St. Catherine's Marriage Ministry springs from our desire to answer the challenge put forth by Pope St. John Paul II in Familiaris Consortio:
"At a moment of history in which the family is the object of numerous forces that seek to destroy it or in some way to deform it, and aware that the well-being of society and her own good are intimately tied to the good of the family, the Church perceives in a more urgent and compelling way her mission of proclaiming to all people the plan of God for marriage and the family, ensuring their full vitality and human and Christian development, and thus contributing to the renewal of society and of the People of God."
Our mission is to empower couples to understand and live the beauty of marriage according to God's design; to acquire the skills needed to establish and sustain the intimate relationships found in marriage and family life; to discern and pray together about how the Lord is calling them to give witness to the Gospel, in and through their homes and family life; and to be joy-filled disciples of Christ, bearing witness to their faith and vocation, in both our parish community and in the world. (See the USCCB's Called to the Joy of Love: National Pastoral Framework for Marriage and Family Life Ministry.)
Below you can find an overview of marriage ministry opportunities at our parish. For more information about any of these programs, email our Director of Marriage Ministries, Lydia Borja, at email@example.com.
Retreats & Workshop
We have several opportunities throughout the year for marriage skills-building, including a day-long workshop called Sacramental Adventures in Marriage, as well as retreats and spiritual talks for couples seeking to grow together spiritually. Check our weekly bulletin and our parish website for upcoming events.
Couples of Faith
Our quarterly dinner and speaker series for married and engaged couples, we gather on Saturday evenings for presentations on topics related to marriage, family, and the Catholic faith. The evening includes dinner and free child care. Registration is necessary. Our next Couples of Faith evening is Saturday, February 12, 2022.
Natural Family Planning Ministry
St. Catherine's Natural Family Planning Ministry offers support, encouragement, and community as couples live out the Church's beautiful teaching on married love. Find resources, get to know Church teaching, and learn more about methods by visiting our NFP website, or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Faith and Love Conference
Faith and Love is our annual major speaker conference, exploring important topics related to the Church's teaching on marriage and family. Each year, St. Catherine's hosts several nationally-known speakers in a day-long gathering of Catholics from around the archdiocese. We also offer an exhibit hall of local Catholic organizations. Registration is necessary. Our next Conference is February 26, 2022.
Pathways to the Sacraments
Pathways to the Sacraments is for couples who were not married in the Church. Many people are not aware that Catholics are required to be married in a Catholic Church by a Catholic minister (unless they have received a dispensation) for their marriage to be recognized by the Church as a valid sacramental marriage. If you were married civilly or in a non-Catholic church, or if you are in need of an annulment, please consider joining us for this informative seminar to find out more about the process referred to as a “convalidation,” to have your marriage recognized by the Church.
Rebuild: Divorce Care
Rebuild: Laying the Foundation of Life After Divorce is a day-long workshop hosted by Rose Sweet, Catholic author, life coach, and creator of the Surviving Divorce DVD series. Attendees will experience a warm and supportive environment, informative presentations, and an opportunity for Adoration and Confession. Registration is necessary. Our next Rebuild workshop is January 8, 2022. Register here.
Retrouvaille is a practical program that helps restore and heal struggling marriages by improving communication and helping couples reconnect. Learn more at www.helpourmarriage.org. Retrouvaille support groups meet periodically throughout the year at St. Cahterine's. Contact Lydia Borja for more information.
Marriage Building Weekends
The first weekend of each month, our parish celebrates couples with anniversaries during that month by offering them a special blessing at the end of Mass. Look for the Marriage Building banners in the narthex, and be sure to attend Mass with your spouse on the first weekend of your anniversary month.