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FARGO (ND) FORUM

October 8, 2000

Catholic assembly lineup drawing wide interest

by Erin Hemme Froslie

A Roman Catholic assembly in Fargo is attracting national attention with a lineup of well-known speakers and authors.

People from more than 30 states, the Bahamas, the Philippines and Canada have registered to attend the Marian Eucharistic Congress, which will be held Oct. 13-15 in the Fargo Civic Center.

The draw: a list of speakers who are prominent featured guests and hosts of Catholic television and radio.

'I had one woman from Milwaukee (Wis.) who called and said, You have a mini-television program happening,' said Mary Kay Starry, one of the organizers.

Hosted by the Diocese of Fargo. the congress will examine dogma and doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church. Specific topics to be addressed include: Fatima and Our Human Condition, Eucharistic Adoration: The Supreme Devotion Calls Us to Holiness: and History Reveals: God Speaks Through Nature's Signs and Wonders.

The list of 12 speakers include the Rev. Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life; the Rev. Pablo Straub, a missionary in Mexico; and the Rev. Benedict Groeschel, director of the office for spiritual development of the Archdiocese of New York.

They're some of the biggest names and top speakers in the Catholic Church, said Brad Starry, Mary Kay's husband and another organizer.

This is the fourth Marian Eucharistic Congress held in Fargo. It's scheduled every two years.

Organizers, all lay people, are expecting close to 3,000 people to attend each day of the congress. More than 2,300 have already registered. The assembly also will be broadcast live worldwide through St. Joseph Radio, a non-profit volunteer station dedicated to clarifying Catholic beliefs and practices.

People want to hear what these speakers have to say, Brad said. They've read their books and seen them on TV.

The excitement around this year's congress is a blessing to organizers who have watched the biannual event grow.

Run entirely by volunteer labor, the congress is only advertised to regional dioceses. Anyone else who attends it hears about the event through word of mouth.

We know this is divinely orchestrated, said Mary Kay. We're just the little hands and feet of God.

Priests for Life
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