Marriage, Family and Respect Life: News


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50th Anniversary of Humanae Vitae for Families!

In recognition of the 50th Anniversary of Blessed Pope Paul VI’s landmark encyclical, Humanae Vitae, the Diocese of Steubenville will be hosting a special event. Married couples and families are invited to join Bishop Jeffrey Monforton and the Natural Family Planning Instructors from across the diocese to celebrate the Church’s beautiful teachings on married love and the gift of new life. The event will include a Mass at 11:00 AM followed by a potluck meal. It will take place on Saturday, February 10, 2018 at St. Benedict Church (701 Gomber Ave, Cambridge Ohio). Please RSVP with the number of people attending from your family by contacting Joe Schmidt of the Office of Marriage, Family and Respect Life at or 740-373-3643. Come and enjoy fellowship and support in living out this beautiful vocation.



Entering Canaan Day of Prayer and Healing

On Saturday, January 27, 2018, an "Entering Canaan” Day of Prayer and Healing for women who are suffering as a result of an abortion. The day will be led by Theresa Bonopartis, developer of the ministry, and hosted by Project Rachel of the Diocese of Steubenville. There is no charge for the retreat but a freewill offering will be taken up.   For further information and confidential reservations please call or text 740-275-7038 or email  Come and experience the merciful healing of God!



NEW: Culture of Life Update

apnb1bxuj576j7gm0b31j1je1il.jpgAs part of our celebration of Respect Life Month, the Office of Marriage, Family and Respect Life will be launching a new email newsletter called the Culture of Life Update. The Culture of Life Update is a sleek monthly email newsletter specifically designed for busy people. It provides a once-a-month overview of the news stories related to life, marriage and family. The Culture of Life Update is a convenient and easy way to keep informed about crucial issues that are often ignored by the mainstream media. So many GOOD THINGS are happening every day. In addition to reporting about the challenges to human dignity and family life, the Culture of Life Update highlights the positive news and encouraging initiatives that are taking place around the country.
To learn more and sign up for the Culture of Life Update, please visit Please contact Joseph Schmidt ( or 740-373-3643) with any questions.



Respect Life Mass

New%20Logo.JPGBishop Jeffrey M. Monforton will offer a Mass for a greater respect of human life on Respect Life Sunday, October 1, 2017, at St. Agnes Church in Mingo Junction. The Mass will be held at 10:00 AM. An informal reception will follow the Mass in the Church Hall. All are invited to attend. Please contact Joseph Schmidt ( or 740-373-3643) with any questions. 



A Ministry for those Wounded by Abortion

9jz59s13yt6hl0pke7n5f16384l.jpgA ministry is being launched in the Diocese of Steubenville that offers paths to healing for women and men who have been wounded by the tragedy of abortion. The ministry, called Project Rachel, will be inaugurated at a Mass offered by Bishop Jeffrey Monforton at Holy Family Church in Steubenville at 7:00 PM on October 16, 2017.
Those affected by abortion often carry deep wounds for many years (and even decades), and often live in despair of God’s forgiveness and mercy. Everyone is invited to join us as we pray those affected by abortion may come to know the unconditional love of God in their lives. For more information, please contact Dan Hawrot (danhawrot@att.net740-424-4100) or Joseph Schmidt (jschmidt@diosteub.org740-373-3643).




Diocesan Marriage Formation Policy promulgated

bee3qxratsmpo2rwmiexz4f54fl.jpg(The Steubenville Register) -- A Marriage Formation Policy has been promulgated for the Diocese of Steubenville by diocesan Bishop Jeffrey M. Monforton. The multi-page document was formulated for the diocese at the initiation of a diocesan Marriage Commission, after Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia.” Released in 2016, “The Joy of Love” followed Synods on the Family in 2014 and 2015. “The ‘Joy of Love’ experienced by families is also the joy of the church, wrote Pope Francis ‘to shine a light on the vocation of marriage and family life,’ said Bishop Monforton. “Pope Francis encouraged local churches to evaluate and to strengthen their pastoral outreach to married couples and families,” Bishop Monforton’s letter of promulgation reads. “The Holy Father calls particular attention to personal accompaniment and support for married couples, for those preparing for marriage, for parents and for those in homes experiencing great crisis. “In an effort to respond to the invitation of the Holy Father and to address the particular needs of the Diocese of Steubenville, I have established new guidelines for marriage preparation.” The requirements for marriage preparation will take effect Jan. 1, 2018.
Learn more about the new marriage policy and the 5-Step Marriage Process on this page.


Natural Family Planning Classes in Athens (and Online)

? and Sharon Colvin, certified instructors for the Couple to Couple League, have announced a new series of Natural Family Planning Classes for 2017. CCL offers three types of classes to fit your schedule and preferred method of learning: OPTION 1: Live Onsite A series of three classes held in a classroom setting and taught by a certified teaching couple. Classes are spaced a month apart to give you a chance to practice what you learn. The cost for this option is $130. (See CALENDAR PAGE for scheduled classes.) OPTION 2: Live Online Similar to the onsite class but you meet live online, in a virtual classroom, with a certified teaching couple. You’ll see your teaching couple and have the ability to ask questions and get instant answers through a webcam or chat feature. The cost for this option is $130. OPTION 3: Self-paced Online This video based course teaches you NFP in a series of interactive lessons. You learn at your own pace and on your own schedule. You will be connected to a teaching couple who will be available by email or phone to help you along the way. The cost for this option is $99.


The Couple to Couple League provides instruction in a Sympto-Thermal Method of Natural Family Planning. This method is based on an awareness of a woman’s fertility.  It takes just a few seconds each morning to take the woman’s waking temperature or to notice any cervical mucus throughout the day, and then couples spend a few moments at the end of the day to discuss the observations. Through this process couples have a complete picture of their fertility. To learn more, visit and click on Learn NFP from CCL, or contact Bob & Sharon Colvin at 740.707.0882 or



Email Updates from the Office of Family and Social Concerns

emailIn an effort to keep people better informed about events and information related to the mission of the Office of Family and Social Concerns (ESPECIALLY PRO-LIFE, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY ISSUES), we are creating an email mailing list. We will be sending out occasional email updates (not every week!) to keep people in the loop about important information.
If you would like to be added to the list, please email us at Please direct any questions to Joe Schmidt ( or 740-373-3643).

5 Ways to a Stronger Family

The Archdiocese of Denver has created an inspiring and helpful video about family life. How can you make your family stronger? Watch the video to learn how! (Visit our Family Life page to access the video.)


Start Talking! Building a Drug-Free Future

A new effort is underway across Ohio to prevent drug abuse among Ohio’s most vulnerable citizens – our children. Governor John R. Kasich and First Lady Karen W. Kasich have launched Start Talking! to give parents, guardians, educators and community leaders the tools to start the conversation with Ohio’s youth about the importance of living healthy, drug-free lives. The Catholic Bishops of Ohio issued a statement about the initiative. “Start Talking is a program designed by the state of Ohio to help equip families and communities to clearly communicate the important message of drug prevention,” the Bishops said. “We support this critical initiative and we encourage Ohioans to visit for details".




Looking for more information?  Check out these newsletters:

A Newsletter of the US Catholic Bishops' Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities

 Visit their website here.



 marriage monthly

    Visit their website here.




  National Catholic Rural Life Conference

   Learn more on their website.