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The ninth World Meeting of Families 2018 is taking place in Dublin, Ireland from 21st – 26th August 2018 and the theme Pope Francis has suggested is The Gospel of the Family: Joy for the World.

Gathering families from around the world to celebrate, pray and reflect upon the importance of marriage and the family as the cornerstone of our lives, of our society and of our Church, this major international event is held every three years.

To help us prepare for Dublin as a diocese, we will be releasing ten simple ‘Insights’ which will be available each week, starting on Sunday 10th June until Sunday 12th August.  Each ‘Insight’ will offer a short reflection on a particular theme from ‘The Joy of Love’ and a couple of questions for you, or your Parish Pastoral Council, to consider.  Each ‘Insight’ will draw us in to an enriched appreciation and understanding of ‘Amoris Laetitia – The Joy of Love’.

Have a look at them, either on the website, or on your phone, sit down as a family, a couple, or download them.  You’ll also find links to the document ‘Amoris Laetitia – The Joy of Love’ and if you want to read it as a group, there’s a summary and other resources to help you do this too.  There’s so much information and plenty of resources and initiatives on the World Meeting of Families website to prepare us for Dublin, and you will find all the links you need here.

OFFICIAL FAMILY PRAYER FOR WORLD MEETING OF FAMILIES 2018

God, our Father,

We are brothers and sisters in Jesus your Son,

One family, in the Spirit of your love.

Bless us with the joy of love.

Make us patient and kind,

gentle and generous,

welcoming to those in need.

Help us to live your forgiveness and peace.

Protect all families with your loving care,

Especially those for whom we now pray:

[We pause and remember family members and others by name].

Increase our faith,

Strengthen our hope,

Keep us safe in your love,

Make us always grateful for the gift of life that we share.

This we ask, through Christ our Lord,
Amen

Ten Insights for the Life in ‘Amoris Laetitia: The Joy of Love’

#1. The Family that Prays together stays together

In addition to attending Mass, Pope Francis encourages families to pray together in their homes during the week, this includes setting aside time to read Scripture, and maybe start with next Sunday’s reading. He also encourages families to frequently receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation, seek out spiritual direction, and take occasional retreats together. It is especially significant when families pray for each other. It is helpful for spouses to give each other quiet times for prayer alone with God since each has his or her secret crosses to bear.

Questions:

  1. How would you describe your family prayer life, and your own? How could you find time for family prayer and what are the ways you could do this, even for a few moments every day?

 

  1. How are you, as a parish community, helping families to grow in their awareness of being the “domestic church” with a clear mission? What do we do to value the families in our community and what could we do better?
#2. Couples can help couples

#2. COUPLES CAN HELP COUPLES

Couples from the same parish or neighbourhood gathering together regularly in their own homes for faith sharing and prayer can be a great source of mutual support, strength, and encouragement in helping each other grow. Older couples can mentor the engaged in marriage preparation and spouses with older children can strengthen those with younger children. When couples grow in their knowledge of each other they can encourage each other to grow and support one another when they face difficulties, like the illness or death of a spouse or child, or when they face crises like the sins of infidelity, addictions, or violence.

Questions:

  1. In what ways could you, and your parish community, help married couples, or those preparing for marriage? How might we help young couples and what could we do to accompany newly-weds?

 

  1. How are you, as a parish community, helping families to grow in their awareness of being the “domestic church” with a clear mission? What do we do to value the families in our community and what could we do better?
#3. Marriage takes work

This insight will appear here on 24th June 2018

#4. Children are a wonderful gift from God

This insight will appear here on 1st July 2018

#5. Adoption is an option

This insight will appear here on 8th July 2018

#6. The Family is the Sanctuary of Life

This insight will appear here on 15th July 2018

#7. Please, Thank you, Sorry

This insight will appear here on 22nd July 2018

#8. Families need Personal Contact

This insight will appear here on 29th July 2018

#9. Marriage is Indissoluble

This insight will appear here on 5th August 2018

#10. His Mercy endures forever

This insight will appear here on 12th August 2018

Further Resources:

Summary document here

Anitra Rawlins, Marriage and Family Life Coordinator for Clifton Diocese answers your questions:

Clifton Diocese A future full of hope