December 14, 2016 // Local

Catholic Conference for men scheduled for South Bend

More than 1,000 men will gather at the Century Center in downtown South Bend on Feb. 18 for the Rekindle the Fire Diocesan Men’s Conference, the largest annual gathering of Catholic men in Indiana.

For the seventh year in a row, Catholic men of all ages from across the Fort Wayne-South Bend diocese and beyond will participate in a daylong event that includes inspiring talks from nationally renowned speakers. Featured this year are Patrick Madrid, from Catholic Answers and Doug Barry from EWTN, who is back by popular demand to speak about spiritual warfare. Catholic Evangelist/musician Chris Padgett will also be featured.

Patrick Madrid

Author, radio host and Catholic apologist Patrick Madrid is among the country’s leading defenders of the Catholic faith. Host of the Patrick Madrid Show, he is also the author of such books as “Why Be Catholic?” and “How to do Apologetics.” A lifelong Catholic, he earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and master’s degree in dogmatic theology from Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. Madrid has conducted countless teaching seminars on Catholic themes across the world.

Doug Barry

Doug Barry, a devoted husband and father of five, is the founder and director of the Catholic ministry RADIX. “Battle Ready” is a mission of RADIX that aims to help strengthen and encourage the soldiers of Christ to be aware of, prepared for and engaged in the spiritual fight in which men find themselves. Since 1992, he has traveled nationally and internationally to help spread and defend the Catholic faith. Barry is also co-host of EWTN’s “Life on the Rock.”

Chris Padgett

Storyteller and musician Chris Padgett is a husband and father of nine children who brings alive the message of God’s love shared through powerful storytelling and uplifting music. Padgett entered the Catholic Church in 1999 and has since been a passionate champion of the faith. He earned a master’s degree in theology from Franciscan University and is pursuing a doctorate in sacred theology from the International Marian Research Institute in Dayton, Ohio.

The theme for this year’s conference, “Takin’ it to the Streets,” will be embodied in a dynamic, spirit-building experience to help men grow closer to Christ, equipping them with the courage, wisdom and strength to “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature” in their daily lives. The faith-filled experience begins at 9 a.m. and includes an afternoon Mass celebrated by the Most Reverend Kevin C. Rhoades, Bishop of Fort Wayne-South Bend. The sacrament of reconciliation will be available throughout the day. Catholic vendors will also be present to sell religious goods.

The cost to attend Rekindle the Fire is $40 until Dec. 31, $45 after. Registration includes lunch and coffee. To purchase a registration for someone for Christmas, or to register yourself, visit or call 260-452-6875.

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