Inaugural Parousia USA Speaking Tour

Above: The full team on tour across the western part of the USA

Welcome to another couple of months in the world of Parousia. We were recently on tour in the United States of America for our first ever speaking tour of their country. We partnered with Deacon Harold and his team to book all the venues and to organise the logistics of the whole tour. They did an amazing job! The tour was very well received by all who attended and we are planning a return to the USA in 2024.

Above: On tour in the USA!

The team included Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers as the MC, Anna Nuzzo as our singer and musician, Kevin Bailey, who shared his testimony ‘From Success to Significance’, Dr Robert Haddad, who gave a talk on the Eucharist, and myself, sharing my testimony on ‘How Islam Led me Back to Christ’.

Above: Scott Hahn speaking at the Catholic Answers Conference & insert with Kevin Bailey

Our tour began in Orange County, at St Hedwig’s Catholic Church. This was a two-night event, with Deacon Harold kick-starting the night, followed by Anna singing beautifully, and then having Kevin Bailey give the first full talk. Robert Haddad gave the second talk. The following night we had Deacon Harold MC again and more music from Anna, then I shared my testimony before we had more music and then a Q and A panel with all five of us. It was a great start to our first ever tour.

Above: Charbel, Robert Haddad, Dr Scott Hahn & Deacon Harold

From Orange County, we went and had a great meeting with Fr Robert Spitzer, before driving to San Diego for the rest of the week. We had another two-day event at St Charles Borromeo church, in San Diego. This event was live streamed on their YouTube channel. We also got to celebrate Kevin Bailey’s birthday and see a Baseball match during the day. We witnessed the Padres beat the Rockies.

Above: We had some great meetings at the Catholic Answers office

While in San Diego, we had a Parousia table at the Catholic Answers conference. So many great speakers were there, including Dr Scott Hahn. It was great to catch up with him. Over 800 people registered for this 3 day conference and it was great seeing Dr Robert Haddad up on the Q&A Panel.

Above: Kevin Bailey, Immaculee Illibagiza, Deacon Harold & Charbel Raish

From San Diego we travelled to St Louis, to catch up with Hector Molina and an exciting upcoming speaker, Monét Souza. We then drove to Kansas City and finally Birmingham, Alabama, where we had important meetings with EWTN. Overall, five cities in two weeks and over 1,500 people reached, praise God! We plan to be back next September to cover the East Coast. Thank you USA!

Above: Meeting members of the EWTN executive team in Alabama

Parousia Podcast

Another exciting round of guests for our Parousia Podcasts over the last eight weeks, including chats with Dr Ralph Martin, speaking about his book, ‘A Church in Crisis’. Stacy Trasancos shared her testimony and how Science points to God. Anne-Marie Irwin shared with us her S.A.L.T approach catechesis for young children and Cy Kellett, while in Perth, sat with me to discuss his book on Jesus ‘A Teacher of Strange Things’. Please share these powerful podcasts.

Local Events

Since coming back from the states, I’ve been busy sharing my testimony with so many different groups. It started with the Chaldeans, then the Catholic University Chaplaincy and St Joseph’s Church in Moorebank with the Somascans, who are doing so many great things in their parish. Please learn more about this exciting religious order that is growing.

Above: Charbel Raish in Perth with Evangelisation Australia and then on the right the Somascans at St Joseph’s Church, Moorebank.

We also were able to link up with Evangelisation Australia in Perth for their ‘Behold Conference’ that featured presenters Cy Kellett, Tim Staples and Dr Stacy Trasancos from Catholic Answers. It was well attended and it is great to get back to Perth after six years. We hope to do more in Western Australia.

What’s Next?

Next Month, we welcome Matt Fradd and Jason Evert as we join forces with the Sydney Centre for Evangelisation. There will be four days of events from 6th – 9th December, for all ages. Please visit our website to learn more about this exciting time for the Church in Sydney, Australia.

Please also pray for all of the other work we are doing at Parousia and know of our prayers for you.

God bless.

Charbel Raish – Director

Catholics in Exile: Biblical Wisdom for the Journey Home

– Scott Hahn and Brandon McGinley (Paperback)

From the day the Gospel dawned in the World, Christians have occupied a remarkable place—citizens of heaven, but heirs to the world; loving the world, yet persecuted by the world. A second-century author remarked that Christians are to the world what the soul is to the body. It was people of faith who transformed Greco-Roman civilization and empowered it to thrive.

This is the way of believers in every age, “always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested” (2 Cor 4:10).

In this book, Catholics in Exile: Biblical Wisdom for the Journey Home, authors Scott Hahn and Brandon McGinley demonstrate that the same power that converted the world in the first century is still converting the world today. Providence is not like a sporting event, or the stock market, or the battlefield, where progress can be measured. But it is more reliable than any measurement we have.

The message of this book is at once bracingly realistic and hopeful. Christians today are living in exile. But Christians have always lived as strangers in a strange land—and have nevertheless prevailed. It is a timeless message, but calibrated here precisely for our time.

Rejoice! An Advent Pilgrimage into the Heart of Scripture: Year B, Journal

– Fr Mark Toups (Paperback)

God wants to draw you closer to himself this Advent-and what better way to do that than through His Word?

In this new installment of the Rejoice! series, you will be immersed in the readings that anchor us during the Advent season–the Sunday Mass readings.

This year’s Advent pilgrimage will bear fruit in your life as Jesus comes to live more fully in your heart, and you experience greater joy and peace throughout the Advent season and beyond.

Each day, in a few short pages, Fr. Toups provides you with aids to help guide your prayer:

    • A word – Focus on a single word each day to help you enter more deeply into that week’s readings.
    • A reflection – Explore each week’s readings and enter more deeply into them.
    • A prompt – Space is provided each day to journal. Record how the Lord is speaking to you this Advent.

It is Right and Just; Why the Future of Civilization Depends on the Catholic Faith

– Dr Scott Hahn (CD)

Contrary to what political commentators and activists say, religion is not only relevant to justice and law, but is necessary for civilization to thrive.

Dr. Scott Hahn will uncover the public nature of true religion and its role in society. He will unpack the necessary need for religious liberty, justice, peace and the call to reject the lie perpetuated by secular liberal culture: that religion is a private matter.

The Lost Art of Wonder

Dale Ahlquist (CD)

G.K. Chesterton says, “The world will never starve for want of wonders, but only for want of wonder.”

What have we lost by losing our sense of wonder, by having it dulled and decimated in today’s world? In a word, we’ve lost God.

Using the timeless insights of Chesterton, Dale Ahlquist will help reawaken our wonder and rediscover the thrill of a Creed that declares: “I believe in God…”

In Persona Christi: The Catholic Priesthood

– St Anthony Communications (Parousia On Demand)

The Catholic priesthood comes to us from Jesus Christ. He is the High Priest, the mediator between God and man. Building on the pattern of priesthood from Old Testament times, Jesus chose twelve men to act in His place as priests of the new and everlasting covenant.

This film explores the essential nature and theology of the sacred priesthood, the importance of a deep prayer life, the centrality of the Mass and Eucharistic Adoration, devotion to the Blessed Virgin, priestly fatherhood and celibacy, and the necessity of a missionary zeal.

Commentary and insights are provided by numerous priests, as they reflect on their own calling and consider what it means to act “In Persona Christi”. Featuring Bishop Mark Davies, Fr Hugh Allan, Fr Marcus Holden, Fr Andrew Pinsent, Fr John Saward, Fr Lawrence Lew, Fr Paschal Uche, Fr Behruz Raf’at, Fr Toby Lees, and Fr Matt Roche-Saunders.

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