monsignors Kleissler and Ivory, who were present. “As a young priest in Detroit, I knew two things about Newark,” the cardinal said. “I knew it was in New Jersey, and I knew it had a wonderful program called RENEW.”

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RENEW notes 40th anniversary at Mid-Atlantic Congress

Posted by RENEW International on Mar 12, 2018 8:30:00 AM

RENEW continued its 40th-anniversary celebrations in February at the Mid-Atlantic Congress in Baltimore, Maryland. The congress opened with a Mass, celebrated by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manilla; immediately following the liturgy, everyone was invited to join us in the main exhibit space for a special RENEW celebration.

Sister Terry Rickard, OP, president and executive director of RENEW, addressed the crowd during a Facebook Live session and heard from many who participated in RENEW throughout the years. Attendees shared anniversary cake and light refreshments along with stories of their RENEW experiences. RENEW alumni wore with pride special green ribbons on their name badges.

Each year, RENEW offers attendees the chance to walk away with a sample set of our resources.

Ms. Adriana Visoso-Valverde was happy to have been selected as the 2018 MAC Raffle winner. She will be receiving a RENEW tote bag with a wide selection of Spanish-language RENEW Spanish resources.

Adriana is the associate director of formation programs for Instituto Fe y Vida which provides leadership training empowering Latino youth in churches and society nationally. She has been working with Fe y Vida for 19 years, recommending Spanish resources for groups all over the United States. Adriana attends St. Camillus

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Woodstock Business Conference joins RENEW International Becomes Ignatian Business Chapters

Posted by RENEW International on Feb 5, 2018 8:30:00 AM

RENEW International announces a new partnership with the former Woodstock Business Conference to promote moral leadership among Catholics at work, at home and in the community. As part of RENEW International, the newly renamed Ignatian Business Chapters (IBC) will expand into parishes around the country.

For 25 years, the Woodstock Business Conference operated under the sponsorship of the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University, forming university-based groups with Catholic business professionals to dialogue about moral issues in business. With the closing of the Center, a new identity was sought. As part of RENEW International, Ignatian Business Chapters will continue that work, expanding outreach and capitalizing on RENEW’s 40 years of experience establishing parish-based small groups. "IBC has found not only a new home but a new future as well with this partnership with RENEW," says John Fontana, Director of Ignatian Business Chapters.

Chapters will also benefit from RENEW International’s experience creating highly effective materials for small groups. The Dynamic Leader: Balancing Faith and Work is a new resource from RENEW, based on the work of Chris Lowney, renowned author on Catholic leadership. The resource was created to support the work of the Chapters and combines the Ignatian spirituality of the Jesuits with Lowney’s modern leadership insights to prompt meaningful thought and conversation, and provides an ideal launching pad for new groups.

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