Here’s the personal story: I was newly converted to the Catholic faith. I had left my beautiful vicarage in the English countryside and was unemployed and didn’t quite know what we were going to do and somewhere or other I met this bubbly, enthusiastic, somewhat eccentric Englishwoman named Joanna Bogle.
Joanna was an established writer, journalist and book author. She met me outside Westminster Cathedral in London and was thrilled to hear my conversion story and took me to Army and Navy for a cup of tea in the cafeteria and invited me to join the Catholic Writer’s Guild. I went along–even though by then I had hardly published anything at all. She introduced me to some people, and I met Tom Longford who liked my idea for a book of English conversion stories like Surprised by Truth. So my first book idea was published and I went on from there. Joanna has stayed in touch over the years, and she’s here in the USA to do some work for EWTN so I have invited her to come to Greenville and join us for a day conference. After that she’s heading up to Washington for the March for Life before flying back to the damp lands.
Joseph Pearce I also met while in England. I began writing for his magazine, St Austin Review, and when he was visiting from Ave Maria he and his wife stopped in for a visit in our home in Chippenham. Little did we imagine that some five years later we would both be living in Greenville, South Carolina, tapping and typing–with him having an increasing reputation as one of the best English literary biographers, and me toiling away in our little parish.
So why don’t you come and meet Joanna and Joseph. The Day conference will be an informal affair–no big deal. It’s at Our Lady of the Rosary Church. It only costs $15.00 and that includes lunch. The talks will be interesting and fun. Joanna and Joseph are two of the best speakers as well as writers around. Because he lives in Greenville, Joseph will be there most of the day, and usually to hear him you would have a much heftier registration fee.
It all happens on Saturday, January 21. Here’s the program for the day: Call the parish office to register in advance: (864) 422 1648
8:30 – Registration and Refreshments9:00 – Deacon Ballard - Opening Comments - Why English Catholicism is Important for Americans Today9:15 – Fr Longenecker - Merry Ole’ England - Life in the English Middle Ages9:45 - Joanna Bogle - Feasts and Seasons - How to Celebrate the Catholic Faith English Style10:30 – Break10:45 – Joseph Pearce - The Jolly Prophet - The Importance of G.K.Chesterton Today11:30 – Fr Longenecker - C.S.Lewis and J.R.R.Tolkien - Conversion and Catholicism12:00 - Lunch – Book Signings12:45 - Holy Rosary Before the Image of Our Lady of Walsingham1:15 – Joseph Pearce - Searching for Shakespeare - Was Shakespeare Catholic?2:00 – Break2:15 – Joanna Bogle - Catholicism in Tension - The Catholic Church in Britain Today3:00 – Plenary Session – Questions3:15 – Deacon Ballard – Closing Comments3:30 – Departure4:00 – Confessions, Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction
5:15 – Parish Vigil Mass