Summer months make splashes with different kinds of activities from those we experience during the typical school year! Hopefully, all families will be able to take some extra time to devote to family activities, such as vacation time, play time for children (with no homework), and parents and children able to enjoy their favorite events, like picnics and swimming. Probably the most priceless treasure is found in the family’s simple sharing of stories of the day and time to be together and to listen to one another in a more leisurely environment.
Family Life Ministry enjoys serving you in support of all aspects of family life. We are so grateful to share with you that His Excellency, the Most Reverend Armando Xavier Ochoa, D.D., is continuing the tradition of celebrating the Bishop’s Annual Anniversary Mass for Married Couples! This year it will be celebrated on World Marriage Day, Sunday, February 10, 2013 at 3:30 p.m. in the afternoon, at St. Mary’s Church in Visalia. The Bishop will celebrate both the 2012 & 2013 Anniversaries of 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50+ years of Married Couples.
As in the past, couples will register with their parishes, in order to receive a certificate at the light reception that follows the Anniversary Mass. More information will follow, as the date draws closer.
I have found records showing that Bishop’s Annual Anniversary Mass for Married Couples has been celebrated since at least 1999 in deaneries throughout the Diocese of Fresno. We are most grateful for our pastors and people who, over many years, have so generously shared of themselves and of their parishes, welcoming the Diocese and our married couples to celebrate in their churches and halls.
I have been humbly grateful for the generosity of Rev. Eric Swearingen and his devoted staff and parishioners at Holy Spirit in Fresno, who have hosted this celebration since I have been here in 2009. I am just as grateful for the whole-hearted and generous welcome extended to me on behalf of the Diocese for this event by Rev. Msgr. Raymond Dreiling, V.F., and his staff and parishioners in Visalia, who are already in the planning stages for this happy occasion!
Family Life Ministry is now on Face book
, where information is posted concerning family life and where our family life organizations can share their events as well. We welcome you to visit our page—a work in progress: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Diocese-of-Fresno-Family-Life-Ministry/159104774151023?ref=hl
As you know, our Diocese of Fresno website, www.dioceseoffresno.org
, has a page devoted to Family Life, which includes our Family Life Newsletter, a list of Family Life organizations, websites and dates, as well as Respect Life information. Links on the diocesan website include the California Catholic Conference, California Legislative Network, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Pro life Secretariat. These links are rich in material devoted to Marriage, including http://foryourmarriage.org
and the Bishops’ alerts regarding legislative advocacy, http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/religious-liberty
Also included on the main page of the Diocese of Fresno website is a link to Diocesan Legislative Advocacy, which gives information presently focusing on religious liberty issues. Information changes sometimes daily to legislative advocacy information, so the best source of the most current information comes from the ALERTS for which one can sign up through California Legislative Network, USCCB and the USCCB Pro Life Secretariat. Using Google will bring one to these sites.
August 5-8, 2012 the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Pro-Life Secretariat hosts its 2012 Diocesan Pro-Life Leadership Conference in Garden Grove, CA. I am happy to represent our Diocese at this Conference.
Later this month, the USCCB Pro-Life Secretariat will be sending to each parish the Respect Life Kit
to be used during October Respect Life Month, or later in the year, such as in January, around the time of Walk for Life/ March for Life and our Respect Life Mass, to be held this year on January 19, 2013 at St. John’s Cathedral. We are most grateful to Rev. Salvador Gonzalez, Jr., pastor, and to the choir, staff and parishioners at St. John’s Cathedral, who, over many years, have shared their 4:15 p.m. Saturday Vigil Mass with us in order for the Diocese to celebrate Respect Life, close to the date of Roe vs. Wade / Walk for Life.
Sr. Joanne Bauer, C.S.C.
Family Life Coordinator