Voice of the Faithful's 2021 Conference Re–Membering the Church: Moving Forward will look closely at the body of the Church to see how structure, power, participation, and accountability can be brought together within the Church to fulfill its mission of bringing Christ to the world.
The online Zoom conference takes place Oct. 22-23, 2021. At 7 p.m., Oct. 22, conference registrants can gather for free Zoom listening sessions to talk about issues affecting the church today. The full-day conference on Oct. 23 will begin at 8:30 a.m., as registrants gather in a Zoom waiting room for the 9 a.m. start. The cost will be $50. Undergraduate students will be admitted free when using the link below or filling out the mail-in registration form.
VOTF supports a vision in the Church of openness and respect between hierarchy and the laity, more inclusivity within the church, and collaborations that lead to more activities and initiatives within the church that reflect lay voices. As outlined at a previous VOTF conference, “There is no body without its members. There are no members without participation. There is no participation without mutual recognition and accountability. Structural change is possible. Accountability is necessary. Re-membering the church is essential.”
Two featured speakers at the conference will offer their views on re–membering the Church. Speaking first on the morning of Oct. 23 will be Sister Carol Zinn, S.S.J. Ph.D. She is Leadership Conference of Women Religious executive director and serves as Saint John Vianney Center consultant for women religious community health and transition. Formerly, she served as United Nations Economic and Social Council consultant. Following Sr. Carol’s Q&A period, Prof. Massimo Faggioli, Ph.D., will address the conference. Prof. Faggioli spoke at VOTF’s 2018 Conference, and his return is highly anticipated. He is a professor of theology and religious studies at Villanova University, a prolific author, and a leading international authority on Catholic Church history and ecclesiology, the inner workings of the Church.
Also during VOTF’s 2021 Conference, a panel comprising women liturgy leaders from the Paulist Center Boston faith community will discuss lay-led liturgies, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, and VOTF leaders will offer presentations on VOTF projects in diocesan financial transparency, Church governance by and through lay involvement in Diocesan Financial Councils, adherence to protection of children guidelines in parishes and dioceses, and women’s emerging voices in the Catholic Church.