The Catholic Advocate Vol. 67, No. 3 March 14, 2018 Vol. 67 No.3 March 14, 2018 The community newspaper of the Archdiocese of Newark Thousands of women share, grow in faith at conference Men’s Conference, story and photos on pages 8 & 9 M ore than 1,500 faithful women from around the Archdiocese of Newark gathered at Seton Hall University March 3 for the annual Women’s Day of Re- flection. The event included several guest speakers, Spanish-language presen- tations and concluded with Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R, celebrat- ing Mass. Sister Brittany Harrison, F.M.A., a Salesian Sister from Mary Help of Christians Academy in North Hale- don, gave the first keynote address. She discussed how difficult it can be to understand suffering, especially in light of recent events. “So many young people think that God is a vaccine against suffer- ing, or that he is an insurance poli- cy,” Sister Brittany explained. “Kids are reeling after the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and are asking themselves ‘why is this happening?’ Young people are growing up in a culture of death and fear.” Sister Brittany stressed that “God is present in suffering” and all hardships have the potential to be a blessing. “Suffering could make us bitter or better,” she noted. “We choose our attitude when we face suffering; through our perspective, we can change our point of view.” As Christians, Sister Brittany explained we must embrace “both the cross and the tomb” and “death By Melissa McNally Editor RETREATS & SHRINES Pages 10-12 SCHOOLS HOSTING PRAYER SERVICES Page 15 SPRING OPEN HOUSE Pages 17-21 AROUND THE ARCHDIOCESE Page 23 APPOINTMENTS Page 24 Advocate photos-Melissa McNally See more photos on page 7 Sister Brittany Harrison, F.M.A. Hallie Lord and resurrection.” “We know that Jesus’ story does not end on the cross. We know that his suffering leads to Easter Sunday. Suffering is temporary, but joy is ev- erlasting,” she said. Using her own life as an exam- ple, she explained how hardships can lead to greater depth and empa- thy when dealing with others. “Sometimes God does not pro- vide the healing that we ask for, but the healing we need,” Sister Brittany said. “My suffering has made me more open to God. I grew up as a su- per independent person who thought it was humiliating to rely on others for help. You have to break down your ego in order to let people in.” Through God, Sister Brittany argued, all pain can be turned into something worthwhile. “If you don’t have faith, suffering is useless,” she said. “God is the ultimate recy- cler—he does not waste a thing. We can find purpose and meaning in suffering.” Author and radio host Hallie Lord also discussed surrendering to God and abandoning fear in her keynote address. After converting to Catholicism 17 years ago, she said she was “consumed by fear.” “I used to be completely reliant on my own power and then I placed all of my trust in God. It’s scary to hand over that control,” Lord ex- plained. “We must ask God what path we must take and learn to fear- lessly follow him.” Amother of eight children, she is the author of “On the Other Side of Fear: How I Found Peace” and hosts “Hallie Weekly” on SiriusXM.