Our TASTE Speakers





Our Scheduled Speakers Sept.14, 2017 - May 10, 2018




Fr. Chris Alar MIC is a priest for the Marians of the Immaculate Conception in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. He is the Director of the Association of the Marian Helpers... known as Fr. Joseph! Father is on fire to evangelize the world, not for the sake of new members but to save souls. On fire with his love for Jesus he will inspire you and place within your heart a yearning to learn more. This young priest speaks with conviction and zeal. His talks are contagious...you will leave a changed person ready to evangelize. Thus year Fr. Chris will be coming to speak to us about The Catholic Church…The Fullness of Truth!



Mary Jo Anderson is an accomplished Catholic journalist and public speaker. Seen on EWTN, and heard all over the world, Mary Jo also writes for several magazines including Crisis. She is a board member of Women for Faith and Family and co-authored "Male and Female He Made Them: Questions and Answers about Marriage and Same-Sex Unions," published in 2005 by Catholic Answers. Internationally known, she was asked to speak to the Czech Republic to address parliamentarians on the Impact of Radical Feminism on Emerging Democracies. She currently lives in Florida with her husband and has 3 grown children and 8 grandchildren. Her talk is entitled Why And How Grace Magnifies Your Acts of Love: You Can Change The Future!



Raymond Arroyo is the creator of The World Over Live on EWTN that’s seen in more than 200 million homes on six continents each week. He is an award winning author and journalist. His books on Mother Angelica are just amazing as you feel like you are swept into her life and that you know her. His children’s series is already on its second book! Raymond will be coming to speak on Mother Angelica: The Remarkable Story of A Nun, Her Nerve, and A Network of Miracles.



Fr. Thomas Berg a former Legionary of Christ, is now a diocesan priest of the Archdiocese of New York, and is the vice-rector of St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers, New York. His book Hurting in the Church: A Way Forward for Wounded Catholics, is a guide to healing for those who have been hurt in the church, and an examination of conscience for the rest of us. He will be speaking on his book. There will be time for him to autograph his book and then he will hear Confessions.



Susan Brinkmann a third order Carmelite, and OCDS Staff Journalist. is author of several books and articles. Sue spends most of her time working for the Women of Grace Team with Johnette Benkovic for EWTN. She has appeared many times on TV and is also involved with her ministry helping others learn about God through retreats given in her hometown in PA. Sue will be speaking on Mary, Queen of Church Militants based on Father Emile Neubert SM STD book where he showed how the four attributes of our feminine genius - maternity, sensitivity, generosity, receptivity - make women the perfect militants for this age. She will be coming down from Pennsylvania.



Susan Conroy will be coming to TASTE this September to share her story of what it was like to live and pray with a saint. Susan grew up in a family of 10 children and while visiting home during college she read a book about Mother Teresa and during college left the comforts of home to go to India and learn from a saint. Her experience transformed her life! She will be speaking on her book Praying with Mother Teresa and the Saints.



Fr. Michael DeAscanis a former civil engineer was ordained to the priesthood in 2004. Prior to being pastor of St. Philip Neri Parish in Linthicum, Father was the Vocations Director for the Archdiocese of Baltimore. Fr. Mike was one of our first speakers at TASTE. His topic this year is Bible 101: Making the Bible User-Friendly.




Fr. Matthew Fish a newly ordained priest having discerned his calling most of his life became a priest in 2015. He attended Franciscan University and upon graduation went on to teach at DeMatha High School in Hyattsville,. He also was the director of Youth Ministry and Adult Formation at St. Jude’s in Rockville, MD. Father really discern his calling in the Seminary. He is currently the Parochial Vicar at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in College Park, MD. Fr. Matt will be coming to teach us about Purgatory.




Fr. Carter Griffin converted to Catholicism while attending Princeton University. After graduating in 1994, he served for four years as a surface line officer in the United States Navy prior to entering the seminary. He attended Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, MD, for two years of philosophy followed by the North American College in Rome for five years of theology. Father Griffin was ordained to the priesthood in 2004 and served as the priest-secretary to the archbishop of Washington before beginning doctoral studies in Rome in 2008. His doctoral dissertation, "Supernatural Fatherhood Through Priestly Celibacy: Fulfillment in Masculinity," was published in 2010. He is the vocations director of the Archdiocese of Washington and the vice-rector of the Blessed John Paul II Seminary.




Bill Keimig is the Assistant Director of The New Catechetical Institute at the Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is the former Director of the Association for Catechumenal Ministry and managing editor for ACM Publications. He holds a Master's Degree in Theology and Christian Ministry from the Franciscan University of Steubenville and is finishing his dissertation from Catholic University. Seen occasionally on EWTN, Bill is on fire for his Faith. He and his wife Heather are the proud parents of six children. Bill's topic this year is The Good News Or Fake News:Debunking Catholic Myths.




Fr. Patrick Lewis wanted to be a priest from his youth. He grew up locally in St. Bernadette Parish in Silver Spring. He attended the University of Maryland, and served as an account manager for a start-up software company in Tyson's Corner. He was ordained to the priesthood in 2012. He is currently an associate pastor at Little Flower Parish in Bethesda. Father will be speaking about Saints as Members of the Church.




Carolyn Nolan is the Director of Religious Education for St. Peter the Apostle in Libertytown. She recently became a third order Dominican and has a zeal for teaching others. This year she will be doing our 6 part Lenten Series on Learning About the Lives of Many Saints.




Tom Peterson is an award-winning corporate advertising executive for 25 years, until his life was radically changed forever, after receiving a transforming Spiritual conversion while on a Catholic men’s retreat. Soon afterward, he founded VirtueMedia (pro-life) and CatholicsComeHome.org. These apostolates have transformed millions of peoples lives. He will discuss his new book Catholics Come Home and autograph them immediately following his talk.




Fr. Dave Pivonka TOR a Franciscan Friar, was ordained in 1996. He taught at the Franciscan University of Steubenville and was the Director of the Study Abroad Program in Gaming, Austria. Fr. Dave is an internationally known speaker and author. Currently he is the director of Franciscan Pathways, an evangelistic and preaching outreach of the TORs. Always evangelizing Fr. Dave has a project called http://thewildgooseisloose.com/series-segments/ This year Father is graciously coming back once again to speak about More of You Less of Me.




Fr. Larry Swink was ordained a priest in May 2006 for the Washington Diocese. The oldest of ten children Father Swink is a dynamic speaker. He gave the homily to over 10,000 Catholics during the Right To Life March in 2010. He is currently pastor of Sacred Heart in LaPlata, Maryland. Father's first parish was St. Mary of the Mills Parish in Laurel, Maryland. He has been involved with the TASTE Program from the beginning. His opening talk Called According To HIS Purpose…Knowing The Will of God will kick off our year together.







Dear Jesus,
Thank you for sending us such wonderful priests and lay men and women to bless and nurture us. Help us to be women of courage always seeking the truth and spreading it to all we meet. Keep us steadfast in our mission and focused on loving you. This we humbly ask in Your holy Name. Amen.