I have been involved in various ministries in the Church (mostly with youth) but feel that God is leading me in a new direction now. I think I’ve outgrown the youth/young adult demographic.
The Catholic family is the building block of our church. This is an era where the family is under attack from all sides. I feel that ministering to the family should be the number one priority but is lacking in our parishes.
I’m not talking about the occasional church picnic or social. I’m talking about real life ministry where parents and children can lean on each other in a social and spiritual way.
One of the attractions of the early Christians was their fellowship. We’ve lost that as a church. We attend mass on Sunday and maybe talk to someone on the way out, then we go about our week. Would’t it be nice to have a network of families that can be that “domestic church” and not be afraid to show who we are.
Go to most Holy Day masses, bible studies, holy hours, committee meetings and you find the same people (mostly over 55). Try to attend one of these with children and you usually get grief from the “regulars.”
My wife was glared at by such people when she attempted to attend morning mass before taking the oldest to school. God forbid you take a 2 y/o to Mass and he happens to make some noise.
Our friends who hav a 2 y/o and an infant were “spoken to” after mass by the pastor (in front of other people) b/c the 2 y/o makes an occasional sound or doesn’t sit still.
Should’t we be welcoming the family and making them feel like they belong. It’s not easy packing up several children and bring them to mass in the first place, but many of us feel that it is important to attend as a family each week.
I would like to start somthing small at first with 3-4 families and then build from there. This ministry would not be sponsored by the parish in any way. I want to avoid the issues I had with youth ministry (see my post from 2 months ago).
I realize this thread could fit in on the vocations or parenting board as well, but I’ve come to respect the advice and opinions of the regular posters here. Please give me your honest opinions and advice concerning this important ministry.