Justice Clarence Thomas, Fr. John Corapi are a few of the faculty at our annual Summit . . .
If the early Christians kept their faith private, the Church would have remained a mustard seed in Israel. But because they were zealous to share it, the faith fast started growing into the mighty tree whose branches have been sheltering souls around the world for the past 20 centuries.
The early Christians’ work is not done, however. For the tree to grow and flourish, each generation of Christians is obligated to perform a duty so obvious that it’s often neglected: communicate the faith. Christians must not keep their faith in the cellar, but as Christ commanded, “Your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father” (Mt 5:16).
Inspired by the Lord’s command, “Communicating the Word” is the theme of the upcoming Annual Legatus Summit, Feb. 3-5 in Naples, Fla.
How can Legates better communicate the Word in their professional and personal lives? The Summit will offer helpful ways of doing so in a setting of spiritual refreshment, fellowship, good cheer and the occasional golf swing at the elegant Ritz-Carlton Resort.
A stellar lineup of speakers will give powerful testimonies about spreading the faith in everyday life. Presenters include Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, legendary Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz, and Supreme Knight Carl Anderson of the Knights of Columbus.
Legates will also hear from Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-FAM) president Austin Ruse, and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author David McCullough.
In addition to these lay leaders, the Summit will be graced with priests remarkable for their spiritual leadership. In addition to addressing the attendees, they will celebrate daily Mass, hear confessions and offer private spiritual direction.
The roster of reverends will include opening Mass celebrant Archbishop José Gómez of Los Angeles, Bishop Frank Dewane of the Venice, Fla., diocese, Bishop Sam Jacobs of the Houma-Thibodaux, La., diocese, and Fr. John Corapi SOLT, a man whose preaching has made him a living legend.
Indeed, Fr. Corapi’s journey to the priesthood is itself legendary. After becoming a millionaire businessman who lost everything to cocaine addiction, he had a road-to-Damascus experience that launched a vocation that has transformed countless lives. Besides speaking on the Summit’s second day, Fr. Corapi will conduct a two-hour retreat on day three.
Summit chair Keith Armato eagerly anticipates next February.
“The presentations, discussions and support derived from a local chapter are fuel allowing Legates to fulfill our mission to study, live and spread the faith,” said Armato, a member of the Chicago Chapter and member of Legatus’ board of governors. “But sometimes familiarity with a group can lead to a reduction in the efficacy of that fuel. A national Legatus Summit can often be the cure.”
Armato wants Legates from across the country “to experience a program carefully designed to bring us to a new level of understanding of how we can impact others in ‘Communicating the Word.’”
Last year’s Summit saw a record-setting 450 Legates congregate in California. According to Legatus conference director Laura Sacha, that number is on its way to being matched in California’s sunny Eastern counterpart — and possibly exceeded.
“In 2010 we saw new energy flow through the Summit, and we’re hopeful that ‘they will come’ in 2011,” she says. “A summit is so many things — spiritual, first and foremost, educational and fun. Your Legatus experience simply isn’t complete until you’ve attended a summit.”
Matthew A. Rarey is Legatus Magazine’s editorial assistant.