By Dc. Tom Cuskey


Faith is the cure for isolation. That was the underlying message behind this year’s IGNITE Men’s Conference signature theme of “Living in His Presence.” After two years of COVID restrictions that caused a cancellation in 2020 and a socially distanced affair in 2021, the in-person event made a significant return this past Saturday.

More than 400 in-person attendees at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Baldwinsville were joined by another 35 who took advantage of the livestream option. This is a transitional year for IGNITE as 2023 is planned to return to the SRC Center at Onondaga Community College.

The day started with Mass with Bishop Douglas J. Lucia as the principal concelebrant and moved rapidly into the slate of speakers, a trio of men from different walks of life who each conveyed words of motivation and devotion to the crowd: Deacon Bob Rice, Father Jim Walsh and retired NFL player Matt Birk who delivered the day’s keynote address.

The day also included a panel Q&A discussion among the speakers which preceded a Holy Hour of Adoration and Benediction.

The recording of the day’s events should be available in the next couple of weeks; details can be found at

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