IT IS NOT TOO LATE! Please fill in your response of The Catholic Family Life Conference Survey for 2017

IF you attended the Family Life Conference this year, we want to hear from you. Every opinion matters and is considered in the light of the consensus of all participants who respond. Whether it is just a quick "bravo" or a prayerful "lament" it keeps the board responsive to the needs of those who attend. Thank you!


Women of Dignity Conference: NOVEMBER 3-4, 2017
Sister Helena Burns • Holy Trinity Catholic Church

(nestled between Spruce Grove and Stony Plain and home of our Annual Men's Conference)        

Sister Helena Burns pic SISTER HELENA BURNS, FSP • Author and Presenter

Sister Helena Burns is a member of the Daughters of St. Paul, an international congregation founded to communicate God's Word through the media. She has an M.A. in Media Literacy Education; a B.A. in theology and philosophy from St. John's University, NYC; studied screenwriting at UCLA and Act One, Hollywood; and holds a Certificate in Pastoral Youth Ministry. Sr. Helena is also studying at the Theology of the Body Institute, PA.

She is a movie reviewer for Life Teen & The Catholic Channel--Sirius XM. She wrote and directed Media Apostle: The Father James Alberione Story, a documentary on the life of Blessed James Alberione, and is a co-producer on  a pro-life film documenting the 40 years since Roe v. Wade. She is the author of He Speaks to You, a book for young women published by Pauline Books & Media and developed a Theology of the Body curriculum for teens, young adults and adults, which she presents in a 40-hour course.

Sr. Helena gives Media Literacy and Theology of the Body workshops to youth and adults all over the U.S. and Canada, and believes that media can be a primary tool for sharing God's love and salvation.

Sr. Helena Burns is a proud member of the elite Catholic Speakers Organization, CMG Booking.


“The media presentations helped our teens experience hope.” –Paul and Tracy La Scala, Confirmation Coordinators, St. John Neumann, Irvine, CA

“The format was great for adult formation...a very comfortable environment in which to learn.” – Tish Petricca, Adult Education Director, St. Matthew, Schaumburg, IL 

“Christianity has to be where the new generation is....” –teen student, Toronto, ON, CANADA

“Excellent! A dynamic, engaging presentation that wowed the teens and parents...
fun and thought-provoking.” –Mary Ann Snyder, DRE, St. Robert, Ada, MI

“I enjoyed your presentation very much. Usually I would fall asleep, but you have found a way 
to get to people.” –teen student, Toronto, ON, CANADA

“Fresh, relevant and informative.  Brings the teaching of JPII to life is an easy to understand way for teens and adults.” –Mike Zak, youth minister, St. Patrick's Church, St. Charles, IL

“Her style is very engaging and witty. The youth responded exceptionally well to her style, as did others, shall we say, not so young.” – Fr. John Riccardo, pastor of Our Lady of Good Counsel, Plymouth, MI 

“Her talks were of great substance...and helped our parish to have a better understanding of the Church's teaching vis-a-vis today's culture.” –Fr. John M. Bonavitacola, pastor of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Tempe, AZ

“Her wisdom and insight in regard to media use are excellent. She communicates easily with young and old. She takes the entertainment world seriously and engages it with faith so that her audience can be discerning about what is spiritually healthy.” –Fr. John Thieryoung, pastor of St. Catherine parish, Aledo, IL


If you've attended the conference this year, we want to hear from you.

Fill out the survey here.

Family Life Conference 2016 - "The Name of God is Mercy" 


Pope Francis has declared an Extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy which began Dec. 8th, 2015, the feast of the Immaculate Conception and the 50th Anniversary of the closing of the Second Vatican Council. It will close Nov. 20, 2016, the Feast of Christ the King. This year’s motto is “Merciful Like the Father.”

CFM is excited to celebrate this great Jubilee of Mercy with the conference theme “The Name of God is Mercy” - the title of a book written by Pope Francis.

Sometimes when we think of the word mercy, we imagine someone throwing themselves on their knees before a cruel judge, pleading to be spared some punishment. This is far from our understanding of God’s mercy. We don’t ask for God’s mercy because we’re afraid of incurring his wrath as punishment for our sins. Rather, when we call on God to have mercy, we are calling on God in the only way we know him - as one who responds with compassion to those in need. When we show mercy to others, we are responding as God responds, with compassion.

An excerpt The Church of Mercy by Pope Francis on the Parable of the Merciful Father: “Maybe someone among us here is thinking, My sin is so great, I am as far from God as the younger son in the parable; my unbelief is like that of Thomas. I don’t have the courage to go back, to believe that God can welcome me and that he is waiting for me, of all people. But God is indeed waiting for you; he asks of you only the courage to go to him... Don’t be afraid, go to him, he is waiting for you, he will take care of everything. We hear many offers from the world around us; but let us take up God’s offer instead: he is a caress of love. For God, we are not numbers, we are important; indeed we are the most important thing to him. Even if we are sinners, we are what is closest to his heart.”

In receiving God's mercy, we too, can
Be Merciful as our Father is Merciful!                                               



Sister Helena Burns pic

Sister Helena's Most Notable Workshops:


What does it mean to live in a media culture? What are the promises and challenges of today’s media content and technologies? What is the Church’s official position regarding media?
 Learn the basics of media literacy and how they can help discern and enhance all your media experiences.  

MEDIA IS A FAITH THING (for parenting or family/intergenerational catechesis) 

How can you be a "media smart" family? What is "parenting/grandparenting" the media?

Learn the basics of media literacy and how they can help you effectively communicate about media with your kids, teens, and as a family. What are some easy media strategies for families?


Do you use digital media? Are you Catholic? That makes you a digital Catholic! How can we use new media and social media in a way that is humanizing and not de-humanizing? How can we use new media and social media for the New Evangelization and to do Spiritual Works of Mercy? 


What is true love? Can it be found in the media? We’ll use Pope John Paul II’s revolutionary
 “Theology of the Body” and God’s 5 F’s of True Love as our guides. (Media clips are used. Appropriate for age 13+)