Diocese of Joliet

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Office of Family Ministry

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Marriage, Family, and Relationship Enrichment

Our mission is to make "family" a more important part of "church." We do this by offering resources, services and programs to parishes and individual families to enrich, affirm, and nurture the many kinds of families who make up our diocesan church.

Wedding Anniversary Celebration
The annual Wedding Anniversary Mass for couples celebrating their 25th, 50th and over 50 yrs. anniversaries is held at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet, IL each year.   In 2022, the Mass will be held on August 28. Formal invitations are sent out to the 25th and 50th anniversary couples whose names we receive from the parishes. 
Those couples celebrating over 50 yrs. anniversaries do not receive a formal invitation but are also invited to attend. 

Parishes are encouraged to hold anniversary celebrations regarding marriage on World Marriage Day, which is always the second Sunday in February. Suggestions for ways to celebrate World Marriage Day are sent to the parishes each year by Worldwide Marriage Encounter.

Worldwide Marriage Encounter

The Worldwide Marriage Encounter weekend is a positive, private experience for married couples who want to work at revitalizing their marriage, whether married in a religious or civil ceremony. The weekend is designed to enrich and deepen the joys a couple share together and is beneficial to couples of all ages and years married, from a short time to many years For more information and upcoming dates for Worldwide Marriage Encounter in the Joliet diocese,check our Event Calendar, go to their website, or call 630-577-0778 to register.

Natural Family Planning

Information, class schedules, reservations, and support for couples who are interested in learning more about Natural Family Planning are available from The Office of Family Ministry at 815-838-5334.  Check our Event Calendar for dates and times for English and Spanish classes.

Parenting and Marriage Enrichment

Material and videos are available for individuals or couples who would like to minister in these areas or enhance their relationships.  Check these videos for streghting your relations. See our Event Calendar for upcoming trainings and enrichment days for marriage preparation ministers. Please call The Office of Family Ministry for more information: (815) 838-5334.

Baptism Preparation Programs

Most of us instinctively know that the birth of a child, especially of one's first child, is a time of explosive change in one's marriage, self-identity, and spirituality. Many couples say their lives changed more dramatically when their first child arrived than when they were married. While this is usually a time of great joy, it is also a time which puts significant stress on a new, or not-so-new, marriage. Any interested parish or parish representative can contact The Office of Family Ministry for more information: (815) 838-5334.   Check our Event Calendar for upcoming programs.

Men and Family Roles

Materials to help men reflect on their identities as husband and father are available from The Office of Family Ministry, as is assistance in setting up groups for men to reflect on these issues. The office also offers workshops and seminars designed to help men come to a fuller sense of their roles in family life.

Catholic Grandparent Ministry

The Catholic Grandparents Association (CGA) is a global association of the faithful, united in a  firm belief in the important vocation of Grandparents to strengthen the bonds of faith and family life through the generations. The CGA Mission is to PASS ON THE FAITH and HELP KEEP PRAYER AT THE HEART OF FAMILY LIFE.

The CGA offers practical and spiritual support to nurture the vocation of grandparents, to affirm, assist, encourage and engage grandparents in the transmission of faith within their families, the domestic church. Pope Francis stated, “How important grandparents are for family life, for passing on the human and religious heritage so essential for each and every society.”

There are three established branches (chapters) of the Grandparent Ministry in our Diocese:  Our Lady of Mt Carmel in Darien, Our Lady of Mercy in Aurora, and St. Alexander in Villa Park. Grandparents are welcome to attend their chapter meetings, for further information email ministry coordinator Colleen Lowery at catholicgrandparentsolmc@gmail.com.

Grandparents and their families are also invited to the annual diocesan-wide Grandparent Mass held at the Cathedral of St. Raymond on World Day of Prayer for Grandparents & the Elderly, the 4th Sunday of July, on or near the feast of heavenly patrons, St. Joachim and St. Anne, the parents of Mary and the grandparents of Jesus.

Pope Francis: “Dear Grandfathers and Grandmothers, at this crucial moment in history, you have a renewed vocation. The mission of grandparents is a real and true vocation. Grandparents’ words hold something special for the young. This is how faith is transmitted – through the elders who have made their faith the leaven of their life.”

Retrouvaille

Retrouvaille is a program designed to help couples heal and renew their marriages.  This weekend program helps couples to put the pieces back together and rebuild loving relationships. Husbands and wives re-establish communication and gain new insights into themselves as individuals and as a couple.

For information, reservations or other dates and locations, call 815-214-9199 or go to www.HelpOurMarriage.com .

Clearing House

The Office of Family Ministry acts as a clearinghouse and source of information for a wide variety of independent family movements and groups, such as Christian Family Movement (Movimiento Familiar Cristiano), Parenting for Peace and Justice, Stepfamily Association of America, etc. See our Helpful Links page for more information.

Referrals

Although The Office of Family Ministry does not offer counseling, the nature of our programs is such that participants often find the need to seek professional resources, Dr. Val Maty, is available to help in that process.

The office wishes to bring a family perspective to parish ministry. We offer consultation with parishes regarding any family issue, and are particularly interested in the formation and maintenance of family ministry teams and commissions.

Please check our Event Calendar for dates of upcoming marriage, family, and relationship enrichment programs.