DENVER, Colo., December 19, 2016 — More than 12,500 registrants are gearing up for SEEK2017, January 3 – 7, 2017, in San Antonio, Texas. Attendees hail from more than 500 college campuses, and several dozen international attendees are coming from ten other countries, including Austria, Ireland, Mexico and South Korea. The largest campus contingent is from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with nearly 400 registrants.
The biennial event is hosted by the Fellowship of Catholic
University Students (FOCUS) and features the theme “What Moves You.” Seminars,
worship opportunities and peer discussions will challenge each heart to discover
God’s will through truth, goodness and beauty.
“I am extremely excited for the speakers and community at SEEK2017 because the last event I went to truly helped me encounter the Lord and strive to live my life in service to Him,” said Madalena DeAndrea, a junior at the University of Colorado-Boulder who attended SEEK2015. DeAndrea is also the Student Body President of Internal Affairs for CU's Student Government. “Staying strong in your faith can be a challenge with the growing secularism of today's culture. SEEK2017 is a chance to learn from top Catholic speakers and be encouraged by thousands of college students who are on fire with the Lord's love and are striving to become saints!”
The new “Awaken” program of events, which includes an art and poetry exhibit along with a musician side stage, will feature students sharing their talents and showing beauty as a bridge to the Divine, a window to encounter the person of Christ.
More than 200 priests will concelebrate daily Mass. Adoration and confession will provide opportunities for prayer and reflection. At the last event, SEEK2015, priests heard more than 5,500 confessions.
Comedian Michael Jr. and folk rock band The Oh Hellos are the entertainment headliners. More than 35 nationally recognized speakers will talk about relationships, discipleship and hot topics facing college students today. Recently-announced speaker Marilyn E. Coors will share her perspective on bioethical issues. Coors is an associate professor for the Center for Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus.
The SEEK2017 keynote speakers are Sr. Miriam James Heidland, Sr. Bethany Madonna, Fr. Mike Schmitz, Mark Hart, John Leyendecker, Curtis Martin, John O’Leary and Dr. Edward Sri. Impact Session presenters include Fr. Philip Bochanski, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, Fr. Dave Dwyer, Fr. Michael Gaitley, Fr. Joshua Johnson, Fr. Robert Sirico, Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, Fr. Scott Traynor, Ryan Anderson, Audrey Assad, John Carmichael, Jeff Cavins, Kevin Cotter, Lisa Cotter, Leah Darrow, Paul Darrow, Crystalina Evert, Jason Evert, Matt Fradd, Jackie Francois, Jennifer Fulwiler, Dr. Tim Gray, Dr. Scott Hahn, Marcel LeJeune, Patrick Lencioni, Dr. Jonathan Reyes and Sarah Swafford. A full list of speakers and bios can be found at seek2017.com/speakers.
More than 40,000 people have attended FOCUS events since the inaugural National Conference held in 1999, where 25 students came together to pray, deepen their Catholic faith and learn how to share Christ with others. Most SEEK attendees are college students, but many others attend — including collegiate chaplains served by FOCUS, who are integral to FOCUS’ work on campuses. Other attendees include alumni and benefactors.
Sponsors include Benedictine College (Partner Sponsor), Augustine Institute (Partner Sponsor), Alliance Defending Freedom (Official Sponsor) and the Liturgical Institute (Official Sponsor).
The Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS) was founded in 1998 and invites college students into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ and His Church, inspiring and equipping them for a lifetime of Christ-centered evangelization, discipleship and friendships in which they lead others to do the same. During the 2016 – 2017 academic year, more than 550 missionaries are serving full-time on 125 college campuses, located across 38 U.S. states and in two pilot locations in Austria. More than 20,000 FOCUS alumni have been prepared to evangelize parishes throughout the U.S. Within this number, more than 600 have made decisions to pursue Catholic religious vocations. By 2022, FOCUS expects to launch 75,000 alumni into America’s 17,000+ Catholic parishes. FOCUS missionaries are typically recent college graduates who devote two or more years of their post-collegiate lives to reach out to peers on campus. To learn more, visit us at www.focus.org.