How a Typical Catholic Parish
Became an International Model
The late Msgr. Thomas McGread is often called the “Father of Stewardship.” At this one-of-a-kind conference, we share the remarkable story of how stewardship transformed Msgr. McGread’s parish — St. Francis of Assisi in Wichita — and how it has impacted other parishes across the country.
This conference, for both clergy and lay leaders, will provide a setting for you to discover how to teach your parishioners to become better Christian stewards. Come see where it all began.
Beginning in the 1960s, Msgr. McGread built one of the most vibrant parishes in the country by teaching parishioners how to use their personal gifts, or what he called “time, talent, and treasure.”
Msgr. McGread was influential in the drafting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) pastoral letter, Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response, which adopted his terminology and theological vision. Msgr. McGread’s approach to stewardship was that it is a spiritual, biblically-based principle that begins with conversion of heart and translates into a lifestyle of service. His message was so compelling that he was invited to speak at parishes and dioceses across the country, and he also was the keynote speaker at several ICSC conferences. In addition, Msgr. McGread was a part of our team at Catholic Stewardship Consultants from 2002 up until his passing in April 2013.
While Msgr. McGread is no longer with us in body, he remains with us in spirit, and his stewardship message lives on. Conference attendees will have the opportunity to view one of his presentations via large-screen video.
When: March 1-2, 2023 — Scheduled during the middle of the week so all participants can arrive Tuesday evening and depart Thursday afternoon.
Where: Spiritual Life Center of the Diocese of Wichita — This is a modern retreat and conference center where you will see stewardship in action during your visit.
Cost: Registration fee for Clergy and Lay Leaders is $350 — This includes all sessions, and breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus a DVD of Msgr. McGread explaining the key components of building stewardship — ideal for viewing with your Pastoral Council or other leadership groups.
Very Rev. John Lanzrath
Pastor, St. John the Evangelist, El Dorado, Kan.
A native of Wichita, Kan., Fr. John Lanzrath earned a degree in mathematics and worked as a civilian in military intelligence at Boeing Military Airplane Company before resigning to enter the seminary. He studied at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Md., and later at Gregorian University in Rome. He has served the Diocese of Wichita in many capacities since his ordination in 1988 – associate pastor, Vice-Chancellor, Moderator of the Curia, Director of the Spiritual Life Center, Director of Stewardship, Vicar for Priests, and as Chancellor of the Diocese. Fr. John worked closely with Msgr. McGread in spreading the message of stewardship throughout the diocese and across the nation. In addition, Fr. John was instrumental in the development of their diocesan manual, The Pillars of Parish Stewardship.
Very Rev. Godfrey Mullen, OSB
Rector, Cathedral of St. Peter, Belleville, Ill.
Fr. Godfrey Mullen, OSB, is the rector of the Cathedral of St. Peter in Belleville, Ill. Professed as a monk of St. Meinrad Archabbey in 1989, he was ordained a priest in 1994. After returning from studies to the abbey in 2001 and earning his Ph.D. in Liturgical Studies from the Catholic University of America in 2003, he taught seminarians, lay students, and deacon candidates for 12 years. He also held several administrative posts in the seminary at St. Meinrad. In 2012, he became pastor of St. Mary’s Parish in Huntingburg, Ind. In 2013, Bishop Charles Thompson assigned him to be rector of St. Benedict Cathedral, and three years ago, he began working to develop stewardship as a way of life at the cathedral parish.
Rev. Eric Clark
Pastor, St. Peter, Lincoln, Neb.
Fr. Clark grew up in rural McCool Junction, Neb., on a farm. After graduating from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a degree in agricultural economics, he spent four years as a FOCUS missionary at North Dakota State University in Fargo. He was ordained a priest in 2014 and began his priestly ministry as the parochial vicar at St. Michael in Lincoln and as a theology teacher at Pius X High School. He later went on to serve as parochial vicar at two other parishes in Lincoln before becoming the pastor at St. Peter in 2020. Previously, Fr. Clark also served in several roles with the Diocese of Lincoln, including as Director of Diocesan Appeals, Chaplain of the Frassati Society for young adults, as an advocate on the Diocesan Marriage Tribunal, as Director of Lectors and Acolytes, and as the Diocesan Master of Ceremonies.
Mr. Eric McArdle
President, Catholic Stewardship Consultants
Eric McArdle is the President and co-founder of CSC. For over 20 years, Eric has worked with hundreds of parishes across the country on every aspect of stewardship development. At CSC, Eric and his staff work closely with parish and diocesan clients, utilizing a proven spiritual-based process that focuses on communication, education, and evangelization. Parishes that implement the CSC process have been successful in deepening the spirituality and practice of stewardship. CSC clients have seen parish life transformed, as individual parishioners and families grow in their relationship with God through a life of generous giving of their time, talent, and treasure. Eric, his wife Lisa, and their five daughters are members of St. Mary on the Hill in Augusta, Ga. At St. Mary’s, Eric has been involved in various parish ministries and also has served in many key parish leadership roles.
Rev. Brian O’Brien
Pastor, St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, Stillwater, Okla.
Ordained a priest of the Diocese of Tulsa in 2007, Fr. Brian O’Brien currently serves as Pastor of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Stillwater, and also serves as Associate Director of Vocations for the Diocese of Tulsa. At St. Francis Xavier, Fr. O’Brien oversaw the merger of two parishes and successfully implemented stewardship in the new parish. After graduating from Boston College in 1998, he began teaching at Bishop Kelley High School in Tulsa. He earned his master’s in education from the University of Notre Dame in 2000. After prayer and reflection, Fr. O’Brien entered St. Meinrad Seminary in Indiana in 2002 and earned his master’s in Catholic Social Thought and Life and a Master of Divinity in 2007. He then served as Associate Pastor of Christ the King Catholic Church in Tulsa and as Chaplain of Bishop Kelley High School. Fr. O’Brien also served as President of Bishop Kelley High School from 2009 to 2017.
Mrs. Katie Conner
Writer, Catholic Stewardship Consultants
Kathleen (“Katie”) Conner is a joyful wife, mother of nine, and attorney from Augusta, Ga. She received a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame in 1992, and a J.D. from The Catholic University of America in 1995. In her legal practice, Katie represents abused and neglected children in the Georgia foster care system and serves as Legal Counsel to I-Care, a local non-profit dedicated to assisting victims of human trafficking and their children. She is honored to have recently joined the staff at CSC as a writer. Katie and her husband, Steve, discovered stewardship many years ago and it has transformed their lives in unexpected and wonderful ways. She is delighted to share her personal testimony and eager to offer the gift of a stewardship way of life to those near and far.
Rev. Michael Troha
Pastor, Immaculate Conception, Willoughby, Ohio
Fr. Michael Troha has been a priest in the Diocese of Cleveland for 42 years. After attending a Msgr. McGread Stewardship Conference in Wichita in February 2005, he began to put into practice what he learned at that conference at Immaculate Conception in Willoughby, then at St. Ignatius in Cleveland, and now back at Immaculate Conception, where he returned for a second stint as pastor in 2019. Over the years, Fr. Troha has successfully developed stewardship as a way of life at both parishes. The spirituality of stewardship and its connection to discipleship is being spread throughout his parish, and both Immaculate Conception and St. Ignatius have experienced increases in spiritual growth, parishioner ownership, parishioner involvement, and financial giving.
March 2023 Conference Schedule
Wednesday, March 1
Breakfast — 8:15 a.m.
Opening Prayer and Welcome — 9 a.m.
Morning Presentations — 9:15 to 11:50 a.m.
Lunch — 12:00 to 1:00 p.m.
Afternoon Presentations — 1:30 to 4:15 p.m.
Evening Prayer — 5:45 p.m.
Dinner — 6 p.m.
Thursday, March 2
Mass — 7:30 a.m.
Breakfast — 8:15 a.m.
Morning Presentations — 9 a.m.
Closing Prayer and Lunch — 12 p.m.
Spiritual Life Center
This is a modern retreat center where you can relax with no distractions. During your stay at the SLC, you will experience stewardship at work when spending time in a chapel reserved for quiet reflection and personal prayer, when simply viewing the beautiful flower gardens planted and tended by volunteers, or when being graciously served by volunteers and staff. They offer private bedrooms, individually climate-controlled, with private bathroom, shower and vanity, and no TVs or in-room wifi access (wifi is available in the lobby and conference rooms). There are comfortable lounge areas adjacent to all bedroom corridors offering a welcoming place to relax and engage in quiet fellowship with other retreat participants. There are 60 rooms that can be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis. The cost is $65 per person per night for single occupancy, and $55 per person per night for double occupancy.
Spiritual Life Center • 7100 E. 45th St. N. • Wichita, KS 67226
316-744-0167 • email@example.com • www.slcwichita.org
The following hotels are not connected with the conference, but are within a few miles of the Spiritual Life Center: The Courtyard by Marriott (316-636-4600); TownePlace Suites by Marriott (316-631-3773); Hampton Inn (316-636-5594)
Please arrange your transportation to and from the conference.If you are flying into Wichita, car rental is suggested.
Contact CSC Conference Coordinator Shari Navarre at 706-877-5547 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
“This conference has helped me to form my commitment to build stewardship at St. Vincent’s. The commitment of others is contagious and helps me believe that this way of life is something everyone needs to know about.”
Msgr. Robert Tucker, Pastor, St. Vincent de Paul, Seward, Neb.
“The conference is always a refresher for me. It reinvigorates me and challenges me to take back what I learn. Everything was wonderful – thank you.”
Msgr. Leo Enlow, Pastor, St. Peter, Quincy, Ill.