Sunday, March 30, 2014

Being Blessed by Speakers and Bloggers at the IBT Conference!

Last night I got back from the 12th annual Ignited By Truth Catholic Conference (IBT) that I attended with my 13 year old daughter and 8 month old daughter.  My 13 year old daughter was a big help during the talks as she strolled her baby sister around the venue so I could sit and listen to the wonderful speakers.   There were about 2,000 people registered for the conference and I especially always look forward to the Mass on Saturday evening with our Bishop that concludes the Conference.

As mentioned in my 7 (Really) Quick Takes Friday, Jennifer Fulwiler from Conversion Diary was one of the speakers at the Conference.  I was familiar with her conversion story as a faithful follower of her blog, but during her talks, I learned so much more about her journey and our Catholic faith.

I heard her speak Friday evening where she gave her first talk titled, “Atheist to Catholic:  My Story of Conversion” and just before she went on stage, I approached her and introduced myself and my daughters.  This picture is so dark because we were standing on the side of the stage and the lights were low.  My iPhone did the best it could with the lighting.  Jennifer is super nice and personable and really tall :)  All of Jennifer's talks were excellent and she did an awesome job!  I am in awe of how she found the time to prepare all her talks with her busy family life and still remain sane! :) 

Jennifer also spoke on Saturday and my 13 year old daughter listened to Jennifer speak on “Effectively Using Internet Technology to Spread the Gospel”.  My daughter thought it was very interesting and learned a lot.  I want to get a copy of this talk from a friend to listen to it myself, as I'm sure I can learn a lot from hearing it!

I enjoyed Jennifer's Saturday afternoon talk, “When Your Loved One Is an Atheist”, where she went into more detail about her conversion story and gave us tips to effectively evangelize our faith to family and friends.   I had to go to her table in the vendor area to get a better picture in better lighting this time :)

I also enjoyed meeting Jennifer's sweet Aunt (Jennifer looks a lot like her Mom's sister) and Uncle.  Jennifer's Uncle was her official photographer and in the picture below we are looking at his camera.

In my hand I am holding an excerpt of Jennifer's new book, Something Other Than God,  that will be released at the end of April.  I pre-ordered my copy already and you can order your copy now through, Ignatius Press, or Barnes & Noble
At the Conference she handed out these excerpts that was the 1st Chapter of her book.  I picked up one for myself and one for a friend that Jennifer signed with a sweet, personal message in each. I don't know if I'm more excited about reading her book or reading the free gift Jennifer will give to those who pre-order.  :)  Jennifer mentioned that she wants to do book tours in a previous blog post and I think my area would be a fine place to visit and sign books...hint, hint ;) 

I spoke to Jennifer's Uncle briefly {he's a cool (camera) guy!} and asked him what he thought of his niece's book and conversion.  He said he was quite impressed and inspired by it all. 

Jennifer, if you ever read this post in your "spare" time, I promise I wasn't stalking you, although I have to admit, I felt like I was meeting an awesome "celebrity." :) OK, so maybe I wasn't stalking you, just kind of following you and snapping pictures with you :) LOL!

OK, so this was not the "Jennifer Fulwiler from Conversion Diary Catholic Conference."  There were other great speakers there that I enjoyed listening to as my older daughter and I tried to keep my 8 month old busy.  I loved hearing all the speakers including Scott Hahn and his wife Kimberly.  I met Kimberly Hahn after her “Catholic Education:  Homeward Bound” talk and she is so full of wisdom.

I enjoyed meeting and chatting with other bloggers too including:

PC 3D BookHeather (and her husband) from Upside Down Homeschooling  ( Heather has a great homeschooling blog with tons of great resources and her husband just released a book titled Project Conversion: One Man, 12 Faiths, One Year that chronicles his spiritual journey.)  Photo Credit on left: Project Conversion

Tara from Blessings in Brelinskyville (Tara is a very gifted, faith-filled writer and I am always blessed by her posts)

Angela from Mary Grace Holmes (Angela's faith is inspiring as she blogs about all her blessings, both on earth and in Heaven) 

It was a blessed weekend for sure and I can't wait to get Ignited By Truth at next year's Conference!


Tracy, it was SO nice to meet you, and thanks so much for the sweet post!

Hi Jennifer!

It was a pleasure meeting you, as well! I can't wait to read your book after hearing you speak about parts of it at the conference! Thank you for the incredible witness you are shining Christ's light on all those you meet!

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I'm Tracy. I love my faith, family and on most days, homeschooling my 5 blessings. When I'm not busy baking cakes for my family or making memories in real life or dreaming I had a housekeeper or professional chef, I enjoy documenting a slice of Smith life in blog land.

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