“I AM WHAT I DO”
Establishing My Identity in Christ
12th Biennial Rome Conference
14th International Conference
September 19th -22nd, 2024
Istituto Maria Santissima Bambina
Via Paolo VI 21
On behalf of MaterCare International (MCI), we look forward to welcoming you to Italy for our 14th international conference. The conference venue, Istituto Maria Santissima Bambina (Institute of St Mary the Child), overlooks St Peter’s Basilica and Square (see photo), and offers a safe, hospitable, retreat-like environment with good conference facilities, and the best roof-top view in Rome!
The opening words of our conference theme, “I am what I do,” is a quote from MaterCare’s co-founder, the late Professor Robert Walley, emphasizing our personal responsibility for ensuring we carry out our role as authentic Catholic doctors to the very best of our ability, especially where maternal health care is concerned. To achieve this, we must establish our identity in Christ and ensure our professional expertise encompasses the “four C’s” of conviction, professional competence, community orientation, and individual compassion. These elements have been seamlessly integrated into the programme and each of the eight sessions reminds us of the beauty of our faith.
The conference is preceded by an afternoon board meeting and spiritual retreat on “Discovering my identity in Christ,” then a “Welcome” session and reception on the evening of September 19th. Eight sessions spread over September 20-21st cover the following: an overview of true personal and professional identity; an expert panel discussion of practical issues facing trainees in OB/GYN and paediatrics; a focus on what MaterCare International does; a Catholic perspective on current obstetric, paediatric and gynaecological subjects; a professional development session featuring an interactive Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) case discussion; faith and bioethics; a day in the life of a Catholic OB/GYN; and, formulation of a conference statement.
Our speakers are experts in their field and will be extensively involved in all aspects of the programme, including panel discussions. Free communications are invited and delegates encouraged to participate in two interactive sessions plus “Q & A” after every presentation. We hope that you can join us in the Eternal City for a professionally and spiritually enriching, multidisciplinary meeting.
Accommodation is available in the Institute of St Mary the Child from 18-23rd September, 2023, on request from MaterCare International.
A/Prof Elvis Šeman
Prof Bogdan Chazan
PS. An audience with Pope Francis has been requested.
Too often, Catholic medical professionals feel isolated from their communities. Faced daily with increasing ethical and moral challenges to their faith, medical personnel are especially vulnerable to the process of gradualism which threatens to erode the level of care and compassion they are able to provide, as well as their own personal faith and commitment. In particular, we suggest the organization of White Masses, a tradition begun by the Catholic Medical Association in the 1930s on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes the World Day of the Sick, to occur annually in every diocese for doctors, nurses, midwives, medical students and residents.
We respectfully request and encourage all Bishops to offer an annual White Mass to show support for all health care professionals, and to offer pastoral care through an annual “date with the doctors”.
To get started, download "How to organize a White Mass" here.