The Family Apostolate is initiated by Father Vincent Arisukwu, Associate Pastor of the Christ the King Parish, Glen Burnie in Maryland, U.S.A.
The Family Apostolate (Ministry) was inspired by the need to promote spirituality and prayer in family and married life. In line with the New Evangelization, the Apostolate engages in pastoral care; promotes prayer life and regular reception of the sacraments; imparts catechesis, offers opportunities for family get-togethers; connects families with the church and with one another. The Family Apostolate seeks to bring the merciful presence of Christ to families in an increasingly difficult world.
Core Mission Priorities:
- Family Life-
Goal: Seek and promote family values; strengthen family bonds; restore family as the center of the society.
Goal: Provide pastoral, educational and psychological support for married couples.
- 3. Engaged couples:
Goal: Provide training and resources for marriage preparation and support.
The Home Blessings is the premier outreach of the Family Apostolate. It involves the visiting of individual homes by a priest accompanied by volunteers of the Family Apostolate. The home is blessed by the priest. Blessing of the home is a beautiful way of sanctifying the dwelling place of Christians and reasserting the presence of God in the home. Home Blessings introduce or reaffirm the critical practice of praying together as a family. It teaches children the importance of family prayer and affords families the opportunity to share stories invoking the gentle maternal presence of Mary. At the Home Blessings, the FA makes family prayer both natural and enjoyable, leaving families with memorable sacramental images. We share God’s word in the Scripture with families and play soul uplifting songs. FA Home Blessings take place mostly in the fall, but is open to those who need it at other times pending the availability of the priest.
Approaches of the Family Apostolate:
The Apostolate dedicates two special prayer times for families:
1) Weekly Wednesday holy hour before the Blessed Sacrament. Through scripture reading and reflection, meditation and songs, we pray for families before the Blessed Sacrament for one hour every Wednesday. Weekly adoration holds at the Church of Crucifixion, 100 Scott Ave., Glen Burnie, MD 21060.
2) The first Saturday Family Mass and devotion. The parish-family gathers to pray for each other and for families all over the world. Special events such as birthdays, marriage anniversaries, are promoted and blessed at the First Saturday mass.
- E-Newsletter – The FA publishes a quarterly newsletter on Marriage and Family Life. We publish articles, conduct interviews, use photos and family-oriented resources to teach and evangelize. The newsletter is emailed through the Mail-chimp and sometimes printed in hard copies for readers.
- Facebook Page – We publish exhortations, events and picture stories on our Facebook page. Occasionally, we use video clips to provide pastoral care for our Facebook followers.
- Website – The FA website hosts the entire FA activities. We publish reflections, news/events, blog articles on marriage and family life. We publish photos of FA events, and provide Sunday homilies. Our website address is, www.familypriest.com.
- Brochure – A quick reference handout summarizing the outreach activities, volunteer opportunities and contact information on how best to get in touch with the FA team is found in the churches at Christ the King parish, Glen Burnie.
- Family Breakfast Fellowship - The First Saturday Family Breakfast Fellowship is established to promote friendship among families, encourage attendance to morning masses especially on the first Saturday of the month and to promote a spirit of service. The breakfast fellowship brings ministries in the church together.
- Marriage Prep- The Family Apostolate provides support for engaged couples. The FA works closely with the Marriage and Family Life office in the archdiocese of Baltimore to train marriage sponsor couples. Through the FA, engaged couples gain access to the Prepare and Enrich Marriage Preparation program.
Retreats and Conferences
Ladies Retreat – The FA organizes annual retreat for ladies. The retreat provides spiritual and pastoral support for women as wives, mothers, grandmothers and sisters in-law. At the retreat, women meet new friends, receive inspirational and spiritual talks and appreciate moments of silence with God. We also offer healings through the sacrament of reconciliation, through talks and healing prayers from priest moderators.
- The Family Apostolate promotes volunteering in a unique way. Through the fruits of their own prayer life, they work to bring the face of Christ to families. FA volunteers avail themselves during home blessings, form the prayer teams at Adoration and first Saturday devotion for families. They promote the First Saturday breakfast fellowship and make it work. The volunteers become a smiling face, listening ear and open heart who attract many persons to the church and to friendship. FA volunteer is open to interested Catholics.
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