ST. BONIFACE — St. Timothy Parish in St. Vital has launched the first Marriage, Family and Life Team in the Archdiocese of St. Boniface.
Even though the archdiocese had established a diocesan Marriage, Family and Life Service, no such group had existed at the parochial level until the creation of this special team for the pilot project at St. Timothy’s Parish in St. Vital.
“Our objective is to create special events to inspire participation at the parochial level,” says Nadine Fetherston, president of the Marriage, Family and Life Team at St. Timothy’s.
“We really want to make it easier for families to bring their children to church and make it more welcoming for all,” adds Grace Grindean, parish co-ordinator and a member of the team. “Here, we do not just go to church, we are the church.”
Up to now, the team has planned events around themes coinciding with the calendar year. In January, during which there is the feast of Epiphany and right after the feast of the Holy Family, all parishioners were invited to bless their houses with blessed chalk, according to an Eastern Christian European tradition.
In February, St. Valentine’s month, marriage was the central focus. In May, the month that includes Mother’s Day and the National Week for the Family and Respect for Life, “we collected clothing and articles for babies, which will be donated to Baby Layette Love,” announced Nadine. “This activity was a huge success: we collected 1,400 articles!
Finally, in June we plan an event for the enrichment of marriage, Table for Two, with supper and romantic discussions on the menu.”
“We are receiving a good response to these planned events,” the team president says happily. “We started with five organizing team members and now we’re already up to ten!”
Ideas for followup activities are not lacking. “We want to reach everyone,” concludes Grace Grindean. “Going beyond just planning activities, we hope to become a support group, a resource available for people who are having difficulties in their marriage, their family or their life.”