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**: $0
Online Ticket Options:
  • Online tickets include access to the livestream on Saturday, March 4, as well as additional access to the recordings (from noon ET on Sunday, March 5, to 11:59 pm ET on Wednesday, March 8).
  • 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 supporting sponsors, 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:
  • 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, February 17. All refund requests made on or after February 18 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.


  • Vocation of the Health Care Professional
    • Kristin M. Collier, MD, FACP
  • Dignity of the Human Person: Image of God, Freedom, and Conscience
    • Rev. Tadeusz Pacholczyk, PhD
  • When does Life Begin: The Science 
    • Maureen L. Condic, PhD
  • An Introduction to Fertility Awareness Based Methods
    • Kimberly A. Barrows, MD


  • Decision Making at the End of Life 
    • Rev. Tadeusz Pacholczyk, PhD
  • Redemptive Meaning of Human Suffering 
    • Natalie King, MD, MA
  • The Ethical Challenges in Accompanying Women with Holistic Medical Care
    • Natalie King, MD, MA and Kristin M. Collier, MD, FACP


7:30 AM
Check-In/Breakfast Begins
8:10 AM
Opening Remarks
8:20 - 9:20 AM
Dignity of the Human Person: Image of God, Freedom, and Conscience
9:25 - 10:25 AM
When Does Life Begin: The Science
10:25 - 10:40 AM
10:40 - 11:40 AM
An Introduction to Fertility Awareness Based Methods 
11:40 AM - 1:20 PM
Hippocratic Oath Luncheon
12:15 - 1:15 PM
Vocation of the Health Care Professional
1:20 -1:40 PM
1:40 - 2:40 PM
Decision Making at the End of Life 
2:45 - 3:45 PM
Redemptive Meaning of Human Suffering 
3:45 - 3:55 PM
3:55 - 4:55 PM
The Ethical Challenges in Accompanying Women With Holistic Medical Care
4:55 - 5:10 PM
Closing Remarks
5:30 - 6:30 PM
Vigil Mass
6:30 - 7:15 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.

Director of Education, The National Catholic Bioethics Center

Fr. Tad currently serves as the Director of Education at The National Catholic Bioethics Center in Philadelphia and directs the Center's National Catholic Certification Program in Health Care Ethics. He is a priest of the diocese of Fall River, Massachusetts. He writes and speaks widely on bioethics and medical ethics. Since 2001, he has given several hundred presentations and invited lectures, and participated in debates and roundtables on contemporary bioethics throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. He has taught bioethics classes for seminarians at St. John's Seminary in Boston, Pope St. John XXIII Seminary in Weston, Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia, the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. and Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Connecticut. As an undergraduate Fr. Tad earned degrees in philosophy, biochemistry, molecular cell biology, and chemistry, and did laboratory research on hormonal regulation of the immune response. He later earned a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Yale University, where he focused on cloning genes for neurotransmitter transporters which are expressed in the brain. He worked for several years as a molecular biologist at Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School. Father Tad studied for 5 years in Rome at both the Gregorian University and the Lateran University, where he did advanced work in dogmatic theology and in bioethics, examining the question of delayed ensoulment of the human embryo. He has testified before members of the Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Virginia and Oregon State Legislatures during deliberations over stem cell research and cloning. He writes a monthly newspaper column on bioethics that is nationally syndicated to more than 40 diocesan newspapers in the U.S., and which has also been carried by newspapers in England, Poland and Australia. He has done commentaries for numerous media outlets, including NBC Nightly News, CNN International, ABC World News Tonight, National Public Radio, the Wall Street Journal, the Dallas Morning News, and the New York Times.

Associate Professor, Neurobiology and Anatomy, University of Utah, School of Medicine

Maureen Condic Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah, School of Medicine, with an adjunct appointment in the Department of Pediatrics. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago, her doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley, and postdoctoral training at the University of Minnesota. Since her appointment at the University of Utah in 1997, Dr. Condic's primary research focus has been the development and regeneration of the nervous system. In 1999, she was awarded the Basil O'Connor Young Investigator Award for her studies of peripheral nervous system development. In 2002, she was named a McKnight Neuroscience of Brain Disorders Investigator, in recognition of her research in the field of spinal cord repair and regeneration. In addition to her scientific research, Dr. Condic teaches both graduate and medical students. Her teaching focuses primarily on embryonic development, and she is Director for Human embryology in the University of Utah, School of Medicine’s curriculum. Dr. Condic has a strong commitment to public education and science literacy.

Associate Professor of Internal Medicine, Director of the University of Michigan Medical School Program on Health, Spirituality and Religion

Kristin M. Collier, MD, FACP is an associate professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor Michigan where she serves as the director of the University of Michigan Medical School Program on Health, Spirituality and Religion. She is also an associate program director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at the University of Michigan where she oversees the primary care track. She received her medical degree from the University of Michigan Medical School and completed her internship, residency, and chief residency at The University of Michigan Hospitals. Her academic interests are in the overlap of spirituality, religion and medicine and her peer reviewed work has been published in high-impact journals such as JAMA Internal Medicine, the Annals of Internal Medicine, and the British Medical Journal. She also has had writings published in Notre Dame’s Church Life Journal, Theopolis, America Magazine, and Public Discourse. She is also a wife and the proud mother of four sons.

Vice President of Operations, St. John Paul II Foundation

Susie Saenz is Vice President of Operations at the St. John Paul II Foundation where she oversees and supports the Conference team as they plan and execute Converging Roads and Together in Holiness conferences, along with the Together in Holiness Formation series Business Development team as they expand this initiative to parishes and schools across the country.  Susie earned her BS in Kinesiology from Texas A&M University and, prior to joining the St. John Paul II Foundation in 2017, worked at Baylor College of Medicine in the philanthropy and alumni relations office. She and her husband, Victor, are parishioners at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Houston, TX.

Bishop of the Diocese of Grand Rapids

Most Rev. David J. Walkowiak, JCD, is the 12th Bishop of the Diocese of Grand Rapids. He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Cleveland in 1979. He was ordained and installed as Bishop of Grand Rapids on June 18, 2013, following his appointment by Pope Francis. He obtained his bachelors degree from the University of Notre Dame, a Master of Divinity degree from Saint Mary Seminary, Cleveland, Ohio, and his licentiate and doctorate degrees in canon law from The Catholic University of America.

Womens’ Health Physician, Trinity Health Medical Group

Kim is a Women's Health Physician for Trinity Health Medical Group in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  She is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Catholic Medical Association.  Dr. Barrows received her B.A. Degree from Miami University and her MD from Medical College of Ohio. She is a Board Certified Family Physician and a Natural Family Planning Medical Consultant, trained by the Pope Paul VI Institute in Omaha, Nebraska.




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 7 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 7 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 7 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
Accreditation. Activity ID 40167 has been approved for 7 contact hours.

Click here for full CME/CNE details

The National Association of Catholic Chaplains has approved this program for 7.25 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 7 hours.  Please select the General Admission ticket option and request a certificate of completion on your registration form. For questions, please email Conference Coordinator Cameron Kelly at [email protected]


Aquinas College

1607 Robinson Rd SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49506

For More Information:
Cameron Kelly, Conference Coordinator
[email protected]





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