Like a lot of people to whom Family Groups mean so much, my husband and I are ex-patriots (of the UK and South Africa). Almost 10 years ago, Ken and I responded to an appeal at Mass for new Family Group members given by Carolyn. We were very soon to become parents and I was searching for a way to bring our children up in the Catholic faith in a way that would involve my non-Catholic husband in a non-threatening way.
In June 2006 a woman we call Jenny came to a weekend at Holy Cross for leaders and coordinators of Family Groups. She came with others from her country parish and during the weekend she shared a remarkable story with those of us who were there. We have recently met Jenny again on one of our parish visits and she shared another chapter of that story with us.
I was sick and you took care of me. “I am an eight year old boy dying of AIDS. You took me in as one of your own. You helped me to celebrate my life and impending death with the Family Group.”
How can we get back some good Old Fashioned Family Time? The following quote from a local Sydney newspaper got me thinking about this question …
“Walking through the waiting room of our busy psychology clinic this morning, I heard three families swapping stories about their Earth Hour experiences. One described the fun they had turning off the TV, PlayStation and stereo and playing an old-fashioned game of charades by candlelight. Another described the challenge of playing cards by candlelight with six children. One mother mused on how nice it was to simply sit and talk as a family.”
Fr Brian Lucas writes …
“The respective roles of laity and clergy need to be respected but all parish life is not necessarily dependent upon clerical leadership or approbation. The laity have a natural right to form associations.
On Sunday 18th May, 2003, Brad Hunt was busily cleaning up at the end of a lovely family BBQ which he had cooked for his father in law’s birthday. As some of the family prepared to leave, Brad sneaked into the garage to grab his new prized possession, a skateboard which his wife, Wendy had given him just a week earlier for his 37th birthday.
(An article from Alternatives, a newsletter of Catholic Adult Education Centre, Sydney. April, 2002)
In this article, Fr Peter McGrath cp, founder of the Passionist Family Group Movement, explores the value of family groups and shares what many are experiencing – belonging to a true Christian community.
by Reporter Philip Grier
In a recent interview with Fr Peter McGrath CP, the worldwide head of the “Family Group Movement”, Fr McGrath excitedly informed this reporter that he is being inundated with phone calls, faxes, letters and emails from all round the world relating stories of miracles happening in the lives of many of the “Family Group” members.