MCC Annual Assembly FAQs

When and Where

The Missouri Catholic Conference (MCC) Annual Assembly will be held on Saturday, October 6, 2018 at Helias Catholic High School in Jefferson City from 9:00 am to 4:15 pm. The address for Helias Catholic High School is 1305 Swifts Hwy, Jefferson City, MO 65109. The school is handicapped accessible.


This year’s theme is Pope Francis at Five Years: the Church at the peripheries. This year, sessions are inspired by a quote from Pope Francis:

“The church is called to come out of herself and to go to the peripheries, not only geographically, but also the existential peripheries: the mystery of sin, of pain, of injustice, of ignorance and indifference to religion, of intellectual currents and of all misery.”

How Much Does it Cost?

The event is FREE (however, donations will be accepted), and includes lunch! If you are riding a bus, there is a $10/person or couple, $20/family bus fee.


To pre-register, click here or call us at (800) 456-1679. Pre-registration is strongly recommended so that we have adequate meals and supplies, but you can sign up at the event if absolutely necessary.

FREE Gift!

The first 400 people who pre-register and attend will receive a free copy of the devotional “Pope Francis Celebrates Faith and Family”.

Event Schedule

9:00 am – 10:00 am Registration (Commons)

10:00 am – 11:00 am Opening Session/Keynote address (gym)

11:15 am – 12:15 pm Morning workshops 

12:15 pm – 1:15 pm Lunch (free)

1:15 pm – 2:15 pm Afternoon workshops

2:30 pm – 3:00 pm Closing Session (gym)

3:15 pm – 4:15 pm Closing Mass (gym)

Keynote Address

Bishop Joseph Perry of the Archdiocese of Chicago will deliver the keynote address.

Bishop Perry, originally, a priest of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, was ordained a priest by the late Archbishop William Edward Cousins, May 24, 1975 at St. John Cathedral, Milwaukee.  After an eighteen month assignment as associate pastor of St. Nicholas Parish, Milwaukee, he was assigned to the Tribunal offices of the Archdiocese in December 1976 and was sent for graduate studies in canon law at The Catholic University of America, Washington D.C.  His priestly ministry has been spent with ecclesiastical law and education working primarily in the church courts as an advocate, then as a judge in the court of appeals that services the suffragan Dioceses of Superior, LaCrosse, Green Bay and Madison, and as conciliation and arbitration clerk.  In 1983 he was appointed judicial vicar for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, a post he held for two six-year terms until his appointment as pastor of All Saints Parish, Milwaukee, in June 1995.

He served as the chaplain of the St. Thomas More Lawyers Society of Wisconsin an association of Catholic lawyers and judges.  Until his appointment as bishop, he was also an adjunct professor of canon law studies at Marquette University Law School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Sacred Heart Seminary, Hales Corners, Wisconsin.  As satellites to his duties as auxiliary bishop, he functions as an adjunct professor of canon law at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary, Mundelein, Illinois, and associate judge in the Second Instance Court of Appeals for the Dioceses configured to the Province of Chicago. 

Bishop Perry is National Chaplain for the Knights of St. Peter Claver and Ladies Auxiliary and also Vice-President of the Board for the National Black Catholic Congress, Baltimore, Maryland.

January 28, 2010, Cardinal Francis George appointed Bishop Perry Postulator for the Diocesan Phase of the Cause for Sanctity of Father Augustus Tolton, first priest of African descent in the United States who labored in the Diocese of Alton (now Springfield, Illinois) and the Archdiocese of Chicago


Five workshops will be offered in the morning and five workshops will be offered in the afternoon. When you check-in that morning, you will get a packet that shows where and when the workshops will be held.

Note: When you register, you are asked to indicate your workshop preferences. This is only used to assign workshop rooms by size and level of interest. You may choose to attend any workshop on the day of the Assembly. Workshop times/selections are not decided until a week or two before the Annual Assembly.

Campus Ministry: A Field Hospital for Young Adults

Of the people who leave the Catholic Church, 74 percent do so between the ages of 10 and 20. The future of the Catholic Church has no greater dependence than on the missionary work of reaching out to young adults on college campuses, as it is likely the last chance for the Church to reach them before they leave the faith for good. This workshop will describe the ways in which campus ministry can truly serve as the field hospital Pope Francis is calling for, and as a model for how parishes can do the same for adolescents and young adults. Presenter: Troy Woytek, Director of Ministry, Catholic Student Center, Washington University, St. Louis, MO

Catholic Charities: Serving the Poor and Vulnerable in Missouri

The employees of Catholic Charities serve the poor and vulnerable in various capacities throughout the state of Missouri, helping those struggling with homelessness and addiction, as well as those facing an unexpected pregnancy or a natural disaster. Meet the leaders of the Catholic Charities organizations serving the four Missouri dioceses and hear directly from them about how they serve our fellow Missouri citizens who are living on the peripheries. Presenters:  Theresa Ruzicka, President of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of St. Louis; Chris Ice, CEO of Catholic Charities of Kansas City/St. Joseph; Maura Taylor, Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri; and Daniel Lester, Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Central and Northern Missouri

Protecting the Unborn: Legislative Victories

During a special session in the summer of 2017, Missouri lawmakers passed Senate Bill 5, a sweeping pro-life bill that put in place some of the most pro-life state laws in the country.  The abortion lobby has so far been unsuccessful in challenging the new law in court.  Come hear how Senate Bill 5, and other Missouri pro-life legislation, is saving lives and promoting programs that offer alternatives to abortion in Missouri, as well as prospects for pro-life bills in 2019. Presenter:  Deacon Sam Lee, Director of Campaign Life Missouri and Lobbyist, St. Louis, MO

Growing in Awareness of Human Trafficking:  Knowing is Power

Human trafficking is modern-day slavery, and exploits both children and adults.  Learn more about human trafficking and its causes, who the victims and predators are, who is most at risk, the role social media plays in promoting this practice, and what you can do to help abolish it.  This presentation will include firsthand experiences from a survivor who ministers to victims of prostitution, gender bias, and trafficking. Presenters:  Sister Jeanne Christensen, Sister of Mercy, Justice Advocate on Human Trafficking, Kansas City, MO and Kris Wade,  a Survivor, Co-founder and Executive Director of the Justice Project, Kansas City, MO

Immigration Law: Understanding a Complicated System

Immigration law is complicated to decipher on your own, so come hear the facts from a Missouri immigration judge who has been immersed in these issues for years in the courtroom. This workshop will outline basic immigration law and regulation, address what happens in Immigration Court and how cases are fought on appeal, and finally, answer questions about how people apply for immigration benefits outside of Immigration Court. Presenter: The Honorable Justin Howard, Immigration Judge, U.S. Immigration Court, Kansas City, MO

LGBTQIA: What’s a Catholic to Say?

How do we welcome and accompany those who experience discord between their sexual and gender identity and stay true to Church teaching? Come and learn about Pope Francis’ “Discipleship Roadmap” approach, and how it helps us reach this peripheral population. Presenter: Ed Hogan, Academic Dean and Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary, St. Louis, MO

To Live or Die: A Jury Decides

Have you ever imagined the fear of being wrongly convicted of a capital crime? Or wondered what it would be like to serve on a jury in a death penalty case? This presentation brings together two individuals who have lived out these scenarios: Larry Hildebrand and Joe Amrine. Larry sat on the jury that convicted Joe of capital murder, though Joe would later be exonerated of the crime. Come hear their stories of regret, fear and redemption and learn why the death penalty is wrong for America. Presenters : Joe Amrine, the 111th Person Exonerated Nationally from Death Row, Kansas City, MO, and Larry Hildebrand, Deacon, Diocese of Jefferson City, Jefferson City, MO

The Opioid Crisis:  A Catholic Response

Similar to national trends, Missouri finds itself in an “opioid crisis,” as  opioid use, misuse, and overdoses continue to climb. During this workshop, learn about the current state of the “opioid crisis,” including its development, its effects on communities, and how Catholic moral teachings can be applied to the situation, as well as how the church and Catholic healthcare can contribute to finding a solution. Presenter: Nicole Allcock, Pharm. D., BCPS, FASHP, former Director of Pharmacy for Southeast Hospital, Cape Girardeau, MO

Pope Francis’ Theology of Accompaniment:  The Church Serving the Peripheries

In commemorating the Fifth Anniversary of the Pontificate of Pope Francis, we celebrate his vision of the Church who humbly serves those on the peripheries by accompaniment. The Church, modeling herself after the very example of Christ, goes out and accompanies all in their poverty and need with Christ’s compassion, advocates their God-given dignity and serves them with Christ’s love. Living the call to be the Catholic Church, as well as being faithful in the Lord’s call for our advocacy and legislative efforts, is truly fulfilled as we put into practice Pope Francis’ Theology of Accompaniment. Presenter:  Most Reverend Mark Rivituso, Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of St. Louis, St. Louis, MO

Border Line: Our Catholic Commitment to Security, Mercy and Truth in Immigration Policy

Nothing has ignited more emotion than the recent practice of separating migrant families at the southern U.S. border. What does the Catholic Church teach about border security and the needs of migrants? What exactly is “asylum” and why do people risk everything to ask for it?  What don’t immigrants just enter our country legally?  This workshop will dispel myths, explain Catholic social teaching and offer practical ideas for a moral response to immigration issues. Presenters: Kristen Walentik, Bilingual immigration attorney, St. Francis Community Services, Catholic Legal Assistance Ministry and Karen Wallensak, Executive Director, St. Francis Community Services, St. Louis, MO

Parking/Carpooling/Bus Transportation


Parking is available to the west and north of Helias Catholic High School (see map). Watch for signs and volunteers to direct you to the appropriate entrance.


If you are interested in carpooling with others from your area, please indicate that on your registration form. We will obtain your permission before we share your contact information with others.

Bus Transportation

Bus fee: $10/person or couple, $20/family

You will be contacted by the MCC or a diocesan agency about the fee and the pick-up/drop off times. Please arrive 15 minutes before the scheduled pick up time.

St. Louis

  • Cardinal Rigali Center, 20 Archbishop May Dr, St. Louis

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 6:30 am DROP OFF – 7:15 pm

(park in big parking lot on side of building)

  • Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish (North County), 1115 S Florissant Rd, Ferguson

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 7:00 am DROP OFF – 6:45 pm

(park in front lot)

  • Wentzville Walmart, I-70 and Pearce Blvd

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 7:45 am DROP OFF – 6:00 pm

(park at end of lot)

Kansas City

  • St. Charles Borromeo Parish, 900 NE Shady Lane Dr, Kansas City

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 6:30 am DROP OFF – 7:00 pm

(park in southeast parking lot)

  • St. Mark Parish, 3736 S Lee’s Summit Rd, Independence

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 7:00 am DROP OFF – 6:30 pm

(park in farthest north parking lot)

How to make payment:

  1. Checks can be sent to the following address:

Respect Life Office

The Catholic Center

20 West Ninth Street

Kansas City, MO 64105

“MCC 50th Anniversary” in memo line

2. Electronic payment can be made on either website – or . 

  • Each has a “Donate” button on the Home page that takes the user to one of two payment sites that are basically identical:  Respect Life Office Donations / Human Rights Office Donations . 
  • Enter “$10.00” in the Amount field and select either, “General Respect Life Fund” or “General Human Rights Fund” in the drop down list and then fill out the debit/credit card information.

3. Call (816) 714-2375 to pay by debit/credit card.

4. Bring payment at the time of departure.


  • Springfield Catholic High School, 2340 S Eastgate Ave, Springfield

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 6:30 am DROP OFF – 7:00 pm

(park on 65 side of building)

  • Lebanon McDonald’s, 850 S Jefferson Ave, Lebanon

TENTATIVE PICK UP – 7:30 am DROP OFF – 6:00 pm

(park in back lot)

Check-in at the Annual Assembly

When you arrive, check-in at the tables in the “Commons” (cafeteria) to get your nametag and packet. Registration is broken out by the first letter of your last name. There will also be a separate registration for children attending child care (ages 4-12). Coffee will be available, but we ask that you keep it in the Commons.

Child Care

After you have checked-in, care for children ages 4-12 will be available throughout the day in the new gym. If your child requires a nap, please bring a mat for him/her to sleep on. If you child is not potty trained, please provide diaper products. Please register your child(ren) at the tables in the Commons after you have registered.

Service Project

Participants will have the opportunity to assemble hygiene bags for local needy families during the lunch hour. The location will be announced during the opening session.

What if I change my mind about the workshop I want to go to?

When you registered, you indicated your workshop preference. This is only used to assign workshop rooms by size and level of interest. You may choose to attend any workshop on the day of the Anniversary.


A deli lunch will be provided in the Commons. The meal is free, but donations will be accepted. Your name tag is your lunch ticket. The meal consists of a ham or turkey sandwich, chips, apple or banana, cookie, and bottled water. A vegetarian option is available upon request (please indicate that on your registration). There will be volunteers on hand to help you find a seat or carry your materials. If you have pre-registered for the Anniversary and need to cancel, please let us know so that we have an adequate amount of food.

Closing Mass

This special Mass, held at the conclusion of the Annual Assembly on Saturday afternoon, will count for your Sunday obligation. This Mass will be concelebrated by the bishops of Missouri.

Lost/Need Help

Throughout the day, volunteers wearing a red sash can help you find the registration area and workshops. You can also visit the Command Center in the teacher’s lounge for lost/found or for general questions.

Voter Registration 

Not yet registered to vote in Missouri? Take this important step at this year’s Annual Assembly, which will offer voter registration at check-in and throughout the day.

Dress Code

There will be moderate walking involved, so please wear comfortable shoes and “church clothes”.


You can reserve a room at Capitol Plaza Hotel (415 W McCarty St, Jefferson City, 573-635-1234) for the discounted rate of $99/night if you say you’re with the Missouri Catholic Conference. Limited rooms are available, so reserve as soon as you are able. You will be responsible for paying for your room.

Bring Friends!

The MCC Annual Assembly will be an experience you will never forget. We often get comments from participants that they look forward to coming every year. Share this flier with friends, family, co-workers, and anyone else who will enjoy this faith-filled day.

Show & Tell Us How Much You Love it!

If you attend the MCC Annual Assembly, let us know what you thought! We will post a collection of crowd-sourced photos and videos (photos/videos that participants take) from the event on our social media pages and website. Show and tell us—feel free to write a note, too—about your favorite part about the day and about the Missouri Catholic Conference.

Stay Involved with the MCC

We hope you will join us for the MCC Annual Assembly on October 6. Stay up-to-date with the MCC all year long by visiting our website, joining the MCC Catholic Advocacy Network (MOCAN), liking us on Facebook, and following us on Twitter.

Still Have Questions or Need to Cancel Your Registration?

Give us a call Monday – Friday, 8 am – 5 pm, (800) 456-1679 or (573) 635-7239, or email us at