LINCOLN (SNR) - Matthew Kelly, a popular Catholic evangelist and New York Times best-selling author, will lead a one-day retreat at Cathedral of the Risen Christ in Lincoln Saturday, May 21, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Titled, "Living Every Day with Passion and Purpose," the retreat is meant to inspire attendees to apply "the genius of Catholicism" to everyday life.
"Matthew Kelly always says that our lives change when our habits change," said parishioner Jill Korta, who is coordinating the event. "He will challenge us to do concrete things."
She said participants can expect to be engaged during Mr. Kelly’s, "inspirational, interactive talks…. He is a phenomenal storyteller, extremely bright, extremely wise… and funny."
The retreat will focus on how all people can incorporate the Catholic faith into every aspect of life, including work, relationships, finances, health, parenting and community involvement.
Mrs. Korta first met Mr. Kelly when he spoke in Lincoln about a year and a half ago. She accompanied him for a presentation at Pius X High School (where her husband, Tom, is principal). She also coordinated a reception at the Blessed John XXIII Center before his evening talk at Cathedral, so they had quite a bit of time to interact.
Mr. Kelly’s presentation that evening, "Is Catholicism Still Relevant," ended up being standing-room only.
"We packed the Cathedral," parishioner Jill Korta recalled. "We had people in the aisles."
Mr. Kelly, who has been writing and speaking since he was only 19 years old, provided a great deal of inspiration and encouragement.
"He speaks with wisdom that surpasses his years," Mrs. Korta said. "And he puts it into a language that we can understand."
Mrs. Korta believes that Mr. Kelly’s enthusiastic reception in Lincoln was one of the reasons he decided to bring his new retreat program to the Cathedral of the Risen Christ. She was happy to accept the opportunity to coordinate the event, which is attracting interest from all three Nebraska dioceses, as well as neighboring dioceses to the east and south.
The one-day retreat will include musical praise and worship led by Mr. Kelly’s special guest, Eliot Morris.
"When I asked Matthew about Eliot Morris, he just raved about him," Mrs. Korta said.
Mr. Morris is a professional singer/songwriter who has toured with James Taylor, Counting Crows and John Mayer, among other popular artists. One of his songs, "This Colorful World" has been used in a commercial for Crayola crayons.
Mr. Morris wrote in his online journal that Matthew Kelly, "has had an enormous impact on my life." Mr. Morris’ father encouraged him to make contact with the speaker about leading praise and worship at one of Mr. Kelly’s events.
As it turned out, Mr. Kelly had seen Mr. Morris perform at a Counting Crows concert and was already a fan. The two paired up to make the "Living Every Day with Passion and Purpose" retreats more meaningful and memorable.
The agenda for the day will include an opening session of praise and worship with Mr. Morris, followed by two morning talks with a short break in between. From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., participants will be invited to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Lunch will also be provided at that time. The afternoon repeats this schedule with praise and worship and two more talks.
Mrs. Korta noted that retreat participants can attend the 7:30 a.m. Mass at Cathedral prior to the retreat, as well as the 5 p.m. vigil Mass after Mr. Kelly’s closing statements.
The $50 fee to attend the event includes lunch, light snacks, and all retreat materials.
All are welcome to attend, but Mrs. Korta noted that tickets are selling briskly. Since seating is limited, she said, "The demand is high. Don’t wait!"
To learn more about Matthew Kelly, visit his website at www.dynamiccatholic.com. For information about Eliot Morris, go to his site at www.eliotmorris.com.
For more information about the event, please contact Jill Korta at 402-432-8083.