By ROB HERBST
The Catholic Week
Go to most parishes and one can easily discover ministries geared toward youth, toward men, toward women or toward couples. But it can be challenging to find something that includes the entire family.
The Archdiocese of Mobile One Faith One Family Conference fills that role.
The biennial conference returns Aug. 2-3 at the Daphne Civic Center and it’s an opportunity for the entire family to come together.
“Virtually every program we have divides up the families and those programs are great, good and important,” said Archdiocese of Mobile Director of the Office of Evangelization and Family Life Pat Arensberg. “But it’s also important for the family to be together sometimes. The (mission of the conference) is two-fold. It’s to bring the entire family of the Archdiocese of Mobile together and it’s designed in a way to be family-friendly and for whole families to come together.”
The weekend will include a family-friendly trivia “game show” Friday and games will be mingled into Saturday’s schedule. It fits with this year’s theme, “The Family That Plays Together Prays Together.”
“That’s one of the things we really hope to emphasize at this conference — (the importance of) families spending time enjoying and playing with each other,” Arensberg said.
Dr. Gregory Popcak and his wife, Lisa, will be the weekend’s featured speakers. They cohost the radio program More2Life on Ave Maria Radio and lead the Pastoral Solutions Institute, an organization dedicated to helping Catholics find faith-filled solutions to marriage, family and personal problems. The have also authored several books.
Arensberg said another aim of the conference will be to emphasize the importance of accomplishing day-to-day activities at home.
“The reality is when we go to Mass, it’s called the liturgy, which means ‘the work of the people.’ If the family is the domestic Church, then what is its liturgy?” Arensberg said. “The liturgy of the domestic Church is emptying the dishwasher and cooking supper and changing diapers and mowing the grass. Those things are not just tasks to be accomplished so we are free to do the Holy stuff. We need to find a way as a family to realize those activities are our liturgies. That’s the work we are called to. It’s precisely in doing those things that we become sanctified.”