about Converging Roads

Where Health Care Ethics and Medicine Converge
Converging Roads is a regional conference series offering continuing education for health care professionals that equips them to practice the highest ethical and medical standards of their profession. To learn more about Converging Roads, click here.
    • Feedback from past attendees of Converging Roads:
    • "I’m so glad I attended. It was so insightful and gave me more knowledge on how to study more about human dignity, disabled persons and the correct way to explain our duty to others (as health care providers to our patients)."
    • "It is edifying to be with so many people trying to live their faith in a field that constantly challenges the truth."
    • "Thus far in my (nascent) career, my Catholic and medical identities have unfortunately been largely separate. I’m confident that the knowledge I obtained at Converging Roads and my subsequent reflection will serve me well on my path towards becoming the Catholic physician I’m striving to be."




In-Person Ticket Options:
  • Physicians/Physician Assistants: $159
  • Nurses/Nurse Practitioners: $139
  • General Admission*: $85
  • Medical residents, clergy, or religious*: $75
  • Student Scholarship Rate**: $15
Online Ticket Options:
  • Online tickets include access to the livestream on Saturday, April 22, as well as additional access to the recordings (from noon ET on Sunday, April 23, to 11:59 pm ET on Wednesday, April 26).
  • Physicians/Physician Assistants: $129
  • Nurses/Nurse Practitioners: $109
  • General Admission*: $55
  • Medical residents, clergy, or religious*: $45
  • Student Scholarship Rate**: $0
  • *Not eligible for CME/CNE credits, however, Chaplain certificates of completion can be requested upon registration for continuing education purposes.
  • **Not eligible for CME/CNE credits.

Exhibitor Opportunities:
Includes 1 exhibitor booth and admission for 1 organizational representative
  • Ministry/Non-Profit (including CME/CNE credits): $180
  • Ministry/Non-Profit (not including CME/CNE credits)*: $105
  • Vendor/For-Profit (including CME/CNE credits): $230
  • Vendor/For-Profit (not including CME/CNE credits)*: $155
  • *Not eligible for CME/CNE credits, however, Chaplain certificates of completion can be requested upon registration for continuing education purposes.

  • If you and/or your organization is interested in joining our mission as a supporting sponsor, please click here for the Sponsorship Form. You can also submit the form online by clicking here.
  • For questions or more information, please contact the conference coordinator at [email protected].

Student Scholarships:
  • Seminarians, undergraduate, graduate, nursing, and medical students are eligible to register for Converging Roads at our scholarship admission rate. If you are a student currently enrolled in classes and would like to attend the conference, please complete our student scholarship form prior to registering for the conference (click here). If you feel called to contribute to our scholarship fund, you can do so at the time of registration.

Refund Information:
  • If you are no longer able to attend the conference, after purchasing your ticket, you may choose to transfer your registration fees to a student in need, or request a refund.
  • All refunds must be requested 2 weeks prior to the conference. The last day to request a refund is Friday, April 7. All refund requests made on or after April 8 will not be accepted, but the funds will automatically be transferred to a student in need. Please email [email protected] to transfer your registration or request a refund.


  • Christian Anthropology as a Foundation for Ethical Medicine 
  • Ashley K. Fernandes, MD, PhD and Roland Millare, STD
  • Catholic Social Doctrine and its Implications for Health Care 
  • Dominique J. Monlezun, MD, PhD, PhD, MPH
  • Infertility and Artificial Reproductive Technologies 
  • Alicia W. Thompson, DO, MPH, FACOG
  • Vocation of the Catholic Medical Professional
  • Paul Day, MD and Amber Day, MD
  • End of Life Decision Making and Palliative Care 
  • Natalie King, MD, MA 
  • A Catholic Response to the Mental Health Crisis 
  • Teresa Durbak Sipos, DMin, RN
  • The Ethical Challenges in Accompanying Women with Holistic Medical Care 
  • Michele Faehnle, BSN, RN, LSN; Natalie King, MD, MA; and Alicia W. Thompson, DO, MPH, FACOG


7:30 AM
Check-In Begins
8:00 AM
Opening Remarks
8:10 - 9:10 AM
Christian Anthropology as a Foundation for Ethical Medicine
9:15 - 10:15 AM
Catholic Social Doctrine and its Implications for Health Care
10:15 - 10:30 AM
10:30 - 11:30 AM
Infertility and Artificial Reproductive Technologies
11:30 AM - 1:20 PM
Hippocratic Oath Luncheon
12:05 - 12:50 PM
Vocation of the Catholic Medical Professional
1:20 -1:40 PM
1:40 - 2:40 PM
End of Life Decision Making and Palliative Care
2:45 - 3:45 PM
A Catholic Response to the Mental Health Crisis
3:45 - 3:55 PM
3:55 - 4:55 PM
The Ethical Challenges in Accompanying Women with Holistic Medical Care
5:15 - 6:15 PM
  • Mass
6:15 - 7:00 PM
Wine & Cheese Reception


Palliative Medicine Physician, Intermountain Healthcare

Dr. Natalie King is a palliative medicine physician who specializes in caring for patients with serious illness and nearing the end of life. She is originally from Indiana and attended the University of Notre Dame. While in medical school at Tulane University, she founded the Catholic Medical Association Student Section. She completed internal medicine residency at the University of Utah and palliative medicine fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. After fellowship she worked as a palliative medicine physician in Denver, Colorado, helping lead her hospital’s ethics committee and teach trainees. She completed a master’s degree in bioethics from The Ohio State University, partnering with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to improve education around palliative care for Catholic laity. She has organized a forum for the Catholic Medical Association on end-of-life issues. She is passionate about education and advocacy about palliative medicine and ethical issues relating to serious illness and the end-of-life and is set to have a book released by Ave Maria Press in fall of 2024. She lives with her husband and daughter in Salt Lake City, Utah, and works at Intermountain Healthcare.

Professor of Pediatrics, The Ohio State University

Ashley K. Fernandes, MD, PhD, is the Associate Director of the Center for Bioethics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, and a Professor of Pediatrics at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Dr. Fernandes received an MD from The Ohio State University, a PhD in Philosophy from Georgetown University, and an MA in Philosophy from Johns Hopkins University, with a focus on bioethics. He directs ethics education for pediatric residents at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. His scholarly interests include Catholic Christian bioethics, Medicine and the Holocaust studies, pediatric ethics, and philosophical anthropology as it relates to medical practice. He has presented his work at international forums, and is the author of scores of peer-reviewed publications and three book chapters. After a decade as a hospitalist, he is now an academic primary care pediatrician and has been an expert witness in court cases defending the rights of Christian healthcare professionals and prolife organizations. Dr. Fernandes is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Pediatricians, an elected member of the AAP’s national Executive Committee on Bioethics, a member of the AOA Medical Honor Society, and a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, receiving the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine award twice—in 2020 and in 2010. He has been awarded OSU’s highest honors for teaching, including the Award in Mentorship, Professor of the Year Award, and Master Teacher Award. He is an active member of the Catholic Medical Association and is part of their national speaker board, and a member of Ohio Right to Life’s Board of Trustees. Outside of medicine, his interests include hiking in the National Parks, history, travel, and tennis. He lives with his wife and two boys in Dublin, Ohio.

Vice President of Curriculum and Director of Clergy Initiatives, St. John Paul II Foundation

Dr. Roland Millare, a native Houstonian, serves as the Vice President of Curriculum and the Director of Clergy Initiatives for the St. John Paul II Foundation (Houston, TX). Dr. Millare served as a member of the Theology Department at St. John XXIII College Preparatory (Katy, TX) for over 15 years. He received a BA in Theology from Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. He has a MA in Theological Studies (with a concentration in Moral Theology) from the Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College (Alexandria, VA) and a Licentiate (STL) and Doctorate in Sacred Theology (STD) in Dogmatic Theology (with a specialization in Sacramental Theology) from the University of St. Mary of the Lake (Mundelein, IL). Dr. Millare also serves as an adjunct professor of theology for permanent deacon candidates, seminarians, undergraduate and graduate students at the University of St. Thomas, St. Mary’s Seminary, the Diocese of Fort Worth and the University of Dallas. He has published various theological articles for Logos, Antiphon, New Blackfriars, Nova et Vetera, and the Heythrop Journal. He has published the book, A Living Sacrifice: Liturgy and Eschatology in Joseph Ratzinger (Emmaus Academic, 2022). Dr. Millare has also contributed an article to a forthcoming lexicon on the theology of Joseph Ratzinger (Ignatius Press). Dr. Millare is a member of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars, Academy of Catholic Theology, and the Society for Catholic Liturgy. Dr. Millare enjoys the gift of life and love with his beautiful wife Veronica and their three children.

Professor of Bioethics, Italian Pontifical Athenauem Regina Apostolorum and Mexican Universidad Anahuac, Professor (Adjunct Asst.) of Cardiology, UT MD Anderson and UT-Houston, Chief Data Scientist, Global System Analytics & Structures

Dominique J. Monlezun, MD, PhD, PhD, MPH, is Professor of Bioethics at the Italian Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum and Mexican Universidad Anáhuac, Professor (Adjunct Asst.) of Cardiology at UT MD Anderson Cancer Center and UT-Houston McGovern Medical School, Chief Data Scientist at Global System Analytics & Structures, Research Scholar for the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics & Human Rights, and Principal Investigator and Senior Data Scientist for over 50 biomedical randomized and cohort trials. He is a member of the American College of Physicians and AΩA Honor Medical Society. Dr. Monlezun received his MD from Tulane University School of Medicine, his first AI-focused PhD in Global Health Management & Policy from Tulane University School of Public Health, and his second  PhD in Bioethics from Regina Apostolorum. Dr. Monlezun has co-authored nearly 400 peer-reviewed manuscripts, conference presentations, and book chapters in addition to the first four comprehensive books on AI-driven human rights and equity in global bioethics, multicultural metaphysics, healthcare system management, and global public health, while practicing and teaching medicine, public health, data science, and ethics for graduate students on 4 continents.

Bishop of the Diocese of Columbus

Most Reverend Earl K. Fernandes was ordained and installed as the 13th Bishop of the Diocese of Columbus on May 31, 2022. He was serving as pastor of St. Ignatius of Loyola Church in Cincinnati, Ohio from 2019 until his ordination and installation. From 2016-2019, he was a member of the Staff of the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, D.C. From 2008-2016, he was the Dean of the Athenaeum of Ohio/Mount Saint Mary’s Seminary of the West in Cincinnati and an associate professor of moral theology. He holds a doctorate in moral theology from the Alphonsian Academy in Rome. He is a member of the Board of Trustees at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. He is also on the board of Cristo Rey Columbus High School, The Catholic Foundation of Ohio Columbus, and the Mother Angeline McCrory Manor. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Pregnancy Center East in Cincinnati, where he has served as a member of the Advisory Board since 2008. He is a member of the National Catholic Bioethics Center. From 2012-2016, he was a member of the Executive Committee of the National Association of Catholic Theological Schools. Since 2012, he has been a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre. He has given presentations, talks, and retreats around the country and has published articles in three collections of essays published by the Institute for Priestly Formation in Omaha, which also published a book authored by him in 2014. Father Fernandes’ scholarly essays have also appeared in Seminary Journal, Homiletic and Pastoral Review, the Linacre Quarterly, Journal of the National Apostolate for Inclusion Ministry. His articles in the latter two addressed issues of persons with disabilities.

Family Medicine, Bon Secours Mercy Health

Paul Day, MD, is a Family Medicine physician in Cincinnati, OH. He is a graduate of the University of Louisville for his Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology and his Medical Degree. He completed Family Medicine Residency training at Franciscan Health in Indianapolis, IN where he served as Chief Resident. He was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha and is a member of the Gold Humanism Honor Society. Dr. Day serves as volunteer faculty at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in the role of precepting medical students for Family Medicine rotations. He is currently the local President for the Cincinnati St. Gianna Guild of the Catholic Medical Association. He is trained in NaPro and FEMM women’s health care. Dr. Day fulfills speaking engagements for his local and state-wide community regarding topics such as the intersection of faith with science, women’s health, and story-telling in medicine.


Amber Day, MD, is a pediatric physician in Cincinnati, Ohio. She grew up in Northeast Ohio and received her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Xavier University in Cincinnati. She received her medical degree from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. She completed her intern year at Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital in Cleveland and her residency at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis. She has a heart for service and has worked with underserved populations in Cincinnati and has served in mission trips to Jamaica, Trinidad, and Kenya. Dr. Day is an active member of her parish as well as the Catholic Medical Association both nationally and locally in Cincinnati, where she has worked to get the guild established and actively thrive. Between this and homeschooling her three young children, she is kept busy! She is happily married to her husband, Paul, whom she met as a medical student through the Catholic Medical Association. They often work together on speaking engagements including women's health and vaccines for their local community.

Chaplain at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare, Nurse Educator, teaching Nursing Spirituality

Teresa Durbak Sipos, DMin, RN, serves as the Chaplain at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare and has provided behavioral healthcare in multidisciplinary roles (nurse, counselor, researcher, educator) for decades, recently teaching nurses at Ohio University, Cleveland State University and Columbus State Community College. Teresa is the author of Integrating Spiritual Healthcare Interventions Into Nursing Praxis: An Educational Intervention, and currently teaches Nursing Spirituality with practical pastoral and moral theology concepts, including spiritual interventions, for the benefit of both patients and nurses. Teresa completed her BSN from the University of Tulsa, MSEd from the University of Dayton and was conferred her Doctor of Ministry degree from St. Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology on May 12th, 2022. Teresa was also awarded the St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta Service Award by the Central Ohio Catholic Medical Association on May 1st, 2022. Teresa chairs the Catholic Nurses Columbus Council of the National Association of Catholic Nurses (NACN-USA), teaches Nursing Spirituality at national nursing and chaplain conferences, the Ohio Nurses’ Association, and presented at the 2022 National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC) conference highlighting research related to nurse-chaplain ministry partnerships Together with husband Gene, both are Companions of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, reside in Central Ohio, and are blessed as the parents of four children and six grandchildren.

Obstetrician Gynecologist, Westar OB/GYN

Alicia W. Thompson, DO, MPH, FACOG, is a board-certified ObGyn who is in private practice in Westerville Ohio. She attained her bachelor of science degree in chemistry, a master's degree in public health, and a medical degree all in Florida. After medical school, she moved to Dayton Ohio on active duty with the Air Force. She completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at a joint program through Wright State University and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. After her residency, she stayed at Wright-Patt as an attending physician. After completing her active duty service commitment, she worked as an academic ObGyn at Wright State University. In 2014 she relocated with her family to Chillicothe, Ohio for her husband's job. She is happily married to Dr. Greg Thompson, a radiation oncologist. They have five children, ages 3 to 12. Her full-time job is homeschooling. She converted to Christianity in 2008, crediting her experiences as a physician as a primary factor for her conversion. In confronting the dignity of human life in the womb, she encountered God. And it was through that encounter with God that she experienced her truest call as a disciple of Jesus Christ. She entered the Catholic Church in 2009. It took a few years before she fully surrendered her vocation as a physician to God's purposes and aligned her practice with her faith. In doing so, she learned NaPro and FEMM methods to treat reproductive health issues without relying exclusively on contraceptive means. Today, a large portion of her practice is spent caring for women struggling with reproductive health issues and infertility.


Michele Faehnle, BSN, RN, LSN, is the school nurse advisor for the Diocese of Columbus Office of Catholic Schools and the School Nurse at St. Andrew Catholic School in Upper Arlington, Ohio. She is a member of the National Association of Catholic Nurses and the co-director of the Columbus Catholic Women's Conference.  She holds a BSN Degree from Franciscan University of Steubenville and attended the school nurse licensure program at Ohio University.  Michele has published several books on women's spirituality and spoken nationally on the dignity and vocation of women through the lens of our Catholic Faith. She lives with her husband, Matt and four children in Columbus, Ohio.



Accreditation Statement
This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA) and St John Paul II Foundation. Christian Medical & Dental Associations is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Physician Credit
The Christian Medical & Dental Associations designates this educational activity for a maximum of 6.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits(s)™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Physician Assistant
AAPA accepts certificates of participation for educational activities certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ by an organization accredited by the ACCME or a recognized state medical society. Physician assistants may receive up to 6.75 credits for completing this activity.

Nurse Practitioner
The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program (AANPCP) accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ from organizations accredited by the ACCME. Individuals are responsible for checking with the AANPCP for further guidelines. Nurse practitioners may receive up to 6.75 credits for completing this activity.

This nursing continuing professional development activity was approved by the Georgia Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation. Activity ID 40208 has been approved for 6.75 contact hours.

Click here for full CME/CNE details


The National Association of Catholic Chaplains has approved this program for 6.75 Continuing Education Hours. Please select the General Admission or Clergy/Religious (if applicable) ticket option and request a certificate of completion on your registration form.

Social Workers and Counselors
If you are seeking Social Worker or Counselor continuing education credits, we can provide you with a certificate which states that you completed 6.75 hours.  Please select the General Admission ticket option and request a certificate of completion on your registration form. For questions, please email Conference Coordinator Ellen Clements at [email protected]


Pontifical College Josephinum

7625 N High St.
Columbus, OH 43235

For More Information:
Conference Coordinator
[email protected]





    1177 W Loop South, Ste. 940
    Houston, TX 77027


    P.O. Box 5927
    Katy, TX 77491