MCC 50th Anniversary Celebration

Celebrating 50 years of the Missouri Catholic Conference in 2017

Msgr. Witt’s Catholic Education workshop—click photo to listen.








Sue Thayer’s pro-life workshop

CRS Vice President Joan Rosenhauer’s social justice workshop

The  Missouri Catholic Conference, the public policy agency for the Catholic Church in Missouri, is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2017. The MCC invites you to participate in a special anniversary celebration at St. Joseph Cathedral in Jefferson City on Saturday, Oct. 7. The event includes an address by Papal Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre. Since 1967, the MCC has been the voice of Missouri’s Catholic Bishops and Catholic citizens in the halls of the State Capitol. 2017 will focus on celebrating the past accomplishments of the MCC and working toward future achievements together with Bishops, legislators and the citizens of Missouri. We invite you to get to know the MCC by joining MOCAN, the Missouri Catholic Advocacy Network.

Have questions about the celebration?

Find answers here!



Keynote Speaker: Papal Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre

Christophe Louis Yves Georges Pierre was born Jan. 30, 1946, in Rennes in France’s Brittany region, where his family has had roots for many generations. He first attended school at Antsirabe in Madagascar, pursued his secondary education at the College of Saint-Malo in France and also spent one year in Morocco at Lycee Francais of Marrakesh.

He entered Saint-Yves seminary in Rennes in 1963, but he interrupted his studies for two years of military service in 1965 and 1966. He was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Rennes at the Cathedral of Saint-Malo April 5, 1970.

Then-Father Pierre earned his master’s degree in theology at the Institut Catholique de Paris and his doctorate in canon law in Rome. He was parochial vicar of the parish of Saint-Pierre-Saint-Paul de Colombes in the Diocese of Nanterre, France, from 1970 to 1973.

He then earned a diploma at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy in Rome, which provides training to priests for eventual service in the Vatican’s diplomatic corps. In 1977, he entered diplomatic service, with his first post in Wellington, New Zealand. He then served in Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Cuba, Brazil and at the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations in Geneva.

In July 1995, St. John Paul II named him an archbishop and appointed him as apostolic nuncio to Haiti. He served there until 1999, and then was named nuncio to Uganda, where he stayed until 2007, when he was named nuncio to Mexico. In 2016, Pope Francis named him nuncio to the United States. (Biography courtesy of the Catholic News Service)

In his address, Archbishop Pierre will discuss how the mission of evangelization can be carried out more effectively.

“The Church needs to foster a greater sense of discipleship and mission, forming missionary disciples who have the task of giving prophetic witness through ongoing pastoral activity, calling others to deeper conversion, and to joyfully proclaim the Gospel. The Church cannot disengage from the rapidly secularizing and changing culture; rather, strengthened by the Spirit, she must be a missionary Church that goes forth, engaged in a permanent state of mission, building a world with more justice, reconciliation, and solidarity – a world which values and affirms the dignity of every person, and furthers a genuine culture of encounter in the promotion of life, love, and peace.”

Hear the address in full on Saturday, October 7 at the Missouri Catholic Conference 50th Anniversary celebration.


Workshop descriptions & presenter bios

Joan Rosenhauer, Catholic Relief Services Executive Vice President, U.S. Operations

Joan Rosenhauer joined CRS in April 2009 and is responsible for leadership of the agency’s mission of assisting Catholics in the U.S. to act on their faith by helping people in need around the world. She leads CRS’ domestic programs, including five regional offices across the U.S. Working with Catholic institutions and individuals across the country, as well as with others who share a commitment to global justice and peace, CRS provides resources and programs, such as CRS Rice Bowl during Lent, to engage people in the U.S. in global issues ranging from poverty to violence and war, hunger, human trafficking, migration and environmental challenges.

As a member of the CRS executive team, Ms. Rosenhauer has visited CRS programming in East and Central Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America. Programs in these regions include agriculture and food security, health, microfinance, peacebuilding, and others.

Prior to joining CRS, Ms. Rosenhauer spent 16 years working for the Office of Justice and Peace at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. She has a B.A. in Social Work from the University of Iowa and a Master’s degree in Public Policy Management from the University of Maryland. She has been awarded honorary doctorates from Dominican College and St. Ambrose University as well as the Harry A. Fagan Award from the Roundtable Association of Diocesan Social Action Directors. Ms. Rosenhauer serves on the Boards of Directors of Jesuit Refugee Services USA and the Catholic Climate Covenant.


Msgr. Michael John Witt, Archdiocese of St. Louis

Rev. Michael John Witt was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Saint Louis in 1990.  Before that, he served the Church for 22 years as a Christian Brother teaching in Oklahoma, Missouri, and Tennessee.  He holds a Ph.D. from Saint Louis University in Modern European History and a Masters in Divinity from Kenrick-Glennon Seminary.  He has served the Archdiocese as associate pastor, pastor, and Director of Continuing Formation of Priests, Interim President-Rector of the seminary and is currently Professor of Church History at the Seminary, pastor of All Saints Parish in University City and Rector of the Oratory of Ss. Gregory and Augustine. In addition to journal articles, Father Witt has published two books on American Catholic topics and is writing a four-volume history of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis, the audio versions available on Covenant Network.



Sue Thayer, former Planned Parenthood worker turned pro-life advocate

No one in the pro-life world has been inside Planned Parenthood longer than Sue Thayer. Having been a Center Manager for nearly 18 years, Sue believed she was helping women. But that all changed when she was informed she would soon be trained to do webcam abortions at her small rural Iowa center. Stunned, her concerns fell on deaf ears. Sue began to see the abortion giant in a new light and ultimately shared her insider’s knowledge. Sue’s vast experience coupled with her changed heart and bold faith has led to a whistleblower lawsuit, currently in litigation.

After converting to become a pro-life advocate, Sue led Storm Lake’s first ever 40 Days For Life campaign at the very clinic she supervised for so many years. Shortly after completing the prayer vigil, that Planned Parenthood location closed its doors forever. And later, Sue opened her own pregnancy resource center to help pregnant women and their children, and to foster pro-life values.

Sue shares her miraculous conversion with honesty, transparency, and humor. Having been a foster and adoptive parent for 29 years, Sue has an amazing love for children. As founder and Director of Cornerstone For Life Pregnancy Resource Center, Sue has truly come full circle.

Stay tuned for more information about the 50th-Anniversary celebration!

Print and promote the event with these materials:



Bulletin insert