Marriage, Family and Respect Life: Parish Resources
In an effort to support the wonderful work of the priests and parishes of the Diocese of Steubenville, the following resources have been provided for your use. We will update this section on a regular basis based on upcoming events and the needs of our priests and parishes. Please be sure to contact us if you are in need of other resources that we might be able to provide.
National Marriage Week USA (February 7-14, 2018) and World Marriage Day (February 11, 2018)
The need to encourage married couples and families in living out their vocation could not be greater!
The USCCB has provided some helpful resources for these celebrations. Below are excerpts from a letter from Archbishop Charles Chaput, Chairman of the USCCB Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth.
Preaching Resource – We are pleased to provide a preaching resource based on the scriptural readings for Sunday, Feb. 11. We hope the reflections, quotes, and references to Church teaching will inspire a homiletic theme on the sanctity of marriage with reference to the readings for the sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time. These readings, which focus on the healing power of God, relate to both the physically sick as well as to those who suffer spiritual and moral wounds in the areas of marriage and sexuality, and they also fit very well with the World Day of the Sick.
Bulletin Insert – Also provided is a bulletin insert that can be distributed in parishes during National Marriage Week or at any time. In commemoration of the 50 years of Humanae Vitae (1968-2018), this insert includes quotes re-affirming the Church’s teaching on married love and responsible parenthood.
Call to Prayer for Life, Marriage, and Religious Liberty – During National Marriage Week, dioceses and parishes might consider promoting Friday, February 9 as a day of prayer and sacrifice for this intention: “May all married couples and all in need of healing rely on God for their strength.” More about the Call to Prayer is available at usccb.org/pray.
For Your Marriage and Por Tu Matrimonio – An extensive collection of resources for couples who are married or preparing for marriage can be found in English and Spanish at ForYourMarriage.org and PorTuMatrimonio.org. Both sites also run Facebook pages, which will provide daily content during National Marriage Week: facebook.com/foryourmarriage and facebook.com/PorTuMatrimonio. Numerous resources for marriage can also be found on the USCCB website: usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/index.cfm.
Marriage: Unique for a Reason – This USCCB website offers resources to assist with the education and catechesis of Catholics on why marriage is unique and why it should be promoted and protected as the union of one man and one woman. Video and print materials can be found at marriageuniqueforareason.org. A new podcast series, “Made for Love,” will be launched in Jan. 2018.
World Marriage Day – World Marriage Day (Sunday, Feb. 11) is sponsored by Worldwide Marriage Encounter. In 1993, Pope St. John Paul II imparted his Apostolic Blessing on World Marriage Day. For more resources including sample prayer intentions, a Holy Hour prayer service, renewal of vows ceremony and printable prayer cards, visit: wmd.wwme.org.
National Marriage Week USA – Lastly, National Marriage Week USA launched in 2010, is part of an international event seeking to mobilize individuals, organizations, and businesses in a common purpose to strengthen marriage in communities and influence the culture. It promotes marriage as a social and cultural benefit leading to greater wealth, health, longevity and happiness. For information and resources, visit: nationalmarriageweekusa.org.
2017-2018 US Bishops Respect Life Program
US Bishops' Respect Life message (by Cardinal Timothy Dolan):
My dear friends in Christ:
Once again, we mark the month of October as Respect Life Month. Looking back over the last year, there's been a lot of uncertainty, suffering, and heartache. Between tragedies that occur in the public eye and trials that take place in our personal lives, there's no shortage of reasons we cry out to God.
At such times, we may feel alone and unequipped to handle the circumstances. But we have an anchor of hope to cling to. With words that echo through thousands of years into the corners of our hearts, God says to us, "Do not fear: I am with you" (Isaiah 41:10).
The 2017-2018 Respect Life theme, "Be Not Afraid," reminds us of this promise... (READ MORE)
The following resources are recommended for parishes and other ministries:
- Images - "Be Not Afraid" and Other Respect Life Images
Photo Credits: Family Photo by Photostock