Since returning last Sunday from the four-day Courage/EnCourage conference, where I spoke about healing sexual wounds with the help of the saints, I have wanted to write about what it was like for me to witness the vital work done by the Catholic apostolate that ministers to same-sex-attracted men and women as well as their relatives, spouses, and friends.
But I didn’t know what to say. There was something numinous about the experience. The deep devotion of the members of Courage (the branch of the apostolate encompassing same-sex-attracted men and women) and EnCourage (the branch encompassing family members and friends), the workings of grace in lives that were marked by a deep sharing in the mystery of the Cross—these things were humbling, awe-inspiring. Although my own cross is different, I myself was comforted and encouraged by my fellow attendees and speakers, including Father Emmerich Vogt, O.P., of the 12-Step Review (whose The Freedom to Love: Recovery and the Seven Deadly Sins is a valuable addition to the library of any Catholic seeking spiritual healing).
It wasn’t until yesterday, four days after returning from the conference, that I realized what I most wanted to share with you about it. The realization came during a conversation with a friend who is a recent convert to the Catholic faith.