Home Page Home Page Events Events Photos Photos Diocese of Ogdensburg Home Page  
Follow Us on Facebook

Archives Event to help foster connections for families

October 3, 2018

By Kristina Dean
Staff Writer

OGDENSBURG – Calling “The Catholic Family: God’s Answer for Our Time,” a great opportunity for families to strengthen daily practices and to connect with other faithful families, Diocesan Family Life Director Stephen Tartaglia encouraged men, women and teens to attend the Oct. 13 event.

Held at St. Mary’s Cathedral, the 12-hour event includes guest speakers, Mass with Bishop Terry R. LaValley, specially created “break-out” sessions for teens, a healing Rosary, morning prayer, and a box lunch.

All families face tough times, Tartaglia said. These include paying bills, educating children, marital challenges, illness and employment struggles. What is distinctive about Catholic families is that they strive to cope with problems while keeping Christ at the center of the family. The long-term challenge in keeping Christ at the center is the isolation and backlash they experience, he said.

Catholic Family“They are swimming against the tide,” Tartaglia said. “As our culture and the institutions of our society slip further into godlessness, faithful Catholics find themselves more and more at odds with those around them. As Catholic teaching and practices are ridiculed and called antiquated, over the long haul, Catholic families can grow weary of ‘fighting the good fight’ and there can be a temptation to gradually move Christ out of the center.”

Besides developing practices like daily prayer, spending time together, attending Mass, and partaking in the sacraments, families also need to develop support systems, Tartaglia said.

“This means reaching out to other faithful Catholic families and spending time with them. Connecting with other like-minded people reduces the sense of anxiety, loneliness and isolation, and builds networks of people who help each other,” he said.

The day’s keynote speaker is Johnnette Benkovic Williams, founder and president of the Women of Grace (WOG) ministry as well as television host of EWTN’s WOG television and radio program. Benkovic Williams will speak on how the Catholic family is a beacon of hope in an age of confusion.

“I'm thrilled to be invited to the Diocese of Ogdensburg and the beautiful St. Mary's Cathedral for the upcoming conference on the Catholic family,” she said. “St. John Paul II stated that the future of humanity passes by way of the family. During this time of challenge, I truly believe that families transformed by the truths of the faith and the grace of the sacraments can do much to bring healing to our world and to the Church.”

Speaker Susan Brinkmann, author, journalist and director of communications and New Age Research at WOG will center on how Catholics can understand where the attacks on the family are coming from and how the Catholic faith can empower them. She will also address teen girls who are preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Her presentation, “Unleashing the Genius Within You,” will introduce girls to St. John Paul II’s concept of the feminine genius.

Author Thomas K. Sullivan will speak about “The Rosary: Your Weapon for Spiritual Warfare.” The military veteran will explain how to protect our families and arm ourselves and our children on the battlefield of life by relying on the Rosary. His presentation to teen boys is entitled, “Knighted by Christ: Ignited by the Holy Spirit” where he will discuss being a knight in the Kingdom of God.

The event is co-sponsored by the diocese and Women of Grace. For more information about lodging and to register, go to rcdony.org/familyevent

North Country Catholic North Country Catholic is
honored by Catholic Press
Association of US & Canada

Copyright © Roman Catholic Diocese of Ogdensburg. All rights reserved.