Need advice on Catholic Social Club/Network


#1

Hello everyone, I am asking for any advice or ideas pertaining to starting a social club or network in our local cluster of churches. I have discussed with others that it would be nice to socialize with other Catholics for multiple reasons. I’m thinking of a very relaxed and informal type of gatherings. Events would be a great way for Catholics to get together and enjoy dinners, shows, sporting events, as well as volunteer at local food pantries, homeless shelters etc.

I’ll be honest, the whole idea developed from being discouraged in how hard it is to find a Catholic woman to date, and wishing there was a group already formulated, and up and running. After getting by what simply I would like, I opened my mind and thought what might all of our local younger (20’s and 30’s) Catholics might enjoy. Although I would welcome people to use the club/network as a way to meet potential mates, I really get excited in just thinking how great it would be just to spend time with other Catholics.

So here is what I am asking of you guys…

  1. Do you think its a good idea
  2. Do you think I should keep the idea very broad as a social network, and not as a dating club, or do you think that since there is such a need for a way for Catholics to meet each other that it should take precedent.
  3. Any and all critiques…

#2
  1. If your area of parishes doesn’t already have something for your age-range - it would be very good to start something - but keep the activities faith-centered (see #2).

  2. Focus the purpose of the group on faith-centered activities. Be sure that the activities include continual catachesis intertwined with the activites, and keep it age-appropriate to keep it fun. It can be a lot of fun living your faith! Determine a spiritual patron saint or spirituality to guide the group. (Pope JP2 is a good one for this age range). This has been done in other metropolitian parishes - so maybe you can find a ‘sister’ parish to help guide your formation.

  3. I agree that something like this is very needed if there are large #'s of 20 & 30 somethings in your area.


#3

Thank you for the reply I appreciate any and all suggestions.

No, unfortunately there is not anything in our local churches. A lot of great ideas I had not thought of, including choosing a patron saint.

Im hoping to hear from someone on here that might be in such a group/network. Would this post do better in a different section of the forums, this one seemed to fit it the closest.

Again, thank you…and keep em coming !!!


#4

Disciple78 this is a great idea and I’m sure is God’s prompting as there are always young Catholics looking to connect. I am married with children now but I was very involved in a young adults prayer group in London, England where I grew up that was a ministry of a local Catholic Lay Community.

My advice would be first find a priest, sister or lay person who you consider mature, social and holy to be a spiritual adviser to the group. Whatever events you have be sure to always start them with a prayer. Make sure that you personally have a spiritual director and you are making an effort to actively grow in your faith.

I would also make sure that you start praying and fasting fervently for this group and for all future members. Have masses said, pray in front of the Blessed Sacrament and if after a lot of effort you find you have just a handful of people do not be discouraged as this is often how God works. By starting small you can get to know each other, become strong friends and pray together frequently. Over time God will add to your number if you are faithful.

I also agree that formation should be a component. You could either have two events: one where there is a talk aimed at young adults faith formation for example and another a pure social night
OR in the case of the group I was a member of the night would always start with mass at the community house, followed by formation/prayer and THEN socializing.

Without prayer and formation you could find your group loses it’s Catholic focus and also would have no clear direction.

I would not focus at all on dating. If people meet naturally within the group then all well and good but your first focus should be holiness and friendship. Ask the group members how they would like the see the group develop. Do you know ANYONE right now who you could invite? If you can just get two other people you can start praying together and meeting with the groups spiritual director and get the ball rolling.

The group I was a member of started with a small group of 3 or 5 (I can’t remember). They prayed and prayed and eventually that group grew to over 150 weekly members. From the group came vocations to marriage, to the priesthood, sisters, brothers and even a new Lay Community that is still going strong. I experienced a conversion as an atheist attending this group with friends and converted at 19. It was an amazing time and was very important in my formation as a new Catholic.

May God bless you as you reach out to your brothers and sisters.


#5

Wow, great advice thank you so very much. I'm happy to hear from someone who has been in a similar group, again thank you. Yes I do believe prayer will be and should be part of every meeting. I will discuss this with one of our local priests. I do know of one person that I have discussed this with and she is delighted, and would join in a heartbeat. I know of another that would probably attend. Here lies a small problem, our local churches age demographics would show that the minority of attendees are folks in their 20's and 30's. I am thinking of having it announced at the end of mass, and posted in the bulletin to get the word out. I'm optimistic in thinking that this could bring back some of our Catholics in giving them a way to connect with the church.

I have decided the group/network would not be gathered merely for dating purposes because there is a much broader demographic of people that benefit from a social club/group/network.

The possibility for success doesn't seem so distant thank you for your support

My prayers are with you all


#6

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