Pope Francis reminded us that Christian families “are the domestic church where Jesus grows in the love of a married couple, in the lives of their children.”
SYNODS on the Family — Next month, Catholic bishops from across the globe will gather at the Vatican for the first of two synods on the family and evangelization. Learn more about these synods and the topics they will explore at USCCB site.
Building the Domestic Church – The Family Fully Alive
Building the Domestic Church (Adobe PDF:)
Prayer (Adobe PDF)
Monthly Themes & Meditations
Participating in this initiative can be as simple as providing this booklet to your council and interested parish families. For councils that wish to do more to help strengthen their council families in faith and in turn strengthen their parishes, they can undertake these other items.
Start your program by asking your chaplains or another attending clergy member to bless the Holy Family icons that families have brought to the event. Then offer families the chance to share their monthly project and also what spending time together on the project has meant to them.
Family Movie Nights (once a month)
Invite all your council and parish families to gather as a family of families and share fun and fellowship while watching a free family movie. Have a special area for the kids, set up chairs in the back for parents/guardians, and provide free refreshments. Council leaders will find suggested movies for each month as well as simple steps in setting up a movie night.
Your council will need to obtain a special license to be able to show these movies in public. To cover this, your council can obtain a yearly paid subscription from the Motion Picture Licensing Corporation (MPLC). Information on this service can be found at mplc.org
Here are some tips on hosting the movie night:
Send out flyers (via email and by hand) to your council families. Also, consider distributing to parish families as well. Include the date, time, location, movie title, information on what charity contributions are being collected for, as well as an invitation for children to bring sleeping bags, blankets and pillows. You should also note that free refreshments will be available.
Open the doors for people to come in and settle a half hour before the movie begins.
Have free popcorn, lemonade, water, coffee or other refreshments available for attendees.
Set up a container to accept voluntary donations for either an ongoing charitable cause (possibly one associated with your parish) or a different charity each month.
Consider having an intermission halfway through the movie to allow for bathroom breaks and time to stretch.
After the movie, have a short discussion on the film (how it portrayed families, what were the good things that the characters did together, and what lessons they learned).
Family-Oriented Volunteer Projects (once a month)
Invite council families and other interested families to volunteer at a council service program each month. Council leaders will find suggested volunteer activities in this booklet to serve as a guide, but they may substitute programs or activities that the council already has planned for each month.