Provided by IGNITE Catholic Men’s Conference

Wanted: Catholic men, ages 16 and up, seeking to fire up their faith! The Syracuse Roman Catholic Diocese will host IGNITE 2016 Catholic Men’s Conference, on Saturday, March 19, 2016, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the SRC Arena and Event Center, Syracuse. This daylong event will feature three nationally known speakers, Mass, lunch and free parking.

A highly sought-after motivational speaker, Rudy Ruettiger entertains international audiences with a unique, passionate, and heartfelt style of communicating. After years of fierce determination to overcome obstacles and criticisms, Ruettiger achieved his first dream — to attend Notre Dame and play football for the Fighting Irish. As fans cheered RU-DY, RU-DY, he sacked the quarterback in the last 27 seconds of the only play in the only game of his college football career. He reaches audiences with the same enthusiasm, portraying the human spirit that comes from his personal experiences of adversity and triumph.

Father Joe Freedy is the youngest of five children. He grew up in Bethel Park, Pa., where he attended Saint Thomas More grade school followed by Bethel Park High School. Earning a scholarship to the University at Buffalo to play football, Father Freedy was the starting quarterback for three years before graduating in 2002. After college he entered Saint Paul Seminary in Pittsburgh and then was assigned to the North American College in Rome where he studied at the Gregorian University followed by the John Paul II Institute. He was ordained a priest in June of 2008 and has been serving as the Vocations Director for the Diocese of Pittsburgh for the past 6 years.

Randy Raus is the President of Life Teen and a 22-year veteran of youth ministry. He spent 12 years leading a parish youth group, and has worked with youth leaders around the globe. “I converted to Catholicism in 1983 and feel called to give back. The first ministry I looked at was teens and it has been a calling ever since,” he said. Raus has spoken to thousands of audiences with an inspirational discussion about his conversion to Catholicism.

The cost for this event is $55 online or $75 at the door. To register, go to For more information, call Ed Kirk at (315) 560-9170 or Father Joseph O’Connor at (315) 470-1468.

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