Sr. Kathryn Press

Sr. Kathryn Press is a dedicated Apostle of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, from Georgia, USA. Since professing her final vows in 2018, she has been a beacon of faith and education across various communities. With a Master of Divinity and a rich background in religious studies, Sr. Kathryn’s journey in teaching spans the full spectrum of education, from pre-K to high school, testament to her versatility and passion for imparting knowledge.


Her commitment to the Catholic faith and education took her beyond the borders of the United States. After establishing a convent in Ireland, she spent three fruitful years teaching in New York City. However, her heart called her back to Ireland in September 2020, where she currently engages in evangelisation and works within the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore.


As a member of an evangelisation team, Sr. Kathryn’s work is grounded in spreading the message of Christ and fostering a deeper understanding of the Catholic faith. Additionally, her role as an ACCORD marriage instructor has given her unique insights into the sacrament of marriage, emphasizing the spiritual and relational aspects crucial to Catholic teachings.


In her talk, “Leave room for the Holy Spirit: Marriage in Today’s World,” Sr. Kathryn will delve into the dynamics of modern marriage through the lens of Catholic teachings, informed by her experiences with ACCORD. Her insights promise to enlighten and guide young adults in understanding the interplay between faith, love, and commitment in today’s ever-evolving world, highlighting the vital role of the Holy Spirit in nurturing and sustaining Catholic marriages.

Fr. Vincent Twomey, S.V.D., Ph.D.

Fr. D. Vincent Twomey is a distinguished figure in the realm of Catholic theology, holding the title of Professor Emeritus of Moral Theology at the Pontifical University of St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, Ireland. His academic journey is marked by a deep connection with one of the contemporary greats of Catholic thought – he was a doctoral student under Joseph Ratzinger, who later became Pope Benedict XVI.


An accomplished author, Fr. Twomey has contributed significantly to theological discourse with several acclaimed books. His works include insightful explorations like “The End of Irish Catholicism?”, “Pope Benedict XVI: The Conscience of Our Age (A Theological Portrait),” and “Moral Theology after Humanae Vitae.” His latest scholarly contribution, “The Dynamics of Liturgy—Joseph Ratzinger’s Theology of Liturgy: An Interpretation” (Ignatius Press, 2022), continues his exploration of liturgical and theological themes.


Fr. Twomey’s contributions to theology and the Church were recognized at the highest levels when, in 2011, Pope Benedict XVI honoured him with the Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice medal for outstanding services rendered to the Church and the Holy Father.


In his talk, “Lord, I love you”, a doorway to the thought of Joseph Ratzinger, Fr. Twomey will offer attendees a unique gateway into the theological insights of his mentor. His deep understanding of Ratzinger’s work, combined with his own scholarly achievements, positions him perfectly to provide a profound exploration of this topic, illuminating the thought processes of one of the most influential Catholic theologians of our time.


Fr. Bill O’Shaughnessy

Fr. Bill O’Shaughnessy is from Kildare and was ordained in 2017. He serves as the Assistant Vocations Director in the Dublin Diocese. His work in vocations is particularly significant in 2024, being the year of Diocesan Vocations to the Priesthood. He is currently the moderator of Springfield, Jobstown and Brookfield Parishes.


Fr. O’Shaughnessy earned a Baccalaureate of Arts in History and Theology from the Pontifical University Maynooth in 2009, followed by a Masters in Dogmatic Theology in 2011. He completed a Higher Diploma in Philosophy at NUI Maynooth before joining the seminary in 2012. He later went on to join the Irish College Community in Rome, earning a Baccalaureate in Sacred Theology and a Licentiate in Dogmatic Theology from the Gregorian University. His passion and enthusiasm are evident through his YouTube channel “Patricius Ministries”.


His talk at St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, is titled  “The Priesthood – Divine Gift or Human Power Grab?” will explore the essence and societal perceptions of priesthood. In this vital discussion, Fr. O’Shaughnessy’s insights, drawn from his role in guiding vocations and his own journey to the priesthood, promise to offer a fresh and reflective perspective on this profound subject.

Dr. Gaven Kerr

Gaven Kerr

Dr. Gaven Kerr, a Lecturer in Philosophy at Maynooth University, is a prominent figure in the realms of philosophy and theology. His academic journey is distinguished by a BA (Hons) in Scholastic Philosophy from Queen’s University Belfast, followed by an MPhil and a PhD in Philosophy from the same institution. His doctoral research, focused on “The Metaphysics of St Thomas Aquinas and Neo-Theomistic Realism.”


Dr. Kerr’s research interests encompass a broad spectrum, including St. Thomas Aquinas, medieval philosophy, metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, logic, history of philosophy, and philosophy of religion. This extensive expertise underpins his teaching career, which spans philosophy at QUB, St Malachy’s Seminary Belfast, and Maynooth University, and theology at Mary Immaculate College Limerick.


In his talk, “What is Metaphysics and why should a Catholic care?”, Dr. Kerr will bring his deep understanding of metaphysics to explore its relevance and significance in the context of Catholic thought and life. His session promises to provide profound insights into how metaphysical concepts intersect with and enrich Catholic doctrine and personal faith.

Dr. Julia Meszaros

Dr. Julia Meszaros, a Lecturer in Systematic Theology at St. Patrick’s Pontifical University in Maynooth. Her academic pursuits primarily revolve around theological anthropology and the interplay between theology and literature.


Dr. Meszaros is known for her unique contribution to bringing the works of forgotten female writers of the Catholic Literary Revival back into the spotlight. Her efforts have successfully reintroduced these significant yet overlooked authors and their novels, rich with theological themes, to contemporary audiences. Her passion extends beyond the academic realm as she frequently delivers talks and workshops, discussing the profound theological themes embedded in these literary works.


Her academic contributions also include a diverse range of papers on various theological topics. Adding to her versatile interests, Dr. Meszaros is an avid enthusiast of flora, currently engaging in developing a ‘theology of plants’, exploring the spiritual and theological dimensions of plant life.


In her talk workshop titled “Forgotten Female Authors of the Catholic Revival”, Dr. Meszaros will delve into the contributions of these notable women, shedding light on their literary works and the theological richness they offer to the Catholic tradition.

Fr. Brendan Kilcoyne

Fr Brendan Kilcoyne was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Tuam in 1994 and is currently Parish Priest of Athenry, Co Galway. Fr Kilcoyne has also served as President of St. Jarlath’s College, Tuam and Tuam Diocesan Secretary. He is co-founder of Immaculata Productions, an Irish Catholic media production company. Fr Kilcoyne is a passionate public speaker and comments on numerous aspects of faith and Catholic culture on his weekly podcast, The Brendan Option. His vision for protecting and nurturing the faith in Ireland makes his podcast very popular with young Catholics as they navigate an increasingly secular society.


In his talk titled “St Patrick, an Uneasy Hero”, taking place during the St. Patrick’s Bank Holiday weekend at St. Patrick’s Seminary, Maynooth, Fr. Kilcoyne will explore the complex figure of St. Patrick. He will delve into how St. Patrick, despite being a celebrated patron saint, can sometimes be perceived as an ‘uneasy hero’ for the Irish. This talk promises to offer a unique perspective on St. Patrick, blending historical insights with contemporary relevance, especially apt for the conference setting and timing.

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