Iowa Faith Formation Conference slated


Church leaders, staffers, volunteers and all Catholics interested in the future of vocations and the church’s mission are urged to attend the Iowa Faith Formation Conference in Ames on March 14-15.

Dr. Edward Hahnenberg, an associate professor of theology at Xavier University in Cincinnati, will speak on “Ministry at the Margins: The Call to Serve Christ’s Mission Today.”

“He is not only knowledgeable in his subject area of ministry, but he is very easy to understand,” said IlaMae Hanisch, coordinator of ministry formation and adult/family formation for the Davenport Diocese.  She heard him speak at a Minnesota conference in spring 2009. “I would highly recommend anyone who has an opportunity to hear him to do so. They won’t be disappointed. He is affirming and challenging at the same time.”

Hahnenberg’s talk will take a “new look” at strategies to help ministers serve others and aims to renew ministers’ spirituality.


The theologian teaches courses in theological method, ecclesiology, liturgy and contemporary Catholicism, and earned a Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame in 2002. He has written two books — “Ministries: A Relational Approach” and “A Concise Guide to the Documents of Vatican II” — and numerous articles in academic and pastoral journals.

“His writings encourage those in ministry to ask the question ‘Why does ministry exist?’” Hanisch said. It exists to serve. “So the question is really, ‘How do we live out the Spirit’s call to ministry?’”

The conference will take place from 7-9 p.m. March 14 and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 15 at the Gateway Hotel and Conference Center, 100 Green Hills Drive, Ames. To sign up, visit Cost is $70 until Feb. 21 and $75 after Feb. 21. Room rate is $89 at the Gateway Hotel for those who mention the Iowa Faith Formation Conference by Feb. 21. The hotel’s phone number is (515) 292-8600.

The conference, held every two years, is this year a collaboration of all four Iowa dioceses.

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