Back in the Real World after the CNMC

CNMC, Catholic New Media Conference, Catholic

More than two weeks after the Catholic New Media Conference and Lisa and I still haven’t posted anything. The more time goes by, the more pressure I feel to write something…yet not just something, but something good. Sarah Reinhard emailed me last week and asked if I was settling back into “real life” post-CNMC and I wrote her back.

“If by “re-entering the Real World better than I am” means that I still haven’t put up an original post since the CNMC because I’ve spent all my “should-be-writing-time” looking at other peoples photos and Facebook conversations, and blogs summarizing their experiences at the conference, etc.  Then yes, I’m doing great.”
Once again, the CNMC proved to be an amazing experience filled with fellowship, laughter, prayer, and testimony. Everyone you met told their story about why they were attending. Some were regular attendees, others were new.  All felt called to attend. We were excited, perhaps a little tentative, and our hearts were burning to be an apostle in the new media digital continent. By working in new media, it’s easy to feel sometimes like we’re speaking into a vacuum. The CNMC is our opportunity to make connections with real people that link us together and remind us together we can represent our faith to others searching for truth and authority. If you missed it, you can still pick up all of the awesome audio via the SQPN CNMC  “Virtual Ticket”.

Catholic New Media Conference
Shelly, Lisa & Dorian at CNMC

Personally, the CNMC provided me with a welcome break from major stress I’ve been feeling. Leaving my long-time career caused something of a personal identity crisis for me, and I’ve been struggling to find a new “normal,” both with the job change, new house, new schools, and especially a new parish.  Even under the best of circumstances, change is difficult and challenge brings about personal growth. But being among friends at the CNMC, I found myself reminded over and over again that God is always with us and He desires to heal us. We must trust in His wisdom, especially during the weak moments of our lives, because God will never abandon us. The honest sharing and reassurance from so many “virtual” friends who have become so much more than that empowered me to return home refreshed and renewed in spirit, ready to face the challenges that continue to be present.

Isaiah 40
Isaiah 40:31
But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. – Isaiah 40:31 (NLT)


Shelly Henley Kelly