One hundred and forty women came from Minnesota, Missouri, Virginia, Colorado, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, and Illinois for a simple women's conference in central Illinois. The game plan was simple: bring in some dynamic speakers, add some fresh flowers and home baked cookies, and put them all in a church hall. Don't charge too much and invite women who love God and want to have a good time. It worked.
Maybe you followed along on social media. Instagram has a good collection of pictures and I shared a couple good videos on my Facebook page but here's a few more glimpses of the weekend.
Friday night was a Girls' Night Out. It was a blast. The location was beautiful, the food was delicious, and the wine was fantastic. Local friends loaned me their Marian statues so each table had a different image of our Lady - the woman whose Fiat has echoed down through the centuries. Jenna Guizar spoke about Blessed Is She - the official co-host and sponsor of the event - and Marie Miller gave a concert. Marie kicked off the second half of the night with karaoke and dancing. It was a blast.
Saturday we started a bit later so women could get in an extra hour of sleep. We had fresh fruit, coffee and creamer, coloring pages, hand-stamped "fiat" necklaces, and more fresh flowers. It was a beautiful, sunny morning and we were so excited to start the day.
Meg started our morning off with a wonderful talk on the difference between seeking God and seeking God's will. Jenna ended our day by challenging us to say "no" so we could say "yes." Her line "if the devil can't make us evil he'll make us busy" cut right to the quick.
Shanon at Organic Mama's Shop donated the pens. My friend Katie hand stamped each "fiat" and made the necklaces along with making the coloring sheets for us.
Our breakout speakers were Colleen, Annie, Sr. Clara, Laura, Nancy, and Marie. They spoke about missionary work, infertility, finding your "yes," suffering, hobbies, and state of life. They were all fabulous - at least that's what I heard. I was so busy working behind the scenes I only caught glimpses of the various talks. I wish I could tell you that the talks are all available but in keeping with the laid back and simplicity we did not have any equipment to do that. You and I can suffer that together.
At one point in the day Nell - our truly fabulous emcee - grabbed my phone so she could get a picture of me and the conference I helped create. I love looking at this picture of me, wearing baby Tee. I think I have a charism for founding conferences. ;)
To the women who believed in our vision and spent the weekend with us: Thank you.
To Molly and Abbey who helped me establish this conference: Thank you.
To the women who helped make this conference a reality: Thank you.
to the women (and men) who prayed for me and for the weekend and for all the women who attended as speakers or guests: Thank you.
Our God is good.
"Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum."
"Let it be done unto me according to thy word."